After completing a needs assessment with the student and after a thorough review of a student's documentation of disability, accommodations are established and may include one or more of the following academic services.
- Extended-time testing
- Distraction-reduced or minimum-distraction testing
- Test scribes and test readers
- Word processor for exams
- Note taker
- Sign language interpreting services
- Alternate print media
- Preferential seating
- Priority registration
- Tutoring referral
- Counseling referral
The specific support services or aids must be directly related to the educational limitations of the student's disabling condition and the educational program of the student. Accommodation is the means of assistance by which students are empowered to complete course work which diminishes the barrier of the disability and does not compromise the requirements of the course.
The Disability Support Services Office provides proctored testing accommodations for MacMurray College students who have documented disabilities, are eligible for testing accommodations, and are registered with the Disability Support Services Office. The Disability Support Services Office is committed to providing a secure and conducive testing environment for students while providing the following proctored testing accommodations.
- Extended-Time Testing: There are situations in which a reasonable test accommodation dictates extended time so that the student can complete a test. For many students with disabilities, taking tests within the normal class time may not result in a fair evaluation. The rule of thumb for adequate extended time is time and a half, but, under some circumstances, double time may be warranted.
- Distraction-Reduced or Minimum-Distraction Testing: For some students with disabilities, the distractions in an average classroom testing environment impedes their ability to complete exams. For these students, a distraction-reduced or minimum-distraction testing setting provides the accommodation they need. Instructors sometimes provide this accommodation and extended time testing in a room on site, or they will request assistance from the Disability Support Services Office, if needed.
- Test Scribes and Test Readers: Students who have specific physical or cognitive disabilities may require someone to physically write, type, or read their exams to them. This accommodation is almost always provided in the Disability Support Services Office with DSS staff.
Student's Testing Accommodation Responsibilities
- The student must have a signed Test Proctoring Contract on file with the Disability Support Services Office. This one-time document is completed at the student's intake meeting with DSS.
- For each test administered by Disability Support Services, the student must complete a Test Accommodations Request form at least two weeks before the scheduled test. This is necessary to schedule space and exam proctors. The request form is available to students online or in the DSS Office and should be submitted to the classroom instructor and the DSS Coordinator.
- If extended time testing will result in a schedule conflict with other classes, it is the student's responsibility to notify the instructor and Disability Support Services immediately to negotiate test taking alternatives.
- On the day of the test, students must be prepared to present their MacMurray ID or another photo ID.
Note-taking services may be provided as a reasonable and appropriate accommodation to students with a documented disability. Students are provided this service because they may be physically unable to take their own notes, may have a visual or hearing impairment, or may have a learning disability and need to receive information by auditory/visual means without the concern of note-taking accuracy. This service is not a substitute for class attendance but a means to supply or augment one's own class notes. Note takers do not serve as tutors, interpreters, or mediators between the student and instructor.
When students apply for disability services and their documentation and needs assessment determine that a note taker is an appropriate accommodation, they are given written information that identifies their academic accommodation. Students are expected to meet with their instructors to discuss their needs, and their instructor will then assist them in identifying competent, reliable classroom note takers. The recommendation for a note taker is then returned by the student to the Disability Support Services Office, and the selected note taker is contacted for orientation.
Within the first few class sessions, the student and note taker should meet to discuss the adequacy of the notes. If either party is unsatisfied with the arrangements, the arrangement should be terminated. Upon notification of a terminated arrangement, the Disability Support Services Office will assist the classroom instructor and student in arranging for another note taker.
It is the student's responsibility to collect notes in the Disability Support Services Office or from the note taker directly, depending on the agreement. Students receiving note taking services are expected to attend class except in case of illness or emergency and do not automatically receive notes if absent. Note takers will arrange for substitute note takers if they will be absent. Chronic absences from class by either party may lead to the suspension of note-taking services.
Sign Language Interpreting Services
Disability Support Services employs certified sign language interpreters who work as independent contractors. Although there is a severe shortage of certified sign language interpreters nationwide, Disability Support Services will make a diligent effort to ensure that interpreting services are provided in a timely manner to all eligible deaf/hard of hearing MacMurray students.
It is the responsibility of the deaf/hard of hearing student to notify Disability Support Services immediately regarding any schedule change. It is the student's responsibility to contact DSS more than 72 hours in advance (weekends do not apply toward this time period) when
- the student plans to miss class or activities;
- the student knows he/she will be late;
- the student is going to drop a class;
- the student is informed that a class is cancelled;
- the room, day, or time of the class is changed;
- the student is canceling any other activity for which an interpreter was requested and arranged;
- the student no longer needs the interpreting service.
The student will text or email Disability Support Services no less than 72 hours in advance if he/she needs to cancel any interpreting service(s). The only exception is for good cause, such as an emergency or other situation when the student could not know he/she would miss a class or an activity. The student must still email or text Disability Support Services as soon as possible in the case of good cause.
If a student misses a class or an educational activity without canceling interpreting service for that class or educational activity two (2) times without advance notification, except for good cause, the interpreting service(s) will be suspended. If this occurs the student must meet with the Disability Support Services Coordinator in order to have the service(s) and/or accommodation(s) reinstated.
A student who uses interpreting services must attend class regularly as well as arrive on time. If the interpreter is not there the student will wait 15 minutes and then contact the Disability Support Services Office to see if a substitute interpreter is available. If a student is going to be late, the interpreter will wait 15 minutes for classes that meet 90 minutes or less and 30 minutes for classes that meet for more than 90 minutes.
Interpreter's Role: An interpreter's role is to facilitate communication and convey all auditory and signed information so that both hearing and deaf individuals may fully interact.
- The interpreter's job is to faithfully transmit the spirit and content of the speaker, allowing the student and speaker to control the communication interaction.
- Faculty and staff do not ask the interpreter to perform other tasks, as it may interfere with the quality of communication provided and compromise the role of the interpreter.
- If an interpreter is needed to read and interpret test questions, those are the only functions the interpreter will perform.
- Interpreters are not subject tutors, classroom aides, or note takers. Any questions a student may have related to course content, test, and materials should be directed to the instructor.
- The student should inform the Disability Support Services Office as soon as possible if experiencing any problems with interpreting services.
- If additional college-related interpreting services are needed, they must be requested at least 72 hours in advance by completing the Interpreting Services Request form.
Alternate Print Media
The term Alternate Print Media refers to text materials that have been converted to an accessible format. Students who are approved for this accommodation should make an appointment with DSS staff at least six weeks prior to the start of the semester to discuss the process and their particular needs. Text conversion is labor-intensive and time-consuming and one in which the student, faculty, and DSS staff each have responsibilities, so planning ahead is important.
Professional and peer tutoring are available without charge to all MacMurray College Students in the Center for Learning Excellence. Disability Support Services will assist students with referrals, or students may contact the Center and request information about current services. Read about tutoring at MacMurray College here.
Students interested in receiving personal counseling will be referred to staff in Health Services (Office of Student Life). Students may receive up to 3 counseling sessions per academic year through a local counseling center a few blocks from the campus. Each session will require the student to pay a $5 co-payment. If it is determined that the student will need on-going counseling, the student will work with the counseling center to obtain services through their parent's insurance or their own personal insurance company.