Accommodations: What are they? How are they determined? How are they provided?
Accommodations are academic adjustments, resources and/or equipment that allow a Rice student with a disability to have equal access to academic programs, and to share in full participation with the Rice university community. Accommodations are made on an individual basis and are based on the functional limitations posed by the disabling condition(s).
Accommodations may include, but are not limited to:
- Assistive listening devices
- Sign language interpreters
- Captioning services (CART)
- Extended time on examinations
- Distraction-reduced examinations
- Braille materials
- Books in an alternative format (audio or e-texts)
- Desktop video magnifiers (CCTVs)
- Note taking or assistance with lecture notes
- Specialized computer software
Accommodation letters are developed collaboratively by the director of the DRC and the student with a disability. These letters are for the student’s professors and indicate recommended accommodations. The nature of individual courses and course requirements vary. Therefore, the ways in which a student at Rice with a disability is functionally limited will impact some classes differently than others.
Rice students who have injuries, surgeries or other conditions which will temporarily restrict them on campus can contact the Disability Resource Center (DRC). If short-term assistance is required, a medical statement may be necessary if equipment is checked-out to the student during recovery. For mobility equipment such as scooters or the golf cart, medical documentation and a security deposit will be necessary for check-out. Individuals in need of mobility equipment should contact the DRC prior to visiting the office.
Adaptive Technology Available
An Adaptive Technology (AT) lab which is located in Fondren Library room 108, is available for students admitted to Rice. The following is a list of some of the available technologies:
- Desktop video magnifier (CCTV) - used for magnification of printed materials
- JAWS screen reading software - used to make to make computers accessible to blind and visually impaired students
- Refreshable Braille display
- Kurzweil 3000 – software used to scan and read materials for students with learning disabilities or blind/visually impaired
- Dragon NaturallySpeaking
- Zoom Text – software used to magnify materials on a computer screen
At the DRC office, located in Allen Center - Room 111, the following technologies are used to produce materials for students as needed:
- High-speed scanner with optical character recognition (OCR) software
- Braille embossers for text and figures/tactile graphics
Certain pieces of adaptive technology equipment are also available for check-out from the DRC office. These include:
- Hand held SenseView Duo magnifier - used for magnification of printed materials
- Assistive listening devices
- Adapted CD players – for use with certain audio books
- Manual (push) wheelchair
- Mobility scooters or golf carts
- TDD for students with hearing impairments
- Audio recording devices
The DRC staff, in addition to producing academic materials for students, also offers training on various types of adaptive technology. For details, contact the DRC at Allen Center - Room 111 or by phone at 713-348-5841.
The Disability Resource Center (DRC) works closely with the Rice Study Abroad staff. Rice students with disabilities are encouraged to consider studying abroad. While the laws of foreign countries may not mirror those in the U.S., the DRC and International Programs work to facilitate equivalent access in study abroad programs regarding the provision of accommodations. Rice students with a range of disabilities including learning disabilities, hearing loss, blindness, and health impairments have successfully studied abroad in a variety of countries.
Mobility International USA (MIUSA) is an excellent resource for information about travel and study abroad for individuals with disabilities.