learning disabilities

CRLT Players performing (dis)Abilities in the Classroom

What obstacles to student learning might you inadvertently be introducing into your classroom? How can you plan courses and lesson plans in ways that effectively anticipate a range of student abilities? What resources and practices can help you work with students who disclose learning disabilities? What are good strategies for fostering respect and understanding about learning disabilities within your classrooms?

Participants discussed all of these questions in a recent workshop with the CRLT Players on "(dis)Abilities in the Classroom." Using theater to prompt reflection and discussion, the session explored various challenges faced by U-M students with learning disabilities and provided concrete strategies for instructors to support students in navigating those challenges. As emphasized by this CRLT Occasional Paper, students with disabilities are attending and succeeding at U-M in increasing numbers. As our classroom communities become more diverse in this way, it's critical for U-M teachers to anticipate and respond productively to a range of student abilities in their classrooms.

CRLT Players performing (dis)Abilities in the Classroom

During the workshop, participants brainstormed a wide range of teaching strategies that echo the best practices for inclusive teaching recommended by the CRLT Occasional Paper as well as U-M's Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) office. As their Faculty Handbook--a great resource for all U-M teachers--explains, many strategies for anticipating or accommodating students with learning disabilities are simply good pedagogy.

Specific teaching practices suggested at the workshop include: Read more »

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See also: Information from the Office of the General Counsel; Faculty Handbook (SSD)

 

To Be Inclusive: Include a Statement in the Syllabus

  • Include in the course syllabus a statement asking students with disabilities to meet to arrange accommodations.  (Using a standard statement on the syllabus will both protect student privacy and affirm your policy.) 

    Sample Statement endorsed by SACUA

    If you think you need an accommodation for a disability, please let me know at your earliest convenience. Some aspects of this course, the assignments, the in-class activities, and the way the course is usually taught may be modified to facilitate your participation and progress. As soon as you make me aware of your needs, we can work with the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) to help us determine appropriate academic accommodations. SSD (734-763-3000;
    ssd.umich.edu/) typically recommends accommodations through a Verified Individualized Services and Accommodations (VISA) form. Any information you provide is private and confidential and will be treated as such.

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