For Faculty

At Kent State University, we are committed to providing all students with an inclusive and accessible learning environment. Faculty play a significant role in creating that environment and are important partners with SAS in adopting the online and in-person classroom environment for better access. Federal law requires that students with disabilities can participate fully in the same activities as students without disabilities. Faculty are always welcome to contact SAS to discuss specific student requests or overall access for students with disabilities within their classroom.

Faculty should include the approved Disability Accommodation Statement in each course syllabus. SAS also recommends reviewing the accommodation statement during the first class meeting. Doing so may increase awareness of the accommodation process and the student's comfort with providing notification, as well as help to assure faculty receive timely notification for accommodation requests.


Frequently Asked Questions

How will I know if a student needs accommodations?

Faculty are notified of student accommodations through a Course Accessibility Letter (CAL). The student must initiate the request for the CAL, which comes from Student Accessibility Services via email. The CAL will outline all required accommodations for the student. Students can request CALs at any point in the semester, though accommodations are not required to be applied retro-actively.

SAS encourages students to talk to their instructors about how they want to use their accommodations. Instructors are also encouraged to reach out to students when they receive a CAL. CALs outline the minimally required accommodations that can be used by students. As the instructor, you can provide additional flexibility or other reasonable accommodations as you see fit. If questions arise during the conversation with your student, please contact SAS.

As the instructor of the course, your input is highly valued in determining the appropriateness of certain accommodations. If you receive a CAL with an accommodation you feel would alter your ability to assess the course learning outcomes, please contact SAS within seven business days. SAS will review the course and follow up with instructors and students if the accommodation is not appropriate for a course. Instructors should not deny accommodations prior to speaking to SAS.

How can I make my course more accessible?

Faculty members are encouraged to engage in accessible, inclusive practices and to regularly review course design to identify and remove barriers for students with disabilities. The Center for Teaching and Learning and the Digital Accessibility Team within the Division of Information Technology regularly offer workshops and training about strategies for creating proactive, inclusive classroom environments.

Testing accommodations. What do I need to know?

Students with exam accommodations can test in the SAS office or make arrangements with their instructor to utilize exam accommodations in an alternate space.

SAS will proctor exams for students with accommodations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Students are expected to take their exams at the same day and time as the entire class whenever possible. Exams for classes scheduled before 9 a.m. or after 5 p.m. should be scheduled as close to the class time as possible within the SAS testing hours. Due to scheduling constraints, students will be permitted to schedule their exams on the scheduled day as well as up to two days after the exam is administered in class.

Instructors who choose to proctor their own exams should ensure that students receive all available accommodations.

Instructors can submit exams using the SAS Exam Instruction Form. Be sure to indicate any specific information about your exam as well as how you would like to receive the completed exams. Exams can be scanned and returned to your Kent State email address, or you may pick up your exam in person at the SAS office.

Kent campus faculty, contact SAS Testing and Office Coordinator Patti Marcum at pmarcum@kent.edu. Regional campus faculty, contact your regional SAS Coordinator.

What is an attendance modification?

The attendance modification accommodation is intended to provide flexibility for students who experience episodic exacerbations in their disability that may occasionally prohibit them from attending class. This accommodation is listed on the student’s Course Accessibility Letter, and students are encouraged to discuss this accommodation with their instructors as early in the semester as possible.

It is the student’s responsibility to alert their instructor to a disability-related absence, and they must communicate this with their instructor no more than 24 hours after the missed class session. Non-disability related absences should be considered based on the instructor’s syllabus policy.  When a student with this accommodation misses class due to their disability, you should provide them with a reasonable makeup opportunity and not penalize them for the absence.

Students with this accommodation are responsible for all course learning outcomes. If you believe that using this accommodation would inhibit your ability to evaluate those learning outcomes (such as interactive, discussion-based courses or lab courses), you must contact SAS within seven business days of receiving the CAL. SAS will review the course and make a determination as to the reasonability of the accommodation, and the office will follow up with both the student and the instructor to communicate the results of the review.

Kent campus faculty, contact SAS at sas@kent.edu or by calling 330-672-3391. Regional campus faculty, contact your regional SAS Coordinator.

What is a deadline modification?

The deadline modification accommodation is intended to provide flexibility for students whose disability may interfere with their ability to meet deadlines or complete lengthy projects. This accommodation is listed on the student’s Course Accessibility Letter, and students are encouraged to discuss this accommodation with their instructors as early in the semester as possible.

It is the student’s responsibility to request an extension from their instructor prior to the due date, and students should denote that the request is disability related. Non-disability related requests should be considered based on the instructor’s syllabus policy.  SAS typically recommends an extension of one to three days, though students and instructors should discuss the specific length of the extension. This accommodation applies to lengthy assignments, such as papers over four pages or comprehensive projects. It does not apply to discussion posts, short written or homework assignments, or group work.   

Students with this accommodation are responsible for all course learning outcomes. If you believe that using this accommodation would inhibit your ability to evaluate those learning outcomes (such as a class where assignments build gradually to a final project), you must contact SAS within seven business days of receiving the CAL. SAS will review the course and make a determination as to the reasonability of the accommodation, and the office will follow up with both the student and the instructor to communicate the results of the review.

Kent campus faculty, contact SAS at sas@kent.edu or by calling 330-672-3391. Regional campus faculty, contact your regional SAS Coordinator.

There's going to be an ASL interpreter in my class. How will that work?

SAS will coordinate ASL interpreters for your classroom if needed by a D/deaf student. The role of ASL interpreters is to provide a translation of spoken language into signed language. It is helpful for instructors to make sure there is ample space in the front of the classroom for the interpreters and to add the interpreters to their Blackboard or Canvas course so they can prepare for class. For more information on appropriate etiquette when working with Deaf students who use ASL interpreters, check out this Tip Sheet from the National Deaf Center.

Contact SAS Interpreter Coordinator Jen Crowley at jcrowle2@kent.edu.  

How do I provide video captioning? What's Real-Time Transcribing?

Students that need video captioning require professionally captioned videos. SAS can provide captions for videos that are not already captioned. If you see this accommodation on a CAL and use videos or audio material in your class, please contact SAS as soon as possible.

Making accessible materials available to students who have an accommodation at the same time as students who do not is critical to their success in the class and essential to ensuring equal access required by federal law and university policy. Captioning can take some time to complete, so we would like to work ahead as much as possible.  Storing videos in Kaltura can make the captioning process much faster for students. You can even use Kaltura Reach to provide free, machine-generated captions to any video you record.

SAS will coordinate real-time transcribers for your classroom if needed by a D/deaf or hard of hearing student. The role of transcribers is to provide an accurate, real-time transcript of spoken language during the class. The student with this accommodation will use a laptop or an iPad to review the transcript, and they will receive an edited copy after class. It is helpful for instructors to add the interpreters to their Blackboard or Canvas course so they can prepare for class.

Contact SAS Captioning Coordinator Eileen Mlachak at emlachak@kent.edu or schedule an appointment with Eileen.

What are alternative formats?

Students with this accommodation require access to written documents in an electronic format. SAS will provide electronic copies of textbooks that are listed with the University Bookstore after verifying that the student has purchased the book. Converting documents can take several weeks, so we recommend contacting SAS as soon as you receive the student’s CAL. If you use articles, books, or other documents that are provided directly to students, please contact SAS to arrange for these materials to be made available in an accessible format.

Kent campus faculty, contact Zachary Strickler at zstrick1@kent.edu. Regional campus faculty, contact your regional SAS Coordinator.

How do I provide note-taking assistance?

Students with this accommodation require assistance with taking notes in class. This accommodation can be implemented in one of two ways.

Peer Note-taker When students confirm that they do need note-taking assistance in a course, SAS will email you with a sample recruitment announcement for you to share with your class. SAS will also email your class roster to solicit a peer note-taker. Volunteers can sign up following the instructions on the SAS website. Peer note-takers receive $25 per credit hour in Flash Cash for providing copies of their notes to a student.

Note-taking Express: Students also have the option to use a professional note-taking service in lieu of a peer note-taker. Students who choose this option are responsible for providing a quality audio recording of the class and should contact SAS to receive login credentials.

Kent campus faculty, contact Zachary Strickler at zstrick1@kent.edu. Regional campus faculty, contact your regional SAS Coordinator.

What if a student wants to record my lecture?

Students with this accommodation can record class lectures using a personal device. These recordings are to be used only for the student’s educational purposes and should not be shared with others.