- Letter of Accommodation (LOA)
- Classroom Accommodations
A Letter of Accommodation (LoA) is a formal document that your PMC Coordinator issues to each instructor by email on your behalf. It informs the instructor of the text/exam and/or classroom accommodations that are recommended for you for each course. Only one Letter of Accommodation is required to cover accommodations for all three types of exams (in-class tests, formally scheduled exams, CUTV midterm exams) in any given course.
Classroom accommodations are there to enable students with disabilities to access instructional material on an equitable basis with their non-disabled peers. Provision of taped lectures, sign language interpretation, note-takers, and FM systems are common classroom accommodations offered by the Paul Menton Centre for students who require them. If you have difficulty accessing instructional material in the traditional format due to your disability, you should discuss your needs with your PMC coordinator.
Some students find that audiotaping lectures allows them to review the material presented in class. While it requires organizing your study time, it has two benefits:
- allowing you to fill in your notes, thereby concentrating on listening to the Instructor during the lecture; and
- encouraging you to review the course information a second time, which never hurts! A limited number of tape recorders are available for you to borrow in order to determine if this strategy is one you can use efficiently and effectively.
If you are registering for courses at Carleton University and require sign language interpretation for access to course materials, you should register as soon as possible with the Paul Menton Centre.
A minimum of 4 weeks prior to classes is usually required to put an effective interpreter team together. If you do not come in 4 weeks before classes start, there may be a delay in receiving services for your first classes. Interpreters like to meet with your instructors before the beginning of your course(s) in order to prepare sufficiently and provide the best service possible for you. Contact Bruce Hamm for more information.
The responsibility for the provision of text/exam accommodations to students with disabilities at Carleton is shared by instructors, Scheduling & Examination Services (SES), and the CUTV Office.
The Notetaking Service offered by the Paul Menton Centre is a volunteer-based program. The success of this program depends on these volunteer notetakers who are willing to share their notes with fellow students who cannot take their own notes for a variety of disability-related reasons.
Note: The Volunteer Notetaking Program is a service and is not mandated in the way(s) that accommodations are legislated.
Who is Eligible?
Students with documented disabilities who are registered with the Paul Menton Centre are eligible for this service. However, request for notetaking accommodation must be directly related to the specific functional limitations of the student’s disability. Reasons for students requiring notetakers may vary from diminished visual acuity to auditory processing deficit to fine motor difficulties.
Arranging for Note-taking Services
- After attending your classes to see if you require notetaking service, discuss your need with your PMC coordinator who will help you determine the best method of support and will evaluate the appropriateness of such request based on the specific functional limitations of your disability.
- Once approved check myPMC on Carleton Central regularly. If you have been assigned a volunteer notetaker you will receive an email from the Notetaking Team with instructions on how to download notes from myPMC. If there is not yet a volunteer for your class you will receive an email with suggestions for finding a notetaker.
- All emails will be sent to student’s CONNECT email account. It is imperative that students check their CONNECT email regularly for updates regarding notetaking services. It is also imperative that students download notes and check myPMC regularly so that the notetaking team can be notified of any issues in a timely manner. Failure to notify the Notetaking Team of issues may result in delayed or inadequate notes.
- Request notetaking accommodation with your PMC Coordinator at beginning of every term. Late requests are much more difficult to fill and may result in incomplete notes.
- Notify Professors of the need for a volunteer notetaker and ask them to make the in-class announcement that has been emailed to them by the Notetaking Team..
- Attend classes regularly. Receiving notes is NOT a substitute for attending class. All students receiving notes must attend class regularly and attempt to take their own notes, in the chance that a volunteer is not located.
- Notify the Notetaking Coordinator immediately if you no longer require this service for a particular course or if you have found a volunteer that will not be posted notes via myPMC.
- Notify the Notetaking Team if notes are missing/unsatisfactory or if you are having difficulty finding a note taker.
Many Instructors now provide their notes or lecture slides on WebCT for students in their class to download. Printing those notes and reviewing them before each class allows you to take notes more efficiently during class. A majority of students report to us that when this strategy is available, they do not need notetaking services.
Students registered with the Paul Menton Centre may request to have their required texts and readings transcribed into various alternate formats such as PDF, mp3, Braille or large print. Once a request for alternate format has been been approved by a student’s coordinator, the information is passed onto Transcription Services at the Library, which may require placing an order with the W. Ross MacDonald School for the Blind. W. Ross Macdonald is the provincial agency that provides texts and other course-related print material in the alternate format of a student’s choice.
PDF can be used with reading software such as Kurzweil to aid a student with a learning disability; an mp3 of the reading material helps when used in conjunction with reading the text. If a text is not readily available in alternate format, arrangements can be made to have it transcribed into electronic format, Braille or large print. Students must show proof of purchase of the required reading material (such as coursepacks or textbooks) which may have to be sent off to W. Ross MacDonald School.
As the process to convert texts take several weeks, students are asked to provide course outlines with complete bibliographic information including the number of pages for the required readings plus the dates when the material is needed. It is essential to obtain course outlines as early as possible and to get your requests in early.