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Faculty FAQs

  • Is it fair to give extra time to DSS students?
     Yes. Other students do not have a disability which significantly impedes their ability to process information quickly or causes problems with seeing or writing. So yes, it is fair as long as the accommodation does not fundamentally alter the nature of the course.
  • Can I give a student needing testing accommodations another form of the class exam?
    Yes. If the exam is not scheduled in the same time frame as the class exam, then you can reformat the exam to protect the integrity of the exam. However, the reformatted test would still need to cover the same information as the class exam.
  • What does DSS do to ensure that a student does not cheat on an exam?
    Students are only allowed to take into a private testing room those aides for the exam that have been approved and indicated by the instructor on the Testing Accommodation Request Form (see Appendix B). It is imperative that this form be filled out in detail and returned to the Disability Support Services Office as soon as possible after the student has given it to you. In addition, all bluebooks, scantrons, blank paper and dictionaries are closely examined to ensure that nothing is written on them. Students are not allowed to take book bags, fanny packs, purses or other such items into the testing room unless a proctor is present in the room to ensure that these items are not accessed during the exam.
  • What happens if a student is suspected of cheating?
    A DSS staff member will immediately address the situation and thoroughly document the circumstances. Any evidence will be confiscated and DSS will immediately attempt to contact the professor. The details will be presented to the professor who will decide whether or not the student should be allowed to complete the exam and what further action will be taken. All students are held to the Student Conduct Code, and faculty are encouraged to treat all students the same when a violation occurs.
  • What happens if a DSS student causes frequent unwarranted classroom disruptions?
    Irregardless of a student's disability, they are held to the same Student Conduct Code as everyone else. Faculty are encouraged to consult with DSS for possible intervention. If this doesn't work, then the Dean of Students Office should be promptly consulted.
  • My course requires participation & attendance. What do I do with DSS student absences?
    If classroom attendance and participation are deemed to be essential components of your class and it is written as such in your syllabus, then all students have to be held to the same standard. It is the hope of the DSS office that faculty will work with students who must miss occasional classes for disability reasons.
  • I have quizzes daily in my class. Do all of my quizzes need to be given through DSS?
    It really depends on the student and the type of disability. Many students can complete a simple five minute quiz in the classroom setting. However, some cannot and will need to arrange for DSS to administer the quizzes.
  • I have pop quizzes throughout the semester, what is the protocol for this?

    We have worked previously with professors in administering pop quizzes in our facility. The following are some options of what we have done in the past for pop quizzes:

    1. Student can take the pop quiz before the class begins in our office with time extension and can make it back in  time for lecture. Some professors may be okay with notifying the student ahead of time (about an hour or 30minutes before class begins) in to inform them there is a pop quiz waiting for them at the DSS.
    1. Students check in daily with our office by coming in or calling in about 10-15 minutes prior to class to see if there is a pop quiz for them here.
    1. If pop quizzes are to be given at the end of class, the student can head over to our office as the class begins to take the quiz.
    1. Professors will notify the student the day of and allow them to complete it at any time during the day.
  • I have a no makeup exam policy. Must I allow a DSS student make up an exam?
    Yes. If a student misses an exam for disability related reasons, they are legally entitled to a makeup exam.
  • I am unsure of the dates of my exams/quizzes for the semester. Should I notify DSS?
    Facutly members may make note of this on the blue Testing Accommodation Form by stating that the exam/quiz dates are "tentative" or "TBD". It is the student's responsibility to reserve with the DSS office 7 days prior to the official exam/quiz date. Once the dates are announced, students are required to reserve as soon as possible.
  • I do not allow students to record my lectures. Are DSS students legally entitled to do so?
    Yes. However, you can require that all tapes be returned to you at the end of the semester or that they be destroyed. Faculty members can request that a student complete a Tape Recording/Transcript Services Contract.
  • How do I know what accommodations a student is eligible for?
    You will receive a Disability Support Services Approved Support Services form (see Appendix B) from each student with a disability enrolled in your course who requires accommodations.
  • Should I provide accommodations which are not on the sheet?
    You are only required to provide those accommodations listed on the sheet. However, there may be cases where a student's disability changes and thus requires an accommodation not on the Approved Support Services form (see Appendix B). In these cases, always consult with DSS on the appropriateness of a requested accommodation. If you decide to provide an accommodation not approved through DSS, then that is your individual choice.
  • What about ESL students? Do they require extra time?
    You are not required to provide extended time for in-class exams to ESL students unless they have a documented disability which requires it.
  • What happens if I decide not to allow a student a DSS approved accommodation?
    Students will be provided with all accommodations approved through DSS unless the instructor can prove an accommodation will fundamentally alter the nature of a course or program. Students do reserve the right to file a formal complaint with the Office of Civil Rights if denied reasonable accommodations. In addition, there have been cases where students have filed for punitive damages against a faculty member.
  • What information should I include about DSS on my class syllabus?

    It is stongly recommended that the following statement be placed on each class syllabus:

    Students with disabilities who require academic accommodations must be approved for services by providing appropriate and recent documentation to the Office of Disability Support Services (DSS). This office is located in Administrative Building 4300 and can be contacted by phone at (760) 750-4905 or by email at  Students authorized by DSS to receive accommodations should meet with me during my office hours or, in a more confidential setting, to discuss any accommodation related matters.