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DOCUMENTS OF THE GENERAL FACULTY


RECOMMENDATION FROM THE EDUCATIONAL POLICY COMMITTEE
ON COURSE SUBSTITUTION AND WAIVER POLICY FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES


Robert A. Duke (Music), Chair of the Educational Policy Committee for 1998-99, has filed with the Secretary of the Faculty Council the recommendation from the Educational Policy Committee on Course Substitution and Waiver Policy for Students with Disabilities set forth below. The Secretary has classified this recommendation as general legislation. The 10-day circulation rule for general legislation will be satisfied on September 17, 1999.

Notice is hereby given that this legislation will be presented to the Faculty Council for action at its meeting on September 20, 1999.



<signed>

John R. Durbin, Secretary
The Faculty Council



Distributed through the Faculty Council web site (www.utexas.edu/faculty/council/) on September 8, 1999.  Copies are available on request from the Office of the General Faculty, FAC 22, F9500. </div>
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RECOMMENDATION FROM THE EDUCATIONAL POLICY COMMITTEE
ON COURSE SUBSTITUTION AND WAIVER POLICY FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES


Background.

Federal legislation, Section 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, stipulates that universities make every effort to integrate students with disabilities into all courses and programs. The University is not required to alter basic academic requirements; however, the University does need to "reasonably accommodate" students with disabilities. Specifically, the University "shall make such modifications to its academic requirements as are necessary to ensure that such requirements do not discriminate or have the effect of discriminating, on the basis of a disability, against a qualified applicant or student with a disability."

Typically, accommodations can be made to course procedures and assignments so that a student with disability satisfies the requirements of the course. Occasionally, the nature of the student's disability may necessitate a course waiver or substitution. In most situations, the student or the student in consultation with advisors will be able to determine that the characteristics of the student's disability would make it impossible or unreasonable for the student to be required to enroll in a specific course.

However, there are situations that are less clear such as those involving students with learning disabilities. Complicating factors are: the wide range in type and severity of the disability, the diagnosis of the disability, which is much more complex and often leaves some room for interpretation, and the ability in some cases to remediate through accommodations such as extended time on exams, tutoring, oral testing, extra take-home assignments, and so forth.


Recommendation.

The Educational Policy Committee recommends that the following policy be approved.

The University of Texas at Austin
The Office of the Dean of Students, Services for Students with Disabilities

Course Substitution and Waiver Policy



The following procedures are provided to guide academic units responsible for a student's program to assure compliance with the federal law and to support equitable accommodations for students with disabilities. These procedures are intended to provide knowledgeable support through dependable procedures that are timely and produce no unreasonable delays for the student. It is the policy of the University of Texas at Austin to examine the student's request for course substitution; such requests are examined on an individual basis in a manner that does not result in discrimination.