Monmouth College has made a number of physical changes in recent years to make campus more accessible; however, there are many older buildings on campus that may not be accessible to students with certain physical impairments. The College has the obligation to make classes and programs accessible and will make reasonable accommodations to do so. Examples of appropriate physical accommodations include changing the location of the room in which the class is held, removing fixed seating to allow wheelchair access, asking a professor whose office is not accessible to meet with the student in another setting, and so forth.
Students have the obligation to notify Disability Services as promptly as possible of any physical barrier to their participation in a class or program to arrange for modifications. If necessary, Disability Services will work with the faculty member, the student, Physical Plant, the Registrar, the academic department, and any other parties necessary to make reasonable and appropriate accommodations regarding physical spaces.
Classes taught in laboratory settings (science, language labs, arts, film and video, etc.) usually need some modification of the work station for students with mobility or visual impairments. Considerations include under-the-counter knee clearance for students who use wheelchairs, appropriate work space and counter top height, sufficient horizontal working range, and adequate aisle widths. Working directly with the student is usually the best way to provide modifications to work stations.
Extra Travel Time Between Classes
If breaks between classes are short, a student with a mobility impairment may be a few minutes late. Often the student must wait for an elevator, take circuitous (but accessible) routes, wait for assistance in opening doors, and maneuver along crowded paths and corridors. If the student is frequently late, it is appropriate for the student to discuss the situation with professors and possibly Disability Services to seek solutions. Most students will be aware of time restrictions and will schedule their classes accordingly when possible.
Some students may use service animals. The highly trained and disciplined service animal will not disturb the class and the greatest disruption may be an occasional yawn or stretch. As tempting as it may be to pet or speak to the service animal, the animal, while in harness, is responsible for helping and guiding its owner and should not be distracted from that duty. For more information about Service Animals, see the College’s Service and Assistance Animal Policy.
Accessible Field Trips
If classes involve field trips to off-campus locations, provisions will be made for students with disabilities to the greatest extent possible. Transportation to and accessibility of destination must be investigated so the student with a disability can participate. Faculty members should consult with the student with the disability if there are any questions concerning the accessibility requirements. Disability Services can be contacted to provide resources to help make the trip accessible.