Student Accessibility Services

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Welcome!  We are Student Accessibility Services.

Our Vision

Aligned with Clemson University’s commitment to diversity, we envision a welcoming campus that is readily usable and accessible by students with varied characteristics, strengths, and challenges. To that end, we strive to provide access that is proactive, sustainable, equitable, and inclusive to the widest population possible.

Our Mission

We work with students, faculty and staff to ensure that all students at Clemson have equivalent access to campus curricula, facilities, services, and resources through universal design, accommodations, and creative solutions.

Access Commitment

Clemson University is committed to providing educational opportunities for all students and assisting them in making their college experience fully accessible and positive. In compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended in 2008, Clemson recognizes a student with a disability as anyone who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity. SAS coordinates the provision of reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities and students experiencing barriers due to inaccessibility. All reasonable accommodations are individualized, flexible and confidential based on the nature of the disability

COVID 19 and Online Transition Information

The staff of Student Accessibility Services hopes that everyone is staying safe and well during the COVID-19 situation. We recognize that the transition to an online format creates questions and uncertainties, and we are here to help work through those questions and brainstorm creative solutions to ensure students with disabilities continue to have equal access. We are all working together to try to navigate the necessary changes to course formats and the intersection of course design, accommodations, and accessibility.
We are fielding many questions from faculty, administrators, students, and parents, and we look forward to collaborations as we address unprecedented situations. We continue to be available at 864-656-6848 during business hours, and reachable via email at studentaccess@lists.clemson.edu.

Here are some common questions, with follow-up information:

  • What if a student is unable to have equal access to instruction in the online environment due to a disability?

    Students should contact SAS if they have disability-related difficulties accessing the online environment as soon as difficulties arise. SAS will work with professors and Clemson Online to ensure that accessibility needs are met. If access cannot be made available, possible reasonable modification of policies may be explored.

    In many instances an online format is more flexible and more easily inclusive for different disability-related needs. While we recognize that an online format may not a student’s first preference for instruction, this format has been mandated by the Governor of SC, and we are working diligently to comply with that mandate while also meeting students’ needs. Any student who is experiencing disability-related barriers to access with the online format should contact us as soon as possible, and we will respond as quickly as possible.

  • What if a student is unable to take a test in an online format due to a disability?

    Individual disability-related situations will be considered on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the nature of the disability and the design and format of the test. Assistive technologies may be used to create equal access. SAS staff are prepared to explore creative solutions to ensure that access is available to students with varying needs. If it is decided that online testing is not possible for a particular situation, reasonable modifications to policies might be considered.

  • What if a student uses assistive technology that is not compatible with remote proctoring/test integrity software being used by the professor?

    Professors have a variety of remote proctoring software and software to help ensure test integrity available to them. Some of these are incompatible with some assistive technologies used by students for disability-related reasons.

    We have seen some difficulty with the use of Respondus Lockdown Browser, and offer the following from their website:http://support.respondus.com/support/index.php?/Knowledgebase/Article/View/187/0/is-lockdown-browser-accessible-to-those-with-disabilities

    Is LockDown Browser accessible to those with disabilities? Posted by Respondus Support

    The Mac version of LockDown Browser works with VoiceOver (the standard screen reader that comes with the Mac OS). LockDown Browser's functions and security remain the same when VoiceOver is used. Be sure you are using LockDown Browser version 2.0.3.03 or newer.

    As of LockDown Browser 2.0.1.07 for Windows, accessibility is enabled for all users. Improvements to accessibility were added to version 2.0.3.00 for Windows. Please have all students on Windows platforms upgrade to version 2.0.3.03 and newer. The Windows version of LockDown Browser allows a student to use some screen reader accessibility programs, such as NVDA, JAWS, MS-Windows Narrator, ReadSpeaker webReader, and Windows-Eyes. In our experience, NVDA works the best. It is free and available to download here:https://www.nvaccess.org/

    • Zoom Text is compatible in regards to increasing the text size, but the reader is not currently compatible.
    • Read&Write Gold, Kurzweil 3000 are not compatible with LockDown Browser. Most "literacy" programs like these have a number incompatibilities and potential exploits that cannot be addressed in LockDown Browser. These programs are standalone Windows programs which cannot be brought on top of an active LockDown Browser exam. Also, for use with a browser, these programs require a custom browser plug-in that is not compatible with LockDown Browser.
    • For "speech to text" with Dragon Naturally Speaking, users have reported adjusting the settings to "not use the dictation box" in Dragon Naturally Speaking, will allow it to work with LockDown Browser.

    To upgrade LockDown Browser, either download and install the full installation package, or start LockDown Browser, select the “i” button from the toolbar (Windows) or "about" button (Mac) and then click “Check for Newer Version”. The version will be displayed and you will be able to download a newer version if one is available.Keep in mind that the security level of LockDown Browser is lowered when screen readers are used.

    Any SAS student who is having difficulty with the compatibility of their assistive technology and changes to testing protocols should contact the SAS office for assistance. We may refer students to CCIT for assistance with some software provided through their office. We will work with students to find the right combination of tools that will provide equal access to the testing situation.

  • How does a Medical Absences Agreement accommodation transfer to online learning?

    Individual medical-related situations will be considered on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the nature of the disability and the nature of the online learning (eg. Synchronous vs. Asynchronous, level of participation, timelines and deadlines, options for flexibility, etc.). SAS staff will consult with the student regarding current levels of functioning and medical-related needs, and will consult with all professors regarding the design of their modified online class to determine how the agreement will transfer to online learning and where flexibility can be provided. A modified Agreement plan may be reviewed and signed by all parties. Students should begin by communicating with their professors regarding the plan they had in place and how it may transfer to an online environment. SAS is happy to assist with the discussion if questions arise.

  • How does a student return assistive technology equipment to the office, if the office is not currently staffed?

    Students who have assistive technology hardware equipment out on loan from SAS can either keep the equipment until the office is staffed again, or can send the equipment to our physical address:

    Student Accessibility Services
    Academic Success Center, Suite 239
    836 McMillan Road
    Clemson, SC 29634

    • If you send the equipment to our physical address, please send an email to the office at studentaccess@lists.clemson.eduto let us know to expect it, along with any shipping or tracking information.
    • If you plan to keep the equipment and return it to us at a later date, please let us know at studentaccess@lists.clemson.edu.
    • If the equipment is a microphone for remote captioning, please contact Nancy Dunne at nlassit@clemson.eduto determine if you should purchase insurance for shipping the microphone back to the office (based on cost of the equipment).
    • Students using software, such as Sonocent AudioNote, do not need to return any equipment to the office. The license will expire for the particular student at the end of the semester, and the student will need to request access for the next semester.
  • How is a student who is Deaf or Hard of Hearing provided accommodations in an online learning format?

    Students who are Deaf/HOH were contacted via email prior to leaving for Spring Break and encouraged to let Nancy Dunne know what their professors have planned for courses in which they have captioning or interpreting. The options are as follows, depending on the method of instruction chosen by the professor.

    • If the professor is planning to create pre-recorded lectures or other material that includes audio, the student should let Nancy know ASAP at nlassit@clemson.eduso that a transcript can be created and provided.
    • If the professor is planning to livestream a lecture, the student should let Nancy know ASAP so that the caption writer that normally works in that classroom can be notified and so that Nancy can make sure that the writer will be included in the livestream. Captions will be provided as typical. Students are also encouraged to communicate directly with the writer assigned to that class.
    • A student using ASL interpreters in the classroom has the option to have real-time captions or transcripts provided following the methods used above, or can have ASL interpreters for livestreamed lectures via Zoom meetings. For the second option, the student needs to let Nancy know ASAP so that the interpreter and Zoom meeting can be scheduled in time for the class.

    Any student who is Deaf/HOH should contact SAS if they are having difficulty with access to any component of a course, including videos, recorded lectures, real-time discussions, etc.

We will continue to develop this resource as we field questions and encounter unique situations.