The Office for Academic Success (OAS) provides services and coordinates academic accommodations for students with disabilities.
Appropriate and reasonable accommodations will be discussed with students and when approved, assistance with arranging those accommodations will be provided. Note: students are not required to disclose a disability to faculty unless they will be requesting accommodation(s).
When a student is approved for reasonable accommodation(s), the OAS will prepare letters notifying appropriate faculty and staff of the accommodations that have been approved based on the student’s application. It is the student's responsibility to privately speak with their instructors (during office hours) who have been notified by the OAS at his/her request about particular needs and to make the arrangements to receive them. If faculty or staff has questions, they may contact the Coordinator of OAS for clarification.
In order to continue to receive accommodations, a student must meet with Coordinator of OAS before each academic term that they are enrolled at the university. However, students do not have to submit new documentation for approved accommodations every term when meeting with the Coordinator of OAS, unless he/she is requesting additional or different accommodations.
A student is responsible for following the procedures established by Salus University to obtain reasonable accommodation(s). A student who does not follow these procedures is not permitted to receive academic accommodations and may not directly petition the course instructor(s) for accommodations.
Q: What is a disability?
A: According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, a disability is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. Major life activities related to education include, but are not limited to, walking, sleeping, eating, learning, reading, writing, thinking, processing, hearing, and seeing.
Q: What is an accommodation?
A: An accommodation is an adjustment made to a policy and/or
academic environment to ensure students with temporary or permanent disabilities have access to course materials, instruction, information, equipment, programs, activities, and facilities.
Q: Who is responsible for determining appropriate accommodations at Salus University?
A: The Office for Academic Success (OAS) is the office on campus that determines appropriate accommodations. It is contrary to university policy for individual faculty members, programs, or departments to provide accommodations not approved by OAS.
Q: How are accommodations requested and decisions about accommodations made?
A: Students requesting accommodations are required to complete the “Initial Request for Accommodations” form and supporting documentation that meets the university’s documentation guidelines. The form and guidelines are available on MySalus. OAS bases decisions about accommodations on information submitted by individual students, program technical standards and essential requirements documents, interpretation of relevant law, university policies, and when appropriate, consultation with faculty.
Q: Are all students with disabilities approved for accommodations?
A: No, it is very likely that many students have chosen not to disclose their disability or disabilities to OAS. Others may have disclosed to OAS but chosen not to request accommodations. Finally, some students may have submitted a request for accommodations but not met the eligibility criteria for services.
Q: Are faculty required to lower the standards of a required assignment or examination because the student has a disability?
A: No. Reasonable accommodations are approved to ensure meaningful access to a student’s educational program. The goal is to give the student the same level of opportunity to be academically successful as a student without a disability. Accommodations are not designed to ensure success, only opportunity.
Q: If a student discloses a disability to a member of the faculty or staff, what should s/he do?
A: If a student discloses a disability to faculty or staff, it is their responsibility to
- speak to the student privately to ensure that they are aware that Salus University has an accommodations request process and that the process begins when the student contacts OAS or the Dean of Student Affairs
- document that you acknowledged the student’s disclosure and directed them to contact OAS by sending the student an email and copying OAS at email@example.com.
Q: Can faculty ask a student about their disability?
A: Asking a student whether they have a disability or seeking additional information about a disclosed disability is not permitted. It is an individual student’s choice whether to disclose the presence and/or nature of a disability. The faculty member’s responsibility is to inform the student that Salus University has an accommodations process, that contacting OAS is the first step in that process, and that OAS or the Dean of Student Affairs can answer any questions that the student may have regarding disability and accessibility.
Q: Are faculty required to make a statement about disabilities or provide information about accommodations to students at the start of each term?
A: The syllabus for every class at Salus University should include the university approved statement regarding ADA compliance, disabilities, and accommodations.
Q: How do faculty know the student has a disability and needs accommodations?
A: If accommodations have been approved by OAS, appropriate faculty will receive notice directly from OAS. Students are also emailed a copy of each notice. If a student reports that they have been approved for accommodations, but the professor of record for the course has not received notice from OAS, s/he should contact OAS immediately regardless of whether the student provides the professor with a copy of a notice. Accommodations should be provided only after the professor of record has received official notice of approval from OAS.
Q: If a student has been approved for accommodations, how do faculty know the specific accommodations to provide?
A: Each notice describes the specific accommodations approved for that student. If the professor of record has not received a notice for a specific student for a specific class, it is likely that no accommodations have been authorized.
Q: What types of accommodations may be approved for students with disabilities?
A: OAS classifies accommodations into three categories
- Written exam accommodations
- Classroom and/or lab accommodations
- Clinical accommodations
Q: How are written examination accommodations provided at Salus University?
A: The Academic Testing Service (ATS) schedules and administers written exams for students who have been approved for written examination accommodations by OAS. The ATS, like OAS, is a unit of the Office of Student Affairs, and is located in Suite W103. ATS administers exams in the testing center of the Learning Resource Center (LRC). The coordinator of ATS receives notice of approved written exam accommodations and will contact you to arrange to obtain a copy of each written exam to be administered with accommodations. After the exam administration, the completed exam will be returned to you for scoring.
Q: Who is responsible for providing written exams utilizing special formatting when approved as part of an accommodation?
A: If a modification to the standard format of the exam has been approved as an accommodation, for example use of an enlarged font, faculty are responsible for providing the properly formatted exam to ATS. If a faculty member needs assistance in preparing a written exam, s/he should contact their department or program office. ATS does not have the resources to prepare written examinations. If you have questions about the approved accommodations, contact OAS.
Q: Are written exams safe with ATS? Will ATS’ examination administration protect the integrity of the course?
A: ATS has developed secure procedures for getting exams from faculty and returning them once the student has taken the exam. While exams are in ATS custody, they are kept in a locked cabinet until administered. While students are taking the exam, they are supervised by proctors using live and video monitoring.
Q: What types of classroom/lab accommodations are available at Salus and who is responsible for providing approved classroom/lab accommodations?
A: Accommodations such as provision of handouts in enlarged font or of printed PowerPoint slides are provided by faculty. OAS will work arranges some types of accommodations, such as the use of specific equipment or assistive personnel or the provision of classroom/lab note takers. It is the responsibility of members of the faculty to actively participate as required to provide the accommodation and to promptly report problems to OAS.
Q: For the purposes of accommodations, are quizzes considered a written examination or a classroom activity?
A: Short quizzes administered during a portion of a regular class period are considered classroom/lab accommodations. Most students who are approved for additional time and/or private room written exam accommodations choose not to seek similar accommodations for classroom quizzes. However, it is possible that such accommodations for quizzes may be approved. If a student is approved for this type of accommodation, you will be notified. It is more likely that a student may be approved for a specific format for classroom quizzes, such as enlarged font or high contrast printing. Faculty are responsible for providing quizzes in the proper accommodated format.
Q: Are students entitled to a copy of faculty notes and overheads?
A: Faculty are required to provide notes, slides, overheads, etc. only if specifically listed as an approved accommodation in a student’s accommodation notice.
Q: May students be approved for accommodations in a clinical setting?
A: Yes. Although much less commonly requested and approved than classroom/lab or written exam accommodations, clinical accommodations may be approved when appropriate. Given the specialized nature of the courses of study at Salus, OAS consults with members of the faculty regarding the potential impact of accommodations in the clinical setting as part of the request review process.
Q: Is the presence of a service animal in the classroom, lab, or clinic a possible accommodation?
A: Service animals are not considered accommodations. Students are required to notify the university prior to bringing a service animal on campus and to document that the dog or miniature horse is healthy, licensed, and trained. However, the law protecting service animals and their handlers does not require students to request OAS approval. Additional information regarding service animals on campus is available in a separate OAS document and in published university policy.
Q: What recourse do faculty and students have if they disagree about requested and/or approved accommodations?
A: If you have any questions or concerns about a requested and/or approved accommodation, please contact OAS.
Accommodations are made on a case-by-case basis. Students should adhere to the following steps in order to receive services through the OAS.
- The student must request services by submitting a request for accommodations. A complete request includes:
- The Accommodation Request for Services Application (PDF) available to Salus University students in the OAS area of the Student Affairs section of MySalus
- Supporting documentation that meets the university disability documentation guidelines that is sufficient to support the requested accommodation(s) based on the disability
- There are several options for submitting requests and documentation:
- Securely fax the documentation to OAS: 215-780-1298
- Using your Salus University email account, email the request application and documentation as attachments to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Deliver your materials in person to the OAS Coordinator or the Dean of Student Affairs
- Mail (USPS) or ship (UPS, FedEx, etc.) the documentation to:
Office for Academic Success
Salus University, W103J
8360 Old York Road
Elkins Park, PA 19027
- Receipt of submitted materials will be acknowledged by email and students will be invited to schedule an in-take meeting with the OAS coordinator. Although a meeting is not required for most students, it is recommended. A meeting with the OAS coordinator affords the student and coordinator an opportunity to ask questions and share information. During the meeting, students should be prepared to discuss their disability, and how it impacts his/her ability to learn at Salus University.
- If the OAS coordinator feels that a meeting is necessary, the student will be notified and asked to schedule an appointment if they have not already done so.
NOTE: Students are responsible for reviewing the policies and procedures regarding the provisions of accommodations, regardless of whether they choose to meet with the OAS coordinator. This information is available in the student handbook and on the OAS website.
- The student’s request will be reviewed and the student will be notified, in writing, of the status of his/her application.