A Guide for Faculty Supporting Students with Disabilities

Introduction

Approximately eight percent of the student body at Acadia University is registered with Accessible Learning Services.

While the majority of registered students self-identify as students with learning disorders, the number of students who require accommodations for mental health, medical related challenges, physical disabilities, and mobility impairments are steadily increasing. The mandate of Accessible Learning Services is to work with staff and faculty to remove barriers that may interfere with students’ academic success. The logic that underpins Acadia’s support for student accommodations is directed by a fundamental need to minimize potential challenges that may interfere with students’ academic progress. Acadia embraces the responsibility to support all students by providing academic accommodations that maximize opportunities for students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills.

Accommodation Registration Process Staff, faculty, and students all play important roles in the accommodations registration process. The integrity of the process depends on each embracing their responsibilities. Students are required to self-identify to Accessible Learning Services staff and notify their professors of all anticipated support needs. Accessible Learning Services staff is prepared to coach students on different strategies for discussing accommodation needs with faculty, and will also work with faculty to implement support recommendations.

New and returning Acadia students who anticipate the need for accommodations are required to arrange a meeting with the Disability Resource Facilitator either before they get to campus or shortly thereafter. Students should bring a recent medical or psychological educational documentation that highlights both the diagnosed condition and recommendation for accommodation to the meeting. Students are not required to present documentation to any other staff or faculty once documents have been accepted by Accessible Learning Services. This is done primarily to ensure that Acadia students receive appropriate accommodations without compromising their right to privacy. Students are advised of support resources that are available at Acadia University for students during the accommodations registration process.