The DSS office is designed to assist faculty as well. If you have any questions stop by our office in West 207 or contact: Alma Osorio, Assistant Director of Student Development, via email or (425) 739-8166.
For a student to receive services related to disability at LWIT they must first:
Identify themselves to any college employee
Be referred to the Disability Support Services (DSS) office
Once at the DSS office they must:
Have an intake interview with DSS
Provide appropriate documentation of the disability
Complete a "Request for Services" with the DSS staff
The DSS office will then generate an Authorization Letter informing the student's instructors of the academic adjustments needed to negate the effect of the disability in the class room. The Authorization Letter is emailed to each instructor.
The student should also make appointment or visit during office hours to discuss with the instructor the details of how the adjustments will be provided in each specific class.
Whenever an instructor has questions or concerns regarding the adjustments, the instructor should provide the adjustments but immediately contact the DSS office via email or ext. 8166 from any campus phone.
Authorization Letters are a list of approved Academic Adjustments and/or Auxilary Aids for the student. Approval for adjustments is made by the LWIT Disability Support Services Coordinator.
"Academic Adjustments" in college programs and services are modifications of those programs, policies, practices, and procedures that enable qualified students with a disability to have an equal opportunity to benefit from and have access to college programs and services and providing auxiliary aids and services.
Here are some explanations of listed academic adjustments stated in Authorization Letters:
Extended time on tests
"Extended time" means that students should be allowed the time needed to complete the exam. Students will receive either 1.5 or double time; instructors should not involve themselves in determining the length of exam. Because this creates an "open ending" time this takes to administer tests, DSS offers as a service to the faculty the proctoring of exams that involve additional time.
"Exams" involves any examination format (whether called a quiz, test, or exam) which results in a grade that will be a factor in the final grade awarded in a class.
Testing in a reduced distracting environment
A student with attention issues must be tested in an environment which is as free of distracting visual and auditory elements to this student as possible. Instructors who are proctoring their own exams must also provide this adjustment if it appears in the Authorization Letter.
Identification of a notetaker
The instructor is responsible for identifying another student in the class who is willing to take notes for the student with a disability. The student with a disability will have a NCR (no carbon requirement) notebook for the notetaker to use. If the instructor cannot find a student to serve as a notetaker, the instructor should contact the DSS office as quickly as possible. (NOTE: the student should NOT be told to find the note taker on their own). Notetakers receive $50 at the end of the quarter.
Use of a tape/digital recorder
The use of a tape/digital recorder, whether to record the entire class or portions of it, must be permitted.
Use of a laptop
The use of laptop computer to take notes or to do in-class assignments must be permitted. If the computer has Internet capability, the instructor has the right to set parameters as to whether and to what extent the student can utilize this aspect of the computer during class time.
Flexibility in attendance requirements as appropriate
Student will chronic health problems which might have unexpected, acute episodes should not be penalized for simply missing class. However, if the class involves in-class group participation, such flexibility may not be possible. Only those absences directly related to the condition are affected by this adjustment. Even when the absences are directly related to the condition, instructors should contact the DSS Office if they believe the absences are going to prevent the student from being successful in the class.
Use of a scribe or reader as needed
A scribe is someone who writes out the answers dictated by the student. A reader is someone who reads print material aloud to the student. Instructors who are proctoring their own exams must also provide these adjustments.
Oral testing as appropriate
There are certain learning disabilities that affect written expression. Such students are much better at demonstrating their mastery of the instructional material if they are allowed to do so in an oral format.
Services of an ASL interpreter
Deaf and profoundly hard of hearing students rely on American Sign Language interpreters to translate English into ASL for they can understand the information. They also voice in English what the deaf or profoundly hard of hearing student signs to them. There is set protocol on how to work with interpreters. Unless instructors have had training in working with hearing impaired individuals and interpreters, they should contact the DSS office to set up one-on-one training on the protocol.
Printed materials in alternative electionic format or enlarged print
Individuals with sight impairments may need to use speech recognition software to access printed information that other students can read. This includes textbooks, instructional packets, and class handouts. The DSS Office will take the lead in trying to obtain the electronic format from publishers. Instructors should contact the DSS Office if they need assistance in converting other instructional materials into electronic format.
Other visually impaired individuals prefer to use enlarged font materials. Again, if instructors need assistance in creating such materials, they need to contact the DSS Office as soon as possible.
Use of a FM Loop System
Some individuals benefit from using a FM Loop system. This consists of a small microphone worn by the instructor with a power pack. The student wears a hearing device and has a receiving unit which allows adjusting the volume of the incoming sound. The DSS Office checks out the FM Loop system to the student for the academic quarter.