With advancements in technology and medicine, federal and state mandates, and increased disability education and awareness, more students with disabilities are attending college than ever before. According to recent research done by the National Center for Education Statistics, eleven percent of undergraduate students enrolled in postsecondary institutions reported having a disability. At Towson University, approximately 1,300 students have identified themselves as having a disability and have requested accommodations and/or services through the Disability Support Services office.
Disability Support Services (DSS) supports the mission of Towson University by promoting inclusive learning environments that are accessible to the largest number of students possible. As the number of students pursuing postsecondary education increases, so does the degree of diversity in learning styles and needs. DSS recognizes disability as an aspect of diversity that is integral to society and to the campus community and collaborates with students, faculty and staff to create accessible and inclusive learning environments.
Every day we are challenged to be creative in meeting the needs of all students. Teaching practices such as using a multi-sensory approach in presentations, supplementing class lectures with handouts or posting them electronically, organizing syllabi so that class objectives assignments and due dates are clear, and being available for student conferences optimize learning for all students but particularly those with disabilities. While using diverse teaching methods is important, it should be notes that students with disabilities may continue to need reasonable accommodations.
The DSS Faculty Guide for Teaching and Accommodating Students with Disabilities is intended to serve as a resource for faculty and staff to use when teaching, accommodating and advising students with disabilities. DSS staff are also available to consult personally with faculty and staff regarding students with disabilities. We look forward to collaborating with you as we work together to provide our students with an optimal educational experience.