Information & Resources
48 Hour Testing Pre-Notification
As per our policy we make all of our students aware at the beginning of each semester the time span within which tests must be scheduled, listed as item 3 on the Student Responsibility Acknowledgement form they each have to sign:
“If I receive testing accommodations arranged through AES, I will schedule examinations with this office not later than two business days (48 business hours) before the examination date. If I have extenuating circumstances, I will notify AES as soon as possible.”
This notice is to inform you that our policy will now be strictly enforced. All tests scheduled by students must be done within 48 hours of the test time. Students will not be permitted to schedule tests after business hours via phone, on the day of the exam or the day before. If a student does come to schedule an exam in person and it is beyond the 48 hour period, they will be advised to schedule the rest of their tests in advance. Any tests not scheduled in advance and within our 48 business hour window will not be proctored by Adaptive Educational Services, their only option will be to take the test in class with the professor.
Our business hours are Monday through Thursday from (7 am until 7pm) and Friday from (7 am until 5 pm). We are open for common finals and classes scheduled on weekends. All tests scheduled in person or via phone will now come with an e-mail confirmation/receipt as proof of you scheduling the exam. If you have any further questions, comments or concerns associated with this policy, please feel free to respond to this email or call us directly at 317-274-3241.
What does an IUPUI faculty member need to know about students with disabilities?
A new law – the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act will took effect on January 1, 2009. This law amends the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). Critical parts for post secondary education include expanding and clarifying definitions of disabilities which had been whittled away by a number of court decisions since 1990. The bill was approved unanimously by Congress and signed by President Bush. This new legislation applies to universities. AES (Adaptive Educational Services) is the IUPUI office (Indianapolis and Columbus) that is authorized to work with and provide services to students with disabilities except in cases of discrimination which are handled by the campus Officer for Equal Opportunity.
The laws that govern post secondary education are significantly different from those at K through 12 where the school system has the responsibility to do everything for the student. At the post secondary level, students have the responsibility to provide documentation, request accommodations, contact faculty members, and follow-through on deadlines, assignments, testing schedules. Furthermore, post secondary institutions do not have to make accommodations such as waivers or substitutions, if in the thoughtful opinion of the unit offering a major, minor, concentration or degree, such changes fundamentally alter the nature of the program. So for instance, an engineering student's request to have all math requirements above college algebra waived or have logic serve as a substitute will not be acceptable since it would fundamentally alter the nature of the engineering program. On the other hand, a substitution of cultural classes for a foreign language requirement for a biology major might be acceptable since the foreign language requirement is not critical to the major.
For most faculty members the critical issues relate to students in their classes who fall into one of four categories: a student who requests accommodations (or a communication comes from AES requesting them in the name of the student), a student who, after an examination, paper deadline or even after the end of the semester, requests changes in grades or a chance to redo work based on their disabilities, a student in one of your classes who exhibits behavior suggesting the need for services, and finally a student receiving accommodations who breaks a campus rule, is disruptive or exhibits inappropriate behavior. It is useful to indicate on the syllabus that you will work with students with disabilities and that they should contact you as early as possible to make appropriate arrangements.
If a student approaches you about an accommodation and if you have any questions about the appropriateness of the accommodations or the procedures, contact AES. Remember appropriate accommodations are not a request, but a matter mandated by law.
Accommodations frequently revolve around testing. Due to a disability, a student may be entitled to time and a half (or more) on an examination. AES offers special testing facilities so that such a student can have the extra time on an examination or other accommodations without being distracting to others in the class. However, a faculty member may chose to have a student take the exam in the regular classroom, though there are situations where this would not allow for accommodations.
Reasons for students getting extra time or special separate facilities for test-taking include: physical issues in reading the questions or writing the answers to exam questions, the need for special equipment to record answers; the need for a distraction-reduced environment to take examinations. Students with mobility impairments may require frequent breaks to avoid pain associated with prolonged sitting while students with an attention disorder may need breaks to refocus. This service is not available for make-up tests for students who are not AES clients or not receiving testing accommodations for that class. AES does not do the scheduling or remind students of their exams, those tasks are the responsibility of the student. AES proctors examinations and ensures that the timing is such that other students in the class do not receive the questions on the examination. AES proctors follow strict guidelines including instructions from the faculty on what may be used such as a textbook or that no aids may be used. Complete instructions on the role of faculty members regarding test accommodations are available at AES’ office.
NOTE: AES currently requires faculty either to deliver exams to AES' office or e-mail the exam and the examination instructions to firstname.lastname@example.org. AES NO LONGER picks up examinations, but the office does return the exams according to the faculty's instructions.
To facilitate working with a student with disabilities, a faculty member can do one of two things or even both. Faculty may include on their syllabi a statement about their willingness to work with students with disabilities and invite them to make an appointment. The same can be done with a brief statement on the first or second day of class once the student population of the class has settled down – after add and drop perhaps.
**RECOMMENDED LANGUAGE TO BE INCLUDED ON THE COURSE SYLLABUS FOR STUDENTS NEEDING ACCOMMODATION**
Students needing accommodations because of disability will need to register with Adaptive Educational Services and complete the appropriate forms issued by AES before accommodations will be given. The AES office is located in Taylor Hall, UC 100. You can also reach the office by calling 274-3241.
Adaptive Educational Services: Adaptive Educational Services (AES) provides accommodations for students with special challenges or disabilities that may affect their classroom performance. If you are eligible you may register with AES by calling 274-3241 and making an appointment; or visiting them in Taylor Hall, UC Suite 100. Visit http://aes.iupui.edu/ for more information.
Requests for Post-Event Accommodations
No student with a disability is entitled to post test or post paper deadline accommodations. In other words, if a student does not request accommodations prior to the test for whatever reason, a student may not after the fact get accommodations such as changing a grade, dropping a test, or retaking the test. This is generally true of requests to change grades or withdraw students after the end of the semester. This is unfair to other students and not in the spirit of the law.
Disruptive Student Behavior
If a student is disruptive in class, this matter needs to be taken to the Dean of Students with appropriate paperwork filed. In some cases, the behavior is the result of a disability and can be corrected by medication prescribed by the student's doctor. A faculty member's responsibility is to all students in a class and providing a good learning environment is critical. It is useful to involve AES in discussions related to such behavior since the office has a long and positive record of helping both student and faculty to resolve such issues. In the final analysis, however, if the matter cannot be resolved, the student may have to be administratively removed from the class. If a student cannot abide by the codes of conduct which allow successful learning and academic discourse, the student is not qualified to attend.
A student who displays behavior that suggests a need for help
This is one the most difficult issues for instructors. Poor performance may result from a vast number of issues ranging from a disability to lack of sleep, lack of incentive, too many obligations, fears, depression, personal problems, poor background in a subject, or total disinterest. And it is often difficult to distinguish which of these factors is at work. Whenever possible a faculty member should discuss the matter with the student privately. Both AES and CAPS can be of service although both are limited by laws regarding privacy. Faculty, especially those in classes where journaling is a part of the curriculum, should not ignore comments that suggest suicide or violence. Often the best strategy is to urge the student to see AES or CAPS staff. It also helps for the faculty to discuss the matter with their own dean of students or with AES. Finally, if the behavior becomes truly erratic or threatening, the campus police and the Behavioral Consultation Student Team should be called immediately.
Other issues related to working with students with disabilities
The diagnosis and nature of a student's disability is private information. Some students don't mind sharing but others choose not to discuss their disabilities especially if as in a case such as AIDs, the illness has social stigmas attached. What is acceptable, in fact, often critical is a discussion of functional limitations. Information about functional limitations or actual information about a disability if shared by a student with faculty is still private and must not be shared with other faculty or with other students. This would constitute a violation of privacy and the need to know rules that govern the university. Please respect a student's privacy; if a student chooses to disclose a disability that is the student's decision; it is not acceptable for a faculty member or staff member to disclose a student's disability without written permission from the student.
Alternate Ways of Presenting Information and Testing Knowledge and Skills
Research over the last thirty or forty years led by individuals such as Professor Howard Gardner of Harvard, seems to indicate that learning styles vary significantly among equally intelligent individuals but that tests favoring one style or another, may disadvantage one student over another. While this is not the place to discuss how to develop a class designed to reach a broader range of learning styles, AES and the Center for Teaching and Learning (part of the Consortium for Learning and Scholarship), as well ample literature on the web, address rethinking how to present material and test for student mastery of knowledge and skills.
What disabilities are covered by current federal laws?
The long standing legal definitions which determined AES' services, established by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, are being expanded by a new law, the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008, signed by President Bush. This new law went into effect on January 1, 2009. This act (ADAAA) was passed unanimously by Congress to redress narrow judicial decisions which had limited the scope of the ADA. The most significant changes for college students are the following:
- Defines major life activities (but not limited to) seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, performing manual tasks, taking care of yourself, bending, breathing, speaking, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working;
- Also defines major life activities as the functioning of (but not limited to) the working of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive systems;
- States that the term disability should be construed to provide the broadest coverage to individuals;
- States that an impairment that substantially limits one major life function does not need to limit other major life activities to be considered a disability;
- Clarifies the inclusion of individuals with episodic limitations and those in remission if when active those conditions would have substantially limited a major life function;
- Includes individuals with mitigating measures that ameliorate the condition such as glasses mitigate the degree of vision for those legally blind for example;
- States that employers cannot discriminate against otherwise qualified individuals based on a physical or mental disability;
- Retains the concept of an individual perceived to have a disability as covered by the law;
- Does not cover transitory impairments of less than 6 months such as a broken leg;
- Include but are not limited to physical disabilities such as blindness, hearing loss, limited mobility, etc. chronic diseases, mental health disorders, Attention Deficit Disorders (ADD), Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), learning disorders.