FAQ Serving Students With Special Needs

How will I be notified if I have a student with special needs in my class?

Hiring Process for a Tutor

Hiring Process for a Notetaker

What if a student requires a scribe or reader for exams?

What if a student requires a sign language interpreter?

Testing Accommodations

What do I do if I don’t understand how to grant an accommodation? 

If I suspect that a student has a disability can I tell them to
contact the ODS?

Am I required to lower my standards to make sure the
student passes my course?

What if I have a student with a disability in my class that is violent or disruptive?

 

How will I be notified if I have a student with special needs
in my class?

Instructions:

  1. Go to https://webcampus.wilmu.edu.
  2. Log in with your WebCampus faculty username and password (same as Blackboard login information). For username/password support, please go to http://esupport.wilmu.edu
  3. In the menu on the left, click Disability Accommodations.

Hiring Process for a Tutor

Students requiring a tutor are first encouraged to utilize the services in the Student Success Center. If the tutoring lab doesn’t cover the subject that the student has reported having difficulty then the student will need to inform the ODS. At that point, the ODS will contact the instructor of the said course to see if they can recommend someone that could tutor the student. If the instructor can’t recommend anyone, the division dean will be contacted to see if they can recommend someone. It is not the instructor’s nor the division dean’s responsibility to secure the tutor but their assistance is necessary since they are the experts. In most cases, the tutor is a student. If so, they will be compensated $10 per hour and the ODS will pay them. The student will need to complete a tutor verification form and W-9 form in order to ensure payment. 

Hiring Process for a Notetaker

Notetakers are provided as a reasonable accommodation for students with documented disabilities that interfere with the individual’s ability to take notes in class. Instructors are asked to select a student in class to serve as a notetaker for the disabled student. If the instructor has difficulty selecting a student, they may ask the class for a volunteer but must make sure the disabled student’s name is not revealed. There are three alternatives for the provision of notetaker accommodations. The instructor should meet with the disabled student to discuss the best notetaking method for them.

  1. The instructor can provide the student with a copy of his/her personal lectures notes.
  1. *Peer notetaker (carbonless notebook). A student selected in the course will take notes for the disabled student using a carbonless notebook (provided by the Office of Disability Services).  The carbonless notebook paper makes a second copy automatically as the notetaker writes, as a result photocopying is not needed.  Because of the confidentiality of the student’s disability, the notetaker should submit a copy of their notes to the instructor at the conclusion of every class. At that point, you will need to give the notes to the disabled student. The notetaker will be responsible for keeping the carbonless notebook because the bottom copy of the notes will remain in the notebook as their actual notes for the class.
  2. *Peer notetaker (photocopying). A student selected in the course will take notes and a photocopy of those notes is given to the disabled student. The notetaker will need to provide their notes to the instructor at the conclusion of each class. The instructor will need to make a copy of the notes then return the original notes to the notetaker and the copied notes to the disabled student.

Notetaker's Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Notetaker accommodation is a confidential service. If you are aware of the student you are providing notes for, do not disclose to anyone the name of the student or any information about that student.
  2. If for some reason you are not able to attend class, you are required to get a substitute notetaker.  If you have difficulty doing so, you should inform the instructor so alternative arrangements can be made. Please share the Notetaker’s Duties and Responsibilities with the substitute to ensure they provide the proper level of notetaking service. 
  3. Notetakers are expected to take notes that are neat, detailed, and thorough using a dark pen. 
  4. Stay mentally alert in class!  If you miss an important piece of information, the student which you are taking notes for could suffer as a result. 
  5. Notetakers are not paid for classes missed, where there is a test or when there are no notes to take.
  6. You will need to submit your notes at the end of each class to the instructor unless permission has been granted from the disabled student to deal directly with them.
  7. In order to ensure payment you must complete a W-9 form issued to your instructor.  Your instructor will complete the Notetaker Verification Form and both forms will need to be returned at the CONCLUSION of the course to the Office of Disability Services.
  8. Substitute notetakers will also be compensated and will need to complete a W-9 form to ensure payment.  Instructors should indicate which dates the substitute provided notetaking services on the Notetaker Verification Form

Click here to get a copy of Notetaker's Duties and Responsibilities.PDF

What if a student requires a scribe or reader for exams?

It is the student’s responsibility to inform the ODS at least a week in advance. The ODS will assignment someone to the job. Scribes/Readers are given clear instructions on their role. A scribe/reader verification form needs to be completed by the instructor and the scribe/reader needs to complete a W-9 form. Both forms need to be returned to the ODS to ensure payment. 

What if a student requires a sign language interpreter?

Students are required to give the ODS at least two weeks notice when requesting an interpreter. Faculty and staff may request an interpreter for office hours, meetings, and other college-related events by contacting the Office of Disability Services. Students that utilize interpreters are required to adhere to the policies & procedures for deaf/hearing impaired students.

Testing Accommodations

If a student requires to be tested in a distraction-free setting contact the Office of Disability Services at least two weeks in advance so they can arrange for the student to be tested in a separate room.

The general rule of thumb for extended time for exams is time and a half or double time.

Extra time must be given even if the student is taking an online course or through Blackboard. A print version of the test may be necessary.

In Blackboard, if the instructor sets a timer for the exam, the student will get a warning that the time is almost up but the test never shuts off only records the time in the grade book...always allowing the student the opportunity to complete the test.

What do I do if I don’t understand how to grant an accommodation?

Instructors are not expected to be experts on disabilities. For assistance or clarification contact the Office of Disability Services. We CANNOT deny a student an approved accommodation. It’s the law. 

If I suspect that a student has a disability can I tell them
to contact the ODS?

If you have a student in your class that is having difficulty, it is suggested that you speak with them privately regarding the situation. If the student reveals to you that they have a disability, then you CAN suggest they contact the ODS to get help. You CANNOT ask or assume they have a disability. Remember, the student must self-identify.

Am I required to lower my standards to make sure the student
passes my course?

NO, the standards should be the same for all students. By granting special accommodations, we are leveling the playing field for these students; we provide an educational opportunity. It is their responsibility at that point to successfully complete course requirements.

What if I have a student with a disability in my class that is violent
or disruptive?

Students with disabilities are held to the same standards for appropriate behavior as outlined in the Wilmington University Code of Conduct located in the Student Handbook.