Syllabus Statement for Faculty
Syllabi statements represent disability as an aspect of diversity, social justice, and equity and recognize the importance of inclusive course design and effective provision of accommodations. The following is a suggested statement for Willamette University faculty to include in their syllabi:
Diversity and Disability Statement:
Willamette University values diversity and inclusion; we are committed to a climate of mutual respect and full participation. Our goal is to create learning environments that are usable, equitable, inclusive and welcoming. If there are aspects of the instruction or design of this course that result in barriers to your inclusion or accurate assessment or achievement, please notify the instructor as soon as possible. Students with disabilities are also encouraged to contact the Accessible Education Services office in Matthews 103 at 503-370-6737 or email@example.com to discuss a range of options to removing barriers in the course, including accommodations.
Universal Design for Learning
Universal Design for Learning is an approach to education that minimizes barriers and maximizes learning for all students. Provided are guidelines and strategies for incorporating Universal Design into your curriculum, as well as helpful classroom and mobile resources.
Many examples of Universal Design that are being used successfully in the classroom are available online. New methods, techniques, and resources are created every day. Dr. Sheryl Burgstahler, founder of the University of Washington's DO-IT Center, edited a free online book, Universal Design in Higher Education: Promising Practices, which provides examples of how Universal Design is currently practiced on campuses nationwide.
Transparency in Learning and Teaching (TILT)
Transparency in Learning and Teaching (TILT) is a progressive Universal Design project that aims to improve college learning and teaching experiences for the benefit of students and faculty. TILT’s transparent teaching methods help students understand how and why they are learning course content in particular ways, resulting in students’ improved academic confidence, stronger sense of belonging in school, and greater awareness that they are mastering skills that future employers will seek. Research by TILT’s founder, Dr. Mary-Ann Winkelmes of the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, showed that in a study of 1800 students with 35 faculty members participating, the replication of her methods in just two assignments increased freshman retention from 74.1% to 90.2% persisting into the following October. Moreover, these evidence-based methods support the promotion of a socially just campus where faculty recognize that not all students are already prepared to identify the purposes and criteria for their academic work. A summary of Dr. Winkelmes's research and its implications can be found in the article "A Teaching Intervention that Increases Underserved College Students’ Success."
How can I use TILT to make my assignments more transparent?
Willamette's "Classroom Tales" page offers resources on transparent teaching that were shared during the October 6, 2016 workshop. This “Transparent Assignment Template” provides faculty a format for designing a transparent assignment. In addition, faculty who are implementing TILT methods in their assignments can discuss their assignments and share ideas with other educators via virtual monthly meet-ups called “Transparent Tuesdays,” which take place on the second Tuesday of each month at 2pm. The University of Nevada-Las Vegas provides several examples of transparent assignments in different disciplines.
Handy cheat sheets for creating accessible content in various forms and programs.
E-book sites: Project Gutenberg (which also links to sites with e-books in other languages), Bartleby (which includes fiction, non-fiction, verse and reference books), Bibliomania or LibriVox which has free public domain audiobooks.
TechMatrix: A resource search engine which can be customized by content as well as by learning disability.
Captioning options: Search from a library of captioned media. or from captioned videos from youtube of vimeo. There are also resources available which will help you to caption your video or caption an older video if a captioned version cannot be found.