Policy and Guidelines Regarding Accommodations
Carlow University makes every reasonable effort to provide qualified students (and prospective students) with disabilities with the opportunity to take full advantage of Carlow's programs, activities, services and facilities. Carlow does so not only in response to legal directives such as those set forth in the Americans With Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, but as part of its mission to create a community of learners who "respond reverently and sensitively to God and to others and to render competent and compassionate service in personal and professional life."
Guidelines for Seeking Accommodations
For the University to respond appropriately to requests for accommodations, students are expected to follow certain guidelines and assume certain responsibilities.
1. Students seeking accommodations should provide timely notice and documentation of
- the nature and extent of the disability,
- the functional limitations resulting from the disability, and
- the accommodations requested
to the Disabilities Services Office at 412-578-6257. Students are responsible for cooperating with the Disabilities Services Office in an interactive process to identify appropriate accommodations.
2. To request accommodations, students should provide the University with current documentation as described more fully in the section below entitled "Documentation Guidelines." A school plan such as an IEP may not necessarily be sufficient for this purpose.
- The documentation should describe how the disability affects or impacts the individual's ability to partake of the University's programs and activities.
- In some cases, it may be necessary for the University, with student permission, to contact the medical or health professional providing the report to obtain further information or clarification.
- While documentation from professionals may include specific recommendations for accommodation, the University reserves the right to determine what accommodations are reasonable and appropriate within the University setting and within technical and academic requirements of the program.
- Four to six week prior to the start of every semester, students should meet with the Disabilities Services Provider to discuss their upcoming schedule of classes, update any documentation, if necessary, and discuss accommodations.
3. The University will carefully review information and documentation provided by a student, analyze each student's individual needs, and engage in an interactive process with the student to determine what accommodations may be reasonable and appropriate under the circumstances.
- Documentation and information regarding a disability are considered confidential and will be revealed only with prior written student permission, unless otherwise required by law.
- Letters approving accommodations, which are prepared by the Disabilities Services Representative and distributed to the appropriate faculty and staff by the student, generally will include information only about the accommodations; it is the student's prerogative to disclose or not disclose information about the disability itself to faculty and/or staff.
4. The University has a right to a reasonable amount of time to review documentation which is submitted, to interview the student, and to take other necessary steps before providing accommodations.
5. The University need not provide accommodations that would fundamentally alter the essential characteristics or nature of a program. Likewise, the University need not provide the exact accommodation requested by the student. The University may provide alternate accommodations as long as they are reasonable and appropriate to make the University's programs, activities, services, and facilities accessible to that individual.
Implementation of Approved Accommodations
1. Once the University has approved the accommodations, the student is responsible for sharing an accommodations letter, if needed, with her instructors and meeting with them to discuss the implementation of the accommodations.
- The student should arrange a private meeting time other than scheduled class hours to discuss the accommodations.
- The student is not obligated to identify or discuss the specifics of her disability.
- The student also should inform the instructor and/or Disabilities Services Provider when particular teaching and testing approaches present difficulties, and should report to the Disabilities Services Office when the accommodations are not being implemented, when they are not effective or necessary, when they might need to be adjusted, or when they are no longer being used.
- Further, the student should follow through and be on time with any accommodations which impact other individuals' schedules, such as tutors, readers, sign-language interpreters, test administrators, aides, or, if necessary, canceling them with adequate notice.
2. Faculty and staff cooperate with the Disabilities Services Office to provide authorized accommodations in a reasonable and timely manner and meet with the student who provides a letter of request for accommodations in order to determine the means of implementing the accommodation.
- If the student does not have a letter of request for accommodation or if the student has not yet contacted the Disabilities Services Office, the faculty or staff member shall refer the student to that office for processing the student's request.
3. If accommodations include testing in the Disabilities Services Office, the student is responsible for:
- arranging space, dates, and time with the Disabilities Services Representative
- providing adequate notice when a testing date is cancelled or changed
- arriving for testing on time and
- following the Instructors and Disabilities Services Provider's practices for insuring the integrity of the test and
- observing the University's policies on academic integrity.
4. Accommodations are not retroactive; that is, they do not impact tests or work completed prior to the student's submission of documentation and the University's determination of any necessary accommodation.
5. Students with disabilities have the same responsibility as other students to meet the University's academic, technical and behavioral standards and to follow the University's general policies and guidelines regarding standards of conduct.
Students have the right to appeal the University's decisions regarding requests for accommodation through the University's grievance procedure. To file such a grievance -- or to otherwise lodge a complaint in connection with this policy -- you may contact the office of the Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at 412-578-6072.