The following are some types of academic accommodations available at Central Piedmont. We offer more as well. Contact Disability and Access Services to learn more about the types of accommodations we offer and for guidance on how to apply a specific accommodation.
Attendance leniency is an accommodation that is activated by an attendance leniency plan. If you have an accommodation for attendance leniency, you would submit a normal accommodation form that will state the attendance leniency accommodation. However, the attendance leniency plan will be submitted as a different form. The plan is designed to help with a conversation about what steps will occur as you continue to miss class as a result of the disability. The plan is not designed to get around college policies about attendance unless the implications of the disability leave no other reasonable option. As with all accommodations, the attendance leniency plan is not retroactive and should be initiated at the start of the class for the best results.
Audio Format for Tests
Audio format is also known as read-aloud, read out loud, reader, or text-to-speech. The function is to make information audible. If you have an accommodation for audio format for tests, there are many ways to implement it, including having another person read aloud to you, you could use text-to-speech software, or you could record or have another person pre-record the spoken information so you can play and replay the recording as needed. Audio format for tests is a testing accommodation. You may use similar accommodations or study techniques to obtain audio format when studying or in a classroom setting. One classroom accommodation that serves this purpose is the audio recorder accommodation, which allows you to use a device to record lectures in class.
Extended time is usually granted for tasks that would ordinarily adopt a timer, such as a test or quiz. The accommodation is not usually granted for tasks that adopt a due date rather than a timer, such as homework or projects. If you have an accommodation for extended time, it is implemented by determining the original amount of time you have to complete a task and multiplying that time by the extension listed in the accommodation. The formula for extended time is regular task time multiplied by the extension. For example, if you have double time (2x) for a task, and other students are expected to complete the task in one hour, then you would get two hours because 1 hour (regular time) multiplied by 2 (the double time extension) equals 2 hours.
Interpreter (Sign Language)
An interpreter is a person who assists with conversation between people who use different languages. A hearing person's inability to understand the language of another hearing person who is speaking a different language is not inherently a disability. Disability and Access Services provides accommodations to students who are deaf or hard of hearing. When "interpreter" is listed on the accommodation form, it is indicative of a sign language interpreter who assists with conversations between the hearing and the deaf. Sign language interpreting at the college is usually facilitated through American Sign Language. To provide effective communication, the sign language interpreter may elect to use other methods.
As with all accommodations, the interpreter is there to remove a barrier, specifically those related to communication. If two people speak or sign the same language, an interpreter is not required. The interpreter is not a personal care attendant. If you have an accommodation for sign language interpreting, the interpreter is not responsible for interacting on behalf of you or the instructor. However, an instructor's direct communication with an interpreter can be beneficial to you. This might include giving the interpreter a lesson plan ahead of schedule or reviewing the spelling and meaning of any technical vocabulary.
Personal Care Attendant
If you have an accommodation for a personal care attendant, they join you in your day-to-day activities to mediate some of the difficulties posed by these activities. The personal care attendant's specific functions are based your functional limitations. For example, if your are both in a wheelchair and without fine motor skills, you may have a personal care attendant help you get dressed or open doors.
In an academic setting, a personal care attendant may take notes or type on the student's behalf. For another example, if the student has an intellectual disability, it may be difficult to make proper or healthy decisions. The personal care attendant, in this situation, might practice a step-by-step process for decision-making with them or may assist in conversations where they have to make decisions. The student is still primarily responsible for making the decision, but the personal care attendant ensures they understand what is being asked, and helps them identify benefits and risks. In an academic setting, the personal care attendant may go to an advising meeting with them or implement a study plan so they are prepared for situations where the personal care attendant may not be present. To compare and contrast these two examples, the personal care attendant who helps with fine motor skills does not need to help with decision-making. The student simply makes a request of what they want to do and the personal care attendant carries out the action. It is also possible that they will have functional limitations from both examples — the personal care attendant would serve all of the related functions.
The personal care attendant is not hired by the college nor issued by Disability and Access Services. In fact, the personal care attendant can be anyone that the student agrees to have follow them through their academic process. There may be one personal care attendant or there may be several. The student and the personal care attendant will sign an agreement form to highlight the expectations of the personal care attendant's role in relationship to the college policies and to identify who is allowed to be a personal care attendant for them at the college. The personal care attendant is listed on the accommodation form.
If you have an accommodation for scribing, another person writes or types on your behalf. Dictation is a function where you speak to a computer that then types what it hears. Dictation is also known as speech-to-text. The accommodation form would list scribe and dictation together as the same accommodation because you might use either method to produce responses. There may be many people who intermittently function as a scribe, such as a personal care attendant or a proctor in Disability and Access Services. There is not one specific person designated for this task. In any function, the scribe is there to record your thoughts and responses, but not to think or respond on your behalf.
What to Expect with Accommodations
As you begin your transition to college, we advise you to build a mindset around independence and self-advocacy. Unlike high school, college will be centered around personal decision-making, time-management, planning, and organization. We are here to guide and assist in this new milestone. The following provides information on what to expect when requesting accommodations.
How to Prepare and What You Will Need to Know
We strongly encourage you to read Central Piedmont's Accommodations Requests for Persons with Disabilities Policy and maintain consistent communication with Disability and Access Services as well as your instructors. Reach out to Disability and Access Services for additional guidance on accommodations.
When you report a disability, the accommodations that are considered reasonable are approved for you to use in each course. You further choose to use the approved accommodations by submitting an accommodation form to the instructor. (We encourage you to independently submit the form in a timely manner). Even after a form is submitted to the instructor, you can elect to deny use of an accommodation for a specific task or assignment.
Accommodations are not retroactive. If you do not use an accommodation for a task that one could be used for, you are not entitled to receive an additional attempt.
Accommodations are categorized on the accommodation form by the situation or setting that would be reasonable for the accommodation. For example, some accommodations are only reasonable in the classroom setting, some are only reasonable in a testing situation, and some are only reasonable for supportive student services.
Examples of Accommodations
The following examples are meant to help you understand why certain accommodations might be approved and how they would be applied. They do not represent any particular student's experience, do not guarantee a Disability and Access Services counselor's actions or approvals, and are not intended to be medically accurate.
Example 1: Recent, Permanent Loss of Sensory Function
If a student recently lost their sight and requests an accommodation for scribe/dictation for testing, likely, they will be using a person to scribe when implementing this accommodation. This is because the disability is a new development and they are still learning how to function without sight. (Once they become familiar with how to use screen reader technology, they may decide not to use scribe as an accommodation because they are able to remove their own barrier).
The disability would also warrant audio format for testing. Since the student is already using a scribe, it would make sense for the scribe to also read aloud. When the person is serving both functions, they are sometimes referred to as a reader/scribe. The reader/scribe has to have a conversation with the student without disrupting other students. This need warrants a separate testing area, which is often represented by the testing center accommodation. However, in this case, the conversation would still disrupt other students in the general testing center, so the Disability and Access Services counselor may approve testing in the Disability and Access Services Testing Center, where the proctor can coordinate a space for this interaction. The process of reading/rereading the test questions, waiting for the student to understand and process the questions, waiting for them to respond, and then accurately recording their responses can dominate testing time. For this reason, the Disability and Access Services counselor will likely approve extended time for testing.
Example 2: Permanent Hidden Disability
In this example, the student has both a learning disability and an intellectual disability. The specific functional limitations are that they have a slow processing time when producing and communicating thoughts. If they are not able to communicate quickly, they could literally lose their train of thought and have to start again. The Disability and Access Services counselor approves the use of an audio recorder for the classroom so they can replay the lectures as many times as needed. The Disability and Access Services counselor also approves scribe/dictation so they can use dictation to speak their responses before they forget what to say. The slow processing time of the disability and the need to make revisions while using dictation warrants the Disability and Access Services counselor to also approve extended time for testing.
Example 3: Temporary Medical Disability
In this example, this disability is temporary. The student is diagnosed with a benign tumor after the start of a semester. The doctor is certain that a three-month course of weekly chemotherapy will shrink the tumor enough that the student can fully recover. The schedule for chemotherapy conflicts with class time. They hope to continue participating in class for various reasons and have requested accommodations. The Disability and Access Services counselor approves attendance leniency as a temporary accommodation and they supply the instructor with an attendance leniency plan. The student already has one absence not related to the disability. The student and instructor negotiate how they will communicate absences related to the disability and how that would impact them relative to the attendance policy. The student contacts the Disability and Access Services counselor before the next semester of classes to update the need, or lack of need, for accommodations.
Example 4: Mental Health
In this example, the student worked at a convenience store that was recently the target of two robberies in a long string of robberies in the area. They cannot sleep at night as a result of the incidents, and are falling asleep in class and waking up from the daytime nightmares with loud outbursts. They visit a psychologist who has diagnosed them with Acute Stress Disorder (a short-term form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and they request accommodations. The Disability and Services counselor approves the request for preferred seating to reduce distractions from paranoia and breaks during class to prevent drifting to sleep in class.
To appeal the denial of a requested accommodation
Review the following accommodations and grievances policies and procedures: