Accommodations for

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					                                      Accommodations for
                               Students with Special Physical Needs
                                              September 2001
                                         Policy and Procedures

       The HCT Task Force document (1998) entitled “Policy and Procedural Guidelines for HCT
       Students with Special Needs” recommended that: HCT provide reasonable accommodation for
       physically and medically disabled students who meet HCT entrance requirements and assist them
       in their efforts to meet graduation requirements without compromising HCT’s academic standards.
       Policy Council approved the paper in principle, without resource commitments, and Central
       Student Services was asked to provide support and guidance to college student services within the
       HCT, within the spirit of the 1998 Policy and Procedures Guidelines

       One outcome of that request was the establishment of a Special Needs subcommittee of student
       and academic services to develop an operational plan with policy and procedural guidelines
       reflecting the spirit of UAE Federal Law (No 13, 1981 revised 1991).

       The following policy and procedural guidelines are derived form the recommendations of the task
       force report and currently limited to students with special physical needs. 1

1.     POLICY
       1.1. In accordance with the laws of the UAE, HCT will provide reasonable accommodation for
            students with special physical needs.
       1.2. HCT will ensure confidentiality of special needs cases.
       1.3. Students cannot be exempted from any part of an assessment as a result of physical disability.
            They can however be accommodated in ways that allows them to demonstrate their ability in
            the required skills area.
       1.4. Entry to a program is dependent on the student being physically able, with appropriate
            assistance, to achieve the objectives of that program.
       1.5. It is recommended that the scope of the policy be broadened in the future to address
            disabilities of those students who are disadvantaged by reason of verifiable and persistent
            learning, cognitive, sensory, psychological, neurological or temporary impairment that may
            affect their academic progress. (Modified from current definitions of the World Health
            Organization as quoted in the Athabasca University Policy Manual for Students with

       2.1. Each college will develop its own procedures for identifying and accommodating students
            with special needs.
       2.2. As soon as a special need has been identified the case will be brought to the attention of the
            Student Services Supervisor or his/her designate.
       2.3. When a special need has been identified after a student is registered in class, he or she may be
            asked to have a medical examination and provide a medical evaluation to keep on file.
       2.4. Accommodations will be identified and made available as determined by the student
            counselor in consultation with the student’s physician, faculty members and the appropriate
            professional designated at each college by the Director to deal with this policy.
       2.5. The accommodation will be coordinated by the College Counselor and be implemented by
            the relevant faculty in consultation with the Academic and/or Student Services Supervisor as
       2.6. The special accommodations remain in force for the entire duration of the student’s study or
            until the disability has disappeared.
       2.7. The College Student Services Supervisor ensures implementation of approved
            accommodations and informs Central Student and Academic Services (CSAS) of special
            needs cases and their accommodation for tracking purposes.
       2.8. System Wide assessments such as IELTS and PET are governed by policy and procedure for
            students with special needs as determined by the organizations that develop and administer

     See Definitions
          those tests. The local administrator of ILETS and PET assessments, must apply a minimum
          of six months in advance of the test date for permission for those special cases where
          academic accommodations required.
     2.9. The Manager of CSAS will:
               Disseminate the policy and procedures system-wide,
               Report the special needs accommodations on an annual basis to the HCT community
               Review and refine the policies and procedures above in consultation with the colleges
                  as needed
               Evaluate the Special Needs Policy annually and report the results to the HCT
                  community and
               Review applications from students with Special needs, who want their request for
                  accommodation reconsidered.


     Suggested Accommodations for auditory, visual, motor skills and speech impairments may include
     but are not limited to the following:
     Hearing, If a student can lip-read then the listening script can be read aloud to them at normal
     speed. A headphone can be used for the listening test. A speaking test can be modified to allow
     time for the student to understand and answer.
      Vision, If useful, enlarged versions of text can be given. If the student reads Braille, external
     examinations can in some cases be given in Braille. Extra time - usually 50% - can be given for
     reading assessment material.
     Motor Skills, Extra time - usually 50% - can be given for writing or keyboard assessments, for
     example, in case where students have fewer digits on one or both hands. The students can
     keyboard answers, where there are difficulties with handwriting.
     Speech, A students with stammering or other speech impairment can be paired with a partner
     who will interact slowly and empathetically.

     Reasonable academic accommodation within the context of this document means accommodations
     within the available human, financial and physical limitations of the individual college.

     Special physical need in the context of this document is used interchangeably with disability and
     handicap, but does not include mental or psychological impairment.

     The World Health Organization (WHO) defined and distinguished between the words “Disability”
     and “Handicap” in 1980.

     In this distinction, disability refers to reduced role functioning caused by physical or mental
     impairments arising from anatomical loss or disease.

     Handicap refers to problems that result from society’s adverse judgments or behaviors toward
     those whose functional limitations interfere with the role functioning considered normative by

     In 1986 The National Council on the handicapped (USA) has spelled out what accommodation
     should include:

     “The nondiscrimination requirement should expressly include a duty to make reasonable
     accommodations, which should be defined as providing or modifying devices services or facilities,
     or changing practices or procedures in order to allow a particular person to participate in a
     particular program, activity or job.

     The duty not to discriminate should also include an obligation to remove architectural,
     transportation, and communication barriers, including meeting accessibility requirements.

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