COVID-19

Face Covering/Mask Exemption Status Information

Students who are not able to wear a face covering or mask due to the impact of a disability or medical condition may qualify for exemption status.  To apply, go to the UCA Disability Resource Center website, click on the Face Covering/Mask Exemption Registration link, complete the online application and upload documentation.  DRC front desk staff will contact you and schedule an appointment with a DRC Team Member as soon as possible.   

In order for the Disability Resource Center to determine eligibility for the face covering/mask exemption, please upload documentation from your qualified professional (health care professional or mental health professional) that has the following information:

  • Student’s name
  • Diagnosis
  • How wearing a face covering or mask will exacerbate the impact of your disability or medical condition
  • Recommendation to be exempt from wearing face coverings or masks

Students seeking exemption status who are currently registered with and approved for accommodations through the DRC can call to schedule an additional accommodation appointment with their assigned primary advisor.  

If the exemption is approved, a letter will be sent to the student and their instructors.  

Students who are approved for the face covering/mask exemption will receive a card issued from the BearCard office with their name and the exemption status printed on the card.   Students may be required to show their card to gain access to events and buildings within the UCA community.  The card is only valid on UCA’s campus.  Students will also be  required to undergo COVID-19 testing on a weekly basis. UCA will cover the costs of all testing, and the testing will be conducted in consultation with the Student Health Clinic.

Students with questions or concerns can contact the Disability Resource Center at 501- 450-3613.

UCA employees seeking face covering/mask exemption status may contact Human Resources at 450-3181.

Providing Accommodations and Access

Below are examples of how commonly approved accommodations may apply to current UCA instructional method settings for the Fall 2020 semester.  Please note this is not an exhaustive list.  Accommodation letters are emailed to faculty.  Faculty should review the accommodations listed in the students’ accommodation letter and discuss what accommodations may still be needed and how they can be provided. It is key for both the student and the faculty member to communicate regarding accommodations and barriers they may experience. As always, DRC staff are available to consult with students and faculty. Please email drc@uca.edu or call (501) 450-3613 to speak with a DRC staff member.

Classroom Accommodations

Student may be late to class due to a mobility impairment: Due to CDC guidelines, Courtesy Cart Services drivers can only pickup and drop off one student at a time.  Students receiving Courtesy Cart Services may arrive later than normal within the first two weeks of class.

Access to Food and Drink: Students are to consume food and drink for medical use before coming into the classroom.

Attendance Accommodation: Attendance policies for current classroom structures may change how this accommodation functions.  However, if content is not recorded and available for viewing later or if there is an interactive component to the class instructors will need to work with students to discuss options for making up work or gaining access to material. If you have questions about this accommodation, please contact Ms. Doris Pierce, Director for the Disability Resource Center at dpierce@uca.edu.

Note-Taking (including peer notes, copy of notes, access to slides, using laptop for taking notes and audio recording lectures): This accommodation may not apply to online courses unless there is a lecture component.  Note taking for live streaming lecture content may require note taking accommodations.  When assigning note takers for hybrid courses, consider hiring a note taker that is in the same group that the DRC student attends class.  If you have any questions about the note taking accommodation, please contact Ms. Latosha Mitchell, DRC Note-Taking Coordinator at lmitchell16@uca.edu.

Recording Lectures:  As of 08/12/2020, all faculty have been asked to record lectures in all versions of their classes.  For more information on how faculty can record their lectures in BlackBoard Collaborate, Google Meet and Zoom, go to the Web Conferencing Tools tab under the Resources section of the CTE website at http://www.uca.edu/cte .

Please allow student one on one time for public speaking:  For effective social distancing, arrange meetings with student over web conferencing such as Zoom, BlackBoard Collaborate or Google Meet.

Accessible Course Documents: Accessible course documents include textbooks, articles, scanned copies of books and any other assigned reading material. An electronic book or handout provided in its original state may not be accessible.  Many electronic textbooks and documents are unfortunately not very keyboard friendly or accessible and may be in a proprietary format that cannot be accessed by blind students or students with specific types of motor impairment.  If/When copying textbook material, only copy one page of a book at a time. Double pages are typically very difficult to make accessible for students.  For more information on accessible course documents please follow this link. If you have any questions about online course materials, please reach out to the Center for Teaching Excellence or the Disability Resource Center at drc@uca.edu

Live Captioning:  Students approved for the transcription services and students who are hard of hearing who utilize lip reading as their main mode of receiving lecture information in the F2F classroom may need live captioning for synchronous lectures provided through web conferencing tools. For questions regarding deaf and hard of hearing services, please contact Ms. Robyn Smith, Associate Director at rsmith@uca.edu.

Captioning Videos: If you intend to show videos during class, including online, check to make sure the video has closed captions. Videos that are shown in online courses should have captioning, not just for the hearing impaired, but for everyone. When creating recorded lecture videos, faculty members should upload those files to either Kaltura or YouTube. This will allow students to stream the video and not have to download the entire file, which helps students with slow internet connections. Even though these video platforms create captions automatically, it is not a perfect solution. Captions created automatically are intended to be a base for creating accurate captions. Please use the following instructions when editing captions in Kaltura. Use this resource for captioning your YouTube videos.  

Testing Accommodations

Extra Time Testing.  University Testing will not be proctoring exams for DRC registered students in online classes that receive only Extra Time testing accommodations. If a student has extended test time (time and a half – 1.50x or double time 2.00x), exams and quizzes must be adjusted accordingly. Blackboard allows instructors to extend exam/quiz time for a particular student. Please follow this link for instructions.  Unless this applies for all students in your course, the time period window in which faculty allow students to take their tests need not be extended.

Distraction Reduced Environment: Students with this accommodation who are testing in Blackboard Collaborate Ultra will need to turn off all pop-up notifications.  The information below can assist with helping all students newly acclimating to testing for online classes create a less distracting environment in the comfort of their living space:

  1. Designate a testing space.
  2. Put up a “Do Not Disturb” sign.
  3. Set up space 15 minutes before start time to allow for technical issues to be resolved before test time.
  4. Know the rules of the test.
  5. Use a clock near your computer so you can track how much time you have.
  6. Utilize a lockdown browser if you are prone to checking other sites while online.
  7. Most importantly, contact your instructor if you have issues with or do not understand the information above

Reader Accommodation:  Students approved for the Reader accommodation can choose one of the following options below:

Reader Accommodation Option #1:
University Testing Center:

  • Submit an exam request 3 business days in advance (business days are Monday-Friday) through MyDRC.
  • Inform your instructor that you will be using your testing accommodations. They will need to extend the time limit of the test based on your accommodation and disable Respondus Lockdown Browser to enable testing staff to read your test.
  • Once a test has been scheduled, University Testing Center staff will set up a Zoom meeting with a password-protected waiting room.
  • On the day of the test, you will be asked to initiate screen share access for University Testing Center staff to provide your reader accommodation.

Reader Accommodation Option #2:
Read & Write Software
:

  • Inform your instructor that you will be using your testing accommodations. They will need to extend the time limit of the test based on your accommodation and disable Respondus Lockdown Browser so you can utilize the Read & Write software.
  •  Download the free Google Extension version of Read & Write from the DRC website at https://uca.edu/disability/readwrite-for-chrome to use the Screenshot Reader to read your test.
  • Click the icon (dotted line box with an arrow in the bottom right-hand corner pointing to the left) and drag your mouse to draw a rectangle around the information you need read and it will read it to you.
  • Note: You do not need to submit an exam request on MyDRC if you do not want Testing staff to provide your reader accommodation.

Scribe Accommodation:  Students approved for the scribe accommodation can utilize one of the following options below:

Scribe Accommodation Option #1:
University Testing Center:

  • Submit an exam request 3 business days in advance (business days are Monday-Friday) through MyDRC.
  • Inform your instructor that you will be using your testing accommodations. They will need to extend the time limit of the test based on your accommodation and disable Respondus Lockdown Browser to enable testing staff to scribe for your test.
  • Once a test has been scheduled, University Testing Center staff will set up a Zoom meeting with a password-protected waiting room.
  • On the day of the test, you will be asked to initiate screen share access for University Testing Center staff to provide your scribe accommodation.

Scribe Accommodation Option #2:
Read & Write Software
:

  • Note: You do not need to submit an exam request on MyDRC if you do not want Testing staff to provide your scribe accommodation.
  • Inform your instructor that you will be using your testing accommodations. They will need to extend the time limit of the test based on your accommodation and disable Respondus Lockdown Browser so you can utilize the Read & Write software to dictate your responses.
  • Download the free Google Extension version of Read & Write from the DRC website at https://uca.edu/disability/readwrite-for-chrome. The Talk & Type feature will turn your spoken word into text as you speak into the microphone.
  • Click the icon (headphone set with microphone attached) and start talking directly into your computer microphone. Don’t forget to use correct punctuation.
  • Copy and paste your answers into your test.
  • If you need a computer headset with microphone, please contact Ms. Robyn Smith, DRC Associate Director at rsmith@uca.edu as soon as possible and one will be mailed to you.

Online Access

As instructors develop their courses online, it is important to remember that UCA is still obligated to ensure that classes are accessible to students with disabilities. Instructors who need assistance or who have questions about moving courses online can contact the CTE and should utilize resources created by the University. Instructors are encouraged to review the Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE) resources and DRC resources when creating accessible online content.

Additional Resources Available for Faculty and Staff: