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Amy Miller, MS, CRC, CRPDirector, Division for Academic Success, Office of the Vice President for Health Sciences, VCU
Noncredit Certificate Program
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The Disability Support Services in Higher Education program provides the opportunity for direct support professionals to receive the necessary training to work with students with disabilities. Typically, Disability Support Services Providers have training in education and foundational knowledge of disabilities. What is lacking, however, is the impact of a disability on functional limitations and academic performance. The training in this program is meant to provide an overview of the disability laws, the type of disability supports and accommodations requested, the documentation process, assistive technology, technical standards, and how these are connected to provide academic accommodations to students in the post-secondary setting. It is not meant to replace any policies or practices your institution has, but it may provide a starting point for discussion at your institution. This training will be beneficial to anyone working in or with the Disability Support Services Providers, including teaching faculty.
Completion of five modules, delivered through the Blackboard Learning Management System, are required to receive the certificate. Curriculum materials were created by the VCU Division for Academic Success with AHEAD, the premier professional association committed to full participation of persons with disabilities in postsecondary education.
Online Modules (Courses)
Module 1: Overview of Disability Services and Legal Foundations
This module will increase your knowledge of the legal foundations for nondiscrimination in the college environment. It will provide a greater awareness of the diversity of college students, including students with a broad range of disabilities.
Module 2: Obtaining Services and Accommodations
This module will describe how students register for services with the Disability Services office. It will identify typical forms of accommodations and auxiliary aids. The module will help the learner understand how disability services offices work with students.
Module 3: Determining Reasonable Accommodations
This module will provide an in depth understanding of why and what type of documentation is needed. It explains how communication with the student is vital when determining reasonable accommodations. It will help the learner understand how to work with a student with a new diagnosis.
Module 4: Assistive Technology: How does it work?
This module will provide information an overview of how to determine if assistive technology is needed when making accommodations. How assistive technology is helpful to a student with a disability. It will provide and overview of some of the types and purposes of technology available.
Module 5: Technical Standards and Accommodations
This module will explain what are technical standards. Examples of technical standards and reasonable accommodations will be discussed. This module will also discuss what factors need to be considered when discussing accommodations.
Fee: $75 per module
We encourage participants working toward the Certificate to take Module 1 first; the remaining modules may be taken in any order.
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Please allow 3-5 business days for Blackboard login information from firstname.lastname@example.org. Your Blackboard account will be created with the email used to enroll in this course.
Module fees are non-refundable.
Completed modules will be reviewed on an ongoing basis, and certificates for those who have completed all five modules will be issued quarterly. You may contact the instructor directly if you need your certificate issued sooner.