Guidelines for Academic Achievement’s Approval of Student Accommodations and Adjustments

Definitions

  • Accommodations – Legally mandated modifications, alterations, aids, and/or services that give a student with a documented disability equal access to higher education.

  • Adjustments – Short-term changes to a student’s schedule, coursework, attendance, or expectations due to a life interruption

Purpose

UNW desires to meet the needs of all learners. Students with a documented disability initiate contact with Disability Services.  Disability Services works directly with students through an interactive process to determine reasonable accommodations that remove barriers and provide equal access to learning and educational experiences.  Although no legal mandate has yet been established, virtual attendance is now a reasonable accommodation to be considered given UNW’s lecture capture technology and our commitment to serving students well.

Short-term adjustments are given when students have a life event that interrupts their educational routine.  This could be due to COVID-19, injury, car accident, death in the family, military activation, etc.  UNW practice for these types of student needs has been to provide temporary adjustments of up to two weeks and then re-evaluate.

Guidelines

Working through established procedures, including an interactive process, students with documentation of a disability can apply for semester-long attendance accommodations through Disability Services, including virtual learning. Approval will be determined through the Student Support Team (SST) committee.

Students may be approved for other COVID-related adjustments with supporting documentation. This too will be evaluated through an interactive process between the student and Academic Achievement. Academic Affairs has commissioned a COVID-19 Academic Advisory Team to determine approval.  They are tasked to demonstrate commitment to meeting students’ needs to safely maintain progress towards graduation. 

Important Note: Faculty should continue to reach out to students who are struggling and connect them with Academic Achievement for resources and support (e.g., subject tutors, writing tutors, academic coaches). Faculty will notify Joint Intervention if they are concerned about a student’s performance (e.g., missing class for one week, lack of activity on Moodle, missing assignments, etc.).  The “Refer a student” link is available at the top of each Moodle Course Home page.

The following guidelines will govern Academic Achievement’s approval of student accommodations and adjustments:

  1. According to the standards established in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), accommodations are legally required to provide individuals with a documented disability equal access to higher education.

  2. Students who request adjustments due to COVID-19 are required to complete an application stating what the requested adjustments are along with appropriate supporting documentation. After application and documentation are received, an Academic Achievement team member will meet with the student for an interactive evaluation of needs.

  3. Faculty with international students who remain in their home country to take UNW courses remotely (as confirmed by Academic Achievement) need to support these students in their remote learning (such as making Lecture Capture recordings available).

  4. Short-term adjustments (typically 1-2 weeks) will require supporting documentation and will be granted by Academic Achievement for non-ADA reasons (e.g., isolation, injuries, medical procedures, bereavement, etc.). Official notice of adjustments will be sent to professors and necessary support staff.