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AccessAbility Services (Students)

All students with disabilities are entitled to approved accommodations regardless of the format or platform in which their courses appear. The Office of AccessAbility Services (OAS) is committed to ensuring students have access to their approved accommodations; however, flexibility is essential as we work through the new circumstances we are currently facing.

OAS Testing Center Guidance

Testing Support

The OAS is unable to offer in-person proctoring services at the OAS Testing Center for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester due to COVID-19. OAS staff are available to support students in a virtual capacity with accessing their appropriate testing accommodations.  

Submitting Testing Accommodations Request Forms

Professors will not be notifying the OAS of students’ exams. Professors will also not be reserving space for students given that the OAS Testing Center is closed for the remainder of the semester.

It is therefore the responsibility of the student to:

  • Communicate with their professors about whether the student wants to utilize their approved testing accommodations on an upcoming quiz, test, or exam. This process should take place one week in advance of the test date whenever possible.
  • Submit the online Testing Accommodations Request Form to notify the OAS if the student would like to utilize their testing accommodations for the quiz, test, or exam. Submission of this form will prompt the OAS to reach out to the student’s professor to assess if any support is needed from the OAS with implementing the students’ testing accommodations (i.e. extending testing time in Blackboard, breaks, use of a reader, use of a scribe etc.).

Please note: It is important for students to indicate if possible whether they believe there will be a scheduling conflict with using their testing accommodations. Students will be given the opportunity to share these concerns or if they are unaware of the timing and/or duration of the exam when completing the Testing Accommodations Request Form.

What if students believe their professor(s) have already made testing reservations for them before the campus shifted to online classes?

OAS staff will be following up with professors who have already made reservations for their students at the Testing Center, using the Testing Reservation Form. OAS staff will be contacting the student’s professor(s) via email to ascertain if the test is still taking place, if anything about the format or timing has changed, and if the student has reached out to the professor regarding their plan for using their approved testing accommodations.

Accessing Extended Testing Time in Blackboard

Some OAS-registered students receive accommodations for extended testing time on timed quizzes/exams. Extended testing time is calculated based on the amount of time allocated to the class. Professors can extend a student’s testing time in Blackboard. Many professors create a separate extended time version that the students who receive this accommodation can take. The OAS will work with professors to ensure that testing time is extended based on whether the student requests to use this accommodation in their submission of the Testing Accommodations Request Form. 

Accessing Scribe and Reader Accommodations

Some OAS-registered students receive accommodations for a reader or scribe on quizzes/exams. Since exams will be online, most students may not require someone to write for them. There may be some students that need someone to type for them, which scribes may do for online exams. For these scribe cases and for students who do not have access to someone who can read for them, OAS staff will be available to assist students with accessing assistive technologies. We are currently working on implementing these technologies for student use.

Accessing Breaks During Exams

Some OAS-registered students receive an accommodation for breaks, which are typically monitored by OAS staff at the Testing Center. The OAS encourages students and professors to touch base before the exam to coordinate the best way students can take breaks when completing an online exam. The OAS recommends that professors and students agree on an appropriate amount of break time, which professors can then include in the student’s total testing time when they are extending the testing time online, if applicable.

Notetaking Assistance:

Some OAS-registered have accommodations relating to notetaking assistance. The OAS is aware that professors may be using different online planforms when conducting their exam (Blackboard, Webex, etc.). Some of these new platforms may give students the support they need regarding receiving notes on the lectures either through lecture recordings, PowerPoints, etc. If students feel as if they do not have access to the notetaking assistance they need, students are asked to contact the OAS to deliver their concerns.

OAS Support Program Update:

The OAS Support Program will remain open virtually (email, phone, FaceTime) and available to all Eastern students. Students may book appointments to work on both academic and social skills. Here is the link to provide to students; they may select their preferred mode of communication and specifics on what they are requesting the appointment for: OAS Support Program Bookings Page

Consultations

OAS staff are still able to have virtual meetings with OAS students regarding any concerns that they may have with their accommodations. This includes barriers they are experiencing, information on services that may be helpful, difficulties they may have with the online platform due to their disability, etc. If students would like to speak with an OAS staff member, they are asked to email AccessAbility@easternct.edu.

OAS Hours of Operation and Contact Information

Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Email: AccessAbility@easternct.edu
Phone: 860-465-0189
Fax: 860-465-0136