Accessibility Faculty Resources
Welcome! Accessibility Resources is eager to support your journey at Minnesota State University Moorhead. Accessibility Resources leads collaborations with students, faculty, staff, and the administrators to cultivate an inclusive environment, and facilitates the removal of existing barriers for the full inclusion of people with disabilities. As identified under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, we offer services, accommodations, and provide options for equal access and opportunity to ensure your successful transition to and experience at MSUM.
MSUM Accessibility Resources works closely with faculty and staff to assist in creating a “level playing field” for students. These services or approved accommodations provide equal access for individuals with an identified disability or functional need. Accessibility Resources assists students by completing an interactive process to determine reasonable accommodations, which would provide an equal opportunity in their academic experience. Accessibility Resources works with students on a case-by-case basis to make these determinations.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
Given legal mandates under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), postsecondary institutions must make reasonable accommodations in order to provide students with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in courses, programs, and activities. This includes extracurricular activities.
Policy Statement for Accommodating Students with Disabilities
Minnesota State Colleges and Universities is committed to ensuring its programs, services and activities are accessible to individuals with disabilities, through its compliance with state and federal laws. The system recognizes that individuals with disabilities may need accommodations to have equally effective opportunities to participate in or benefit from the system's programs, services and activities. Here is the policy in its entirety
What does it mean to be a “qualified student with a disability?”
A qualified student with a disability is a student, or prospective student, who meets the academic and technical standards required for admission or participation in an educational program or activity. Under this policy and consistent with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a disability is any physical, learning, medical, emotional, mental health condition that limits a “major life activity,” such as walking, hearing, seeing, speaking, breathing, or learning. Disabilities can be visible or non-visible.
What are Academic Accommodations?
Academic accommodations are reasonable modifications or services, as determined by Accessibility Resources (AR), that give a student with a disability an equal opportunity to benefit from the educational process. Accommodations can be in the form of academic adjustment or modifications such as extended time for test taking. Accommodations can also take the shape of auxiliary aids and services such as qualified sign language interpreters, note takers, screen readers, braille, large print, electronic formats of print materials, and adaptive equipment. The University does not provide accommodations that would “fundamentally alter” the educational program or academic requirements that are essential to a program of study or to fulfill licensing requirements. “Fundamental alteration” is a modification that is so significant that it alters the essential nature of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations offered.
A student is not required or expected to disclose a disability or medical condition to MSUM but will need to disclose to Accessibility Resources when requesting accommodations. A student’s disability or medical condition is private information and should not be shared with others unless there is a direct need to know.
Minnesota State University Moorhead (MSUM) is committed to providing equitable access to learning opportunities for all students and strives to make courses inclusive and accessible in accordance with sections 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The University will make reasonable accommodations for students with reported disabilities/conditions or barriers.
Accessibility Resources (AR) is available to facilitate a range of academic support services and accommodations for students who identify a barrier which hinders their academic experience. If you have a disability/condition or barrier, you can request assistance by contacting AR at email@example.com (email), 218-477-2167 (voice), or 218-477-4366 (fax). Once eligibility has been determined, students register with AR every semester to activate their approved accommodations. Although a student may request an accommodation at any time, it is best to initiate the application process at least four weeks before a student wishes to receive an accommodation.
Students may begin the accommodation process by submitting a Request for Accommodations form or contact Accessibility Resources.
The Director of Accessibility Resources, Chuck Eade, serves as MSUM’s ADA Coordinator for students. He can be reached at Charles.Eade@mnstate.edu. Additional information is available on the AR website: https://www.mnstate.edu/accessibility.
This agreement is provided to identify the parameters used to implement reasonable accommodations related to class attendance and assignment extensions. While students are generally expected to be in class in accordance with the course syllabus, there are instances when a student’s disability/condition may occasionally interfere with course attendance or progress on assignments.
Faculty are responsible for establishing assignment requirements and due dates for their classes and clearly communicating those due dates in the syllabus at the beginning of each term. All students, regardless of disability or medical condition, must fulfill the essential requirements, including due dates for assignments, of the applicable course, program, or degree. When navigating the approved accommodations with a student, faculty should not waive, compromise, or lower any academic standards, educational experiences, or outcomes. However, the University recognizes that the episodic nature and severity of some disabilities/conditions may impact a student’s ability to fulfill every established assignment due date.
What can I discuss with a student who has a disability?
You may discuss the student’s learning style and learning needs, and how you can work together to meet those needs. If a student voluntarily discloses his or her disability, you are welcome to ask more questions. However, it is not appropriate to ask, “What is your disability?” Privacy of student information should generally be handled according to guidelines of FERPA. Personal information of this nature should only be shared (if necessary) with those people within the institution who have an educational need-to-know.
How are accommodations approved?
Students complete a Request for Accommodations form and facilitate an interactive process with AR. AR staff will review in order to determine what is reasonable.
How do I know if a student has approved academic accommodations?
It is the student’s responsibility to share their approved Accommodation Letter with each of their faculty. The accommodation letter will outline approved accommodations, indicating the student has followed procedures in obtaining accommodations. Accommodations are implemented by faculty/instructors or departmental designates to ensure equal access to the academic environment. In some cases, instructors will collaborate with Accessibility Resources to implement reasonable accommodations.
How can I encourage students with approved accommodations to talk with me about their accommodations?
Announce at the beginning of the course that you are available to discuss instructional methods and approved course accommodations with students registered with Accessibility Resources. Additionally, you can share that all approved accommodations are unique to the student and discussing together will further support them in their course.
What do I do if I think an accommodation is inappropriate?
Faculty/department should contact AR if they think an accommodation poses a fundamental alteration to the program, activity or service. Students with disabilities must meet the same learning outcomes as those without disabilities.
What should I do if I think a student needs support from AR but has not shared an accommodation letter with me?
As you would for any struggling student, ask the student if there are any ways the student could be more supported. It may happen that the student discloses a disability, condition or barrier in this discussion, in which case you should provide contact information for AR. In addition, feel free to provide the student with a variety of options on our campus, including the Academic Success Center, Counseling Center or other resources you see fit. You may also consider submitting a CARE Team report.
Does AR provide accommodations for temporary injuries or illnesses?
AR can provide accommodations for temporary injuries or illnesses, including, but not limited to, broken bones, on-going illness, and concussions. Students with short-term illnesses, such as cold or flu, are not covered by the ADA, and should work directly with instructors to develop informal arrangements.
May I fail a student with a disability?
Yes. It is possible to fail a student with a disability. The laws mandate access to education, not guaranteed academic success. A student with a disability or functional need is required to meet the same academic, performance, behavioral, or technical standards as a student without a disability.
- If you have questions on accommodations or potential alternative while working with a student, please contact Accessibility Resources to collaborate
- If a student approaches you and shares a disability or functional need, suggest for them to complete the “Request for Accommodations” form with Accessibility Resources
- When a student discloses an approved accommodation letter, engage in a conversation with the student about plans to implement the approved accommodation(s) outlined in accommodation letter
- Include an AR syllabus statement in each syllabus to inform students of Accessibility Resources and accommodation process