Faculty Awareness and Training in the Post-Secondary Community: An Annotated Bibliography

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Accommodating Students with Disabilities: A Faculty Handbook


This 16-page guide was prepared in September, 2000 by the Atlantic Centre Of Support for Students with Disabilities. It begins with a description of the centre's mandate, which is to help post-secondary schools in Nova Scotia provide students with disabilities with accessible education. The introductory section also stresses the importance of effective faculty support, given that "professors are the people who have the most direct contact with the students." Finally, a list of contact information for centre staff is included.

The About Us section expands further on accessibility at St. Mary's University, from the 1968 opening of an accessible residence to the 1985 opening of the centre. It also provides an overview of services offered at the school.

Two to three pages of information are provided for each of the disabilities discussed in the guide, including hearing impairments, vision impairments, mobility impairments, and learning disabilities. Each section introduces the scope of the disability and discusses situations in the classroom that affect disabled students (i.e., different rooms affecting hearing impairments).

A section on support services gives fairly detailed descriptions of the various support services available to students, and discusses other ways faculty can offer support to students with disabilities, such as through exam accommodations.

The guidebook then describes some recommended instructional strategies, and methods of accommodation in class, on assignments, and outside of the classroom environment. The responsibility of students to inform faculty of their needs, and the responsibility of faculty to be willing to offer assistance where possible, are stressed.

Brief sections on exam accommodations and note-taking services offered by the centre follow, emphasizing the need for students to keep in touch with the centre and for faculty to be aware of these accommodation methods.

This guidebook offers good information on accommodation strategies, in clear language. It also provides valuable overviews on much of the technology available to help accommodate students with disabilities in the classroom and on tests and assignments.

Dr. David Leitch, Director
Atlantic Centre of Research, Access and Support for Students with Disabilities
3rd Floor, Student Union Building
Saint Mary's University
Halifax, Nova Scotia
B3H 3C3
Phone: 902-420-5452
Fax: 902-496-8122
TTY: 902-425-1257
Web site: