IWS will assure that necessary steps are taken to ensure that no qualified student with a disability is denied the benefits of student status, or is otherwise subjected to discrimination while enrolled in IWS.
The Institute for Worship Studies is committed to providing equal access to educational opportunities to qualified students with physical or mental disabilities as intended by section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Since we are hosted by several area churches, IWS is limited in its facilities accommodations to students with physical disabilities. Nevertheless, IWS is committed to making all necessary and reasonable arrangements for such students.
Being an educational institution, this policy is primarily concerned about learning disabilities. A “person with a disability” is someone with an impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; has a record of such an impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment. A qualified student or applicant with a disability is an individual who, without reasonable accommodation, cannot perform the usual essential functions of a student.
Disabilities may be physical, emotional or behavioral, learning, and intellectual or developmental. While there are many types of disabilities that impact learning, most often they impact spoken language (listening and speaking); written language (reading, writing and spelling); arithmetic (calculation and mathematical concepts); and reasoning (organization and integration of ideas and thoughts).
However, accommodations must match and mitigate the student’s functional limitations. Limitations in learning may be auditory perception and processing, visual perception and processing, information processing speed, abstract reasoning, memory, spoken and written language, planning and time management and the like. Each of these requires different accommodations.
Therefore, a student with a disability must:
- Provide the Registrar with the exact nature of his or her learning limitations (preferably with document verification), when registering for a course.
- IWS may require documentation to substantiate a disability. Documentation may include official medical diagnosis, psychological evaluations, etc. If the institute finds that the documentation is not adequate to support the existence of a disability or that it does not show the disability to be limiting in the work or school environment, additional documentation may be required. The compliance officer is the Registrar. For academic accommodation, contact the Registrar and the Academic Dean. For physical accessibility only, contact the Registrar.
- Indicate how these limitations affect your learning (e.g., from the list above),
- And what kinds of accommodations might be helpful (e.g., special seating, enlarged print, extended deadlines for assignments, taped texts or books on tape, taped lectures, peer note taker, tutor/mentor, tailored practical assignments, or other accommodations as requested and approved). These must match the disability and alleviate the limitations caused by the disability.
- If the request is approved by the appropriate authorit(ies), the student must also inform the faculty member(s) of the course early enough to allow time to negotiate reasonable accommodations before the course begins.
The Institute’s Responsibility
- Review the student’s request by the appropriate authority(ies);
- Evaluate the merits of the request, with appropriate resources and consultation, if needed;
- Suggest reasonable accommodation(s), where appropriate;
- Secure approval of the faculty member(s) involved;
- Secure approve of the student;
- Document the evaluation process and reasonable accommodations agreed upon; and
- Follow up with faculty members and the student to assure that the reasonable accommodations were appropriate and effective.