Faculty & Staff Guidelines
Central Oregon Community College is committed to providing equal opportunity to higher education for academically qualified students without regard to a disability. Students and Faculty at COCC are encouraged to become familiar with their rights and responsibilities.
The Faculty of COCC is committed to the retention of students while promoting academic success. Students are recruited to the college with the understanding that the Faculty is responsive to their needs and will provide reasonable accommodations. Providing reasonable accommodations is a cooperative effort between COCC Faculty and Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD).
These guidelines are designed to help COCC Faculty understand how accommodations work and what parts of the accommodation process they are responsible for. The information in this guide is separated into chapters based on accommodation type. A table of contents is available at the bottom of the page.
Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD)
SSD has the responsibility for administering, reviewing, maintaining, and supervising a variety of support procedures and services for students in accordance with state and federal laws. When appropriate, SSD provides sign language interpreters, note takers, alternate format textbooks, assistance in working with instructors, and equipment loans. Faculty and SSD staff work cooperatively to decide when adjustments to academic requirements, testing formats and substitution of classes may be necessary.
Federal and state laws prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. For a copy of college policy and guidelines, contact the Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Officer, Diane Ross at 541-383-7218. It is the intent that Faculty of COCC go beyond legal requirements in fostering an atmosphere of enhanced learning.
From their initial contact with COCC, students with disabilities who need accommodations should contact the SSD office. It is the student's responsibility to acquire information concerning technological accommodations, resources on campus for parking, and housing services. Students are responsible for providing documentation, making timely requests for services and communicating with their professors regarding accommodations specific to the course.
Documentation of Disability
Assistance is available to students whose disabilities have been documented by the appropriate professional and in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Disability verification is solely the responsibility of the SSD office. The student is responsible for providing appropriate documentation. Faculty should not be involved in the process of documenting a disability. As a faculty member, you can assist students by directing them to SSDs resources, thereby easing the student's adjustment and assuring a more positive early college experience. If you do receive a letter from SSD, the student's disability has been documented.
Faculty and Staff Responsibilities
Please be sure that your syllabi contain this statement:
Students with documented disabilities who may need accommodations, who have any emergency medical information the instructor should know of, or who need special arrangements in the event of evacuation, should make an appointment with the instructor as early as possible, no later than the first week of the term. Students may also wish to contact the Services for Students with Disabilities Office in the Boyle Education Center, 541-383-7583.
Please bring this statement to the attention of your class at the first class meeting.
Notification Letter from SSD
Faculty will receive notification via a Letter of Accommodation from SSD, presented or emailed from the student. Please review the letter, submit any requested information, and consider the impact of the accommodations in the context of your class. Discuss any questions or concerns you have with the student and/or our office.
Information concerning a student's disability should be disclosed only to those with a legitimate "need to know." Sharing of information with other faculty and staff needs to be balanced with the student's interest while maintaining their privacy. Further disclosure should only be made with the express permission of the student or in consultation with appropriate SSD staff. Please do not discuss a student's disability or need for accommodations in front of other students.
All course web pages must be constructed in an accessible format. Web pages need to be accessible across multiple platforms (text-to-speech software, screen readers, screen enlargers etc.). If media is embedded into pages, descriptive text or captioning must also be provided. Making Web pages accessible is easier than many might think and usually only takes up little time. COCC has accessibility guidelines for everyone to follow. They are available at https://www.cocc.edu/accessibility/. For assistance regarding Web page accessibility, please see College Relations - Web usability best practices or contact eLearning & Academic Technology.
Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
Project ShIFT-Refocus for Course Design UDL
Refocus was created as a tool for examining the role the resource office can play in challenging stereotypes and creating truly equitable environments. You are invited to explore core values that anchor us to the goal of minimizing the need for accommodations and to examine practices that will influence the campus narrative around disability. Check out this short guide for restructuring courses with UDL in mind (see links below).
- A Short Guide to Inclusive, Learning-centered Course Design (PDF)
- Four Steps Backward Design (PDF)
- Outcomes Worksheet (PDF)
Nine Principles of Universal Design for Instruction (UDI)
Universal Design for Instruction (UDI) is an approach to teaching that consists of the proactive design and use of inclusive instructional strategies that benefit a broad range of learners including students with disabilities. The nine Principles of UDI provide a framework for college faculty to use when designing or revising instruction to be responsive to diverse student learners and to minimize the need for "special" accommodations and retrofitted changes to the learning environment. UDI operates on the premise that the planning and delivery of instruction, as well as the evaluation of learning can incorporate inclusive attributes that embrace diversity in learners without compromising academic standards. Please check out this link to view the 9 principles.