Procedures for Faculty

Policy Statement

No person with a disability will be discriminated against on the basis of his or her disability as defined in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and redefined in Public Law 101-336, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. The ADA requires institutions of higher learning to make reasonable accommodations for the needs of qualified students with disabilities as they pursue a postsecondary education. Tennessee Technological University, being committed to high academic standards and the development of self-esteem and dignity in all members of the academic community, will provide reasonable accommodations to assist the student with disabilities in participating in university programs.

Definitions

Disability: A disability, with respect to an individual seeking accommodations in programs and services, is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of the individual.

Qualified Individual with a Disability: A qualified individual with a disability must satisfy the requisite skill, experience, education and other program-related requirements and can perform, with or without reasonable accommodation, the essential requirements of such program.

Reasonable Accommodation: Reasonable accommodation as defined by the ADA includes making existing facilities readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, acquiring or modifying equipment or devices, adjusting or modifying examinations or class schedules, providing qualified readers or interpreters, and other similar accommodations for individuals with disabilities. Reasonable accommodation does not include fundamental changes to an activity, undue financial burden, or undue administrative burden.

Responsibilities for Implementation

Faculty

  1. Adhere to the University's policies and procedures regarding students with disabilities.
  2. Make accommodations in courses as specified in the AR.
  3. Be aware that ODS has a Disability Services Faculty Handbook and other resources that can be used in assisting students with disabilities.
  4. Add a statement to all course syllabi stating, "Students with a disability requiring accommodations should contact the Office of Disability Services (ODS). An Accommodation Form (AF) should be completed as soon as possible, preferably by the end of the first week of the course. The ODS is located in the Roaden University Center, Room 112; phone 372-6119."

Office of Disability Services (ODS)

The Office of Disability Services is responsible for providing assistance to students with disabilities to support their educational development and vocational outcomes. The ODS provides direct assistance in appropriate classroom accommodations, creation and maintenance of an accessible physical environment, access to technology equipment, and encouragement of independence. The ODS facilitates the provisions for students that include, but are not limited to, recruitment, admissions, academic programs, housing, health services, counseling, financial aid, physical education, athletics and recreation. A full-time Director, Assistant Director, a Sign Language Interpreter and secretarial support are located in the ODS.

The ODS:

  1. Serves as a liaison between students and the University community.
  2. Maintains confidential records of students who have registered with the ODS.
  3. Assists students with disabilities in securing services.
  4. Facilitates academic accommodations through planning and implementing the Accommodation Form (AF).
  5. Addresses campus accessibility issues with appropriate TTU personnel.

Procedures

General

All students applying for admission to Tennessee Technological University must follow the application procedures outlined in the TTU Catalog. Once admitted, students with disabilities are required to register with the ODS to be entitled to the services accorded to students with disabilities. To be protected by the ADA, a person must not only be an individual with a disability, but must be qualified. Early contact with the ODS is essential for many services, especially for pre-enrollment planning, early registration permits, specialized orientation, and completion of the ARF.

Disability information is confidential and is released only upon consent of the student. Due to confidentiality issues, a student with a disability must present his/her own requests for accommodations and services to the Office of Disability Services.

Evaluation of the Disability

Students must submit appropriate documentation of their disability to the ODS. If the student has a learning disability, documentation includes a restricted intelligence test and an achievement battery in math, reading, written language, and spelling. For other disabilities, documentation includes a medical evaluation submitted by a physician or other qualified specialist.

Documentation of a student's disability should be current but must not be more than three years old and must clearly state the nature of the disability. The University may request more recent information. For a learning disability (i.e., visual-motor integration difficulties, auditory memory deficits, etc.), the report should describe the impact this disability has had on academic performance and accommodations that have been made in school. If the student has documentation more than three years old or if a student suspects that he/she is learning disabled and has never had an evaluation, the ODS will encourage the student to complete diagnostic procedures elsewhere as the University does not provide this service.

Requests for Accommodation

A student with a disability who is requesting a reasonable accommodation must make an appointment with the ODS to discuss the support systems or other special accommodations he/she may need. If the student has recent (no more than 3 years old) documentation from the appropriate professional, the following accommodation procedures are followed:

  1. Each semester the student meets with the ODS Director or Learning Disabilities Coordinator to discuss specific accommodations. This meeting should be scheduled prior to registration but no later than the first week of the semester, when possible. (Some students may not be able to present documentation until later in the semester due to their having to go through an evaluation process to diagnose a disability). The Accommodation Form (AF) form is then completed with recommendations based on the documentation of the disability and signed by the Director of the ODS.
  2. Students are expected to deliver the form to the appropriate faculty member during the first week of classes, or as soon as possible. The faculty member may accept the AF as written or may recommend additional accommodations.
  3. If the faculty member and student are in agreement, both sign the form; the faculty member keeps a copy and the signed form is returned to the ODS by the student.
  4. If no agreement can be reached, a meeting should be arranged between the student, faculty member, Director of the Office of Disability Services or theAssistant Director, and Departmental Chairperson to develop an acceptable plan.
  5. Signed copies of the Accommodation forms are kept on file in the ODS.

Procedures for Testing Accommodations

NOTE: Students who are eligible for testing services must follow these procedures. The Office of Disability Services will be unable to provide testing services if the procedures are disregarded. Each student is required to make his/her own arrangements for testing accommodations with the Office of Disability Services at least 48 hours prior to the test time. The student must come into the Office of Disability Services to schedule a time for taking a test with accommodations. Phone calls are not acceptable. Test Adjustment Forms must be given to the instructor at least 36 hours prior to the test time. Upon receipt of the Test Adjustment Form, the faculty member is to complete the form and send it, along with the test, to the Office of Disability Services. The faculty member should send the test to the Office of Disability Services at least 24 hours prior to test time. Tests will remain securely locked up until the time of the test.

Tests will be given in the Office of Disability Services testing room in most instances. A proctor will be provided for each test. Students taking the tests will not be granted any more time than that determined to be appropriate prior to the test. Students will not be allowed any items in the testing room other than those items specifically listed by the faculty member on the Test Adjustment Form. The test and Test Request Form will be returned to the faculty member within 24 hours after the test. The Test Adjustment Form is to be signed by the faculty member or a designee to indicate that the test was picked up by the faculty member or their representative, and the form will be filed in the Office of Disability Services.