INFORMATION FOR FACULTY
Letter of Academic Accommodation
OCAD University provides accommodations to students with disabilities in order to level the playing field and because it is part of our legal obligation under the Ontario Human Rights Code and Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.
All students registered with the CSD have the option of having professors/faculty notified of their need for accommodation via the Accommodation Letter. This letter may or may not include specific diagnostic information but it will include the kind of supports the student will need in order to be successful at OCAD U. Students are encouraged to discuss their accommodation needs with professors/faculty as they relate to each course; however, students may chose not to disclose the nature of their disability for a variety of reasons. Please note that by virtue of being registered with the CSD, the student has provided the CSD with medical documentation validating the accommodations listed in the letter.
If at any point during the semester you have questions or concerns about how to implement accommodations or if you are feeling something or someone should be brought to our attention, please do not hesitate to contact us at the CSD.
Below, please find a list of some of the common accommodations granted to students with disabilities and how you, as the professor/faculty, can be of assistance in implementing the accommodations.
Advanced Copy of Syllabus
Students who need to compensate for reading, mood, stamina or memory challenges may need to begin preparing for the semester ahead of time. Should a student choose to make use of this accommodation, he or she will first check on My Courses to see if any information is available. If it is not, the student may email you requesting a copy of the syllabus. We understand that this may be a work in progress up until it is sent to the printer. If such is the case, please feel free to provide students with a copy of the previous semester’s syllabus if it is similar. This would be helpful because sometimes the purpose in asking for the syllabus is to ascertain course fit in terms of mark breakdown and nature of assignments and a previous syllabus will fulfill this need.
Exam accommodations will be made for those students wishing to make use of this accommodation as outlined in the student’s Accommodation Letter. Students must complete the Request for Exam Accommodation form available online or from the CSD office no later than two weeks prior to the exam date. We encourage students to complete this form and submit it to the CSD as soon as possible (preferably after receiving the course syllabus). While making the accommodation request is solely the student’s responsibility, faculty reminders are appreciated.
Sabrina Lindo will email you once a student has made a request for exam accommodation. We recognize that the exam may not be finalized when you receive this email but please respond to the email with the following information:
- Duration of the exam (to allow us to calculate extended time and arrange invigilators)
- Format of the exam (eg. multiple choice or essay) whether supplementary materials may be used (eg. open book exam, images, dictionary, etc.)
- Where possible, please provide a cell phone contact number where you can be reached during the exam in case a situation should arise. If none is provided we will attempt to contact you at the location where the exam is being written. Failing this we will use our best judgment to deal with any issues.
We require an electronic copy of the exam be emailed to Sabrina Lindo a minimum of two business days prior to test date as this allows us to ensure format compatibility, to print colour copies of slides and to preload materials onto testing computers.
Accommodated Exam Pick Up Information
Every effort will be made to drop off completed exams at the faculty office on the day the exam was written. Should the faculty office be closed when the exam is completed, the exam will be dropped off the morning of the next business day. If you would like to make alternative arrangements, including having exams divided by a specific TA/marker system, please contact the Assistant at 416-977-6000 ext. 339 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Because of the challenges certain disabilities present, it may take some students longer to complete assignments than it would their peers. As such, these students’ Accommodation Letters may reference extensions. It is not the job of the CSD to grant extensions but we can provide recommendation guidelines for professors/faculty in terms of when to grant and how long.
When students make requests for extensions, we ask that they notify the CSD so that we may better advise professors/faculty should we be contacted by them.
Disability Related Absences
Sometimes students are unable to come to class due to their disability for a variety of reasons including unforeseen symptom onset, important medical appointments, safety reasons and medication complications. When these absences occur, we ask that students communicate not only with the CSD but with their professors/faculty as well. In this way, we can verify the validity of the absence without compromising privacy. Please note that the student is responsible for any coursework missed during these absences.
Alternative Format Requests
Increasingly, CSD students are using adaptive technology to assist them in overcoming disability-related barriers. As such, we are asking for professor/faculty support as we convert text books and course readers into alternative format text. We recognize that we are asking a lot from professors/faculty but please remember that alternative format production is a time consuming process and the sooner we begin preparing for the semester’s readings, the shorter the lag time for students in accessing the materials they need to ensure success.
In order to assist our ongoing efforts please:
- Post your course syllabus as soon as possible so we know what books the students may require in your class (it is OK if it changes, at least we will have a head start!)
- Request a desk reference copy of the text book and consider donating it to the CSD for scanning purposes (otherwise we will have to use the student’s copy and that means they are without a textbook while we are scanning)
- Provide the CSD with a list of the articles or a copy of the course package so we may scan it for students
- Provide URL links to readings and images instead of producing a course package
Information about inclusive teaching will be periodically posted here.
CSD Notes from a workshop on inclusive teaching at OCAD, May 2006 (PDF).
Please contact the CSD if you are interested in learning more about how to accommodate students with disabilities in your classroom or if you're interested in learning strategies or adaptive technologies available through the CSD.
Last Modified:3/21/2013 11:03:07 AM