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An Institutional Perspective on Students with Disabilities in Postsecondary Education
NCES 1999046
August 1999

Materials and Activities Designed for Working with Students with Disabilities

This section provides information about education materials or activities that institutions provide for faculty and staff designed to assist them in working with students with disabilities. Faculty and staff need information about the rights of students with disabilities to receive services or accommodations, what kinds of services or accommodations are considered reasonable or appropriate, who at the institution can provide information and assistance, and how they can best assist students with disabilities with whom they work. This information may be provided to faculty and staff in numerous ways, such as mailings, presentations, or discussions. Institutions may also develop special outreach or recruitment materials or activities designed specifically to recruit students with disabilities. These outreach or recruitment materials may be provided to, or activities conducted with, various groups that may refer students for enrollment in the institution.

Education Materials and Activities for Faculty and Staff

All institutions, including those that did not enroll any students with disabilities in 1996-97 or 1997- 98, were asked about the education materials or activities that they provide for faculty and staff designed to assist them in working with students with disabilities. Eighty-four percent of all institutions provided at least one kind of education material or activity for faculty and staff (not shown in tables). The provision of various materials and activities ranged from 25 percent of all institutions providing annual mailings to faculty and staff to 79 percent providing one-onone discussions with faculty and staff who request information and assistance (table 13). Institutions that enrolled students with disabilities were more likely to provide each of the listed materials and activities than were institutions that did not enroll students with disabilities.

Almost all (95 percent) of the institutions that enrolled students with disabilities in 1996-97 or 1997-98 provided at least one kind of education material or activity for faculty and staff (not shown in tables). Among institutions that enrolled students with disabilities, most institutions (92 percent) provided one-on-one discussions with faculty and staff who request information or assistance (table 14). The provision of the other listed materials and activities ranged from 32 percent providing annual mailings to faculty and staff to 63 percent providing workshops and presentations to faculty groups. In general, public 2-year and 4-year institutions were more likely than private 2-year and 4-year institutions to provide the various kinds of education materials and activities. In addition, large institutions were more likely than medium institutions, which were more likely than small institutions, to provide the education materials and activities.

Outreach or Recruitment Materials or Activities Designed to Recruit Students with Disabilities

All institutions, including those that did not enroll any students with disabilities in 1996-97 or 1997- 98, were asked whether they had developed any special outreach or recruitment materials or activities designed specifically to recruit students with disabilities.13 A fifth of all institutions had developed such materials or activities (figure 4).

Institutions that enrolled students with disabilities in 1996-97 or 1997-98 were more likely to have developed special outreach or recruitment materials or activities than were institutions that did not enroll students with disabilities during that time. Among institutions that enrolled students with disabilities, public 2-year and 4- year institutions were more likely than private 2- year and 4-year institutions to have developed special outreach or recruitment materials or activities. In addition, large institutions were more likely than medium institutions, which were more likely than small institutions, to have developed such materials or activities (table 15).

Institutions that had developed special outreach or recruitment materials or activities were asked whether these materials had been provided to, or any of the activities conducted with, various groups that may refer students for enrollment in the institution. Among institutions that enrolled students with disabilities in 1996-97 or 1997-98, most had provided materials to or conducted activities with high school counselors or transition coordinators, and about three-quarters had done so with state vocational rehabilitation agencies (table 15). About half of the institutions had provided materials to or conducted activities with other types of vocational rehabilitation agencies, community and civic organizations, and other postsecondary institutions, and about a quarter had done so with businesses or employers. Medium and large institutions were more likely than small institutions to have provided materials to or conducted activities with high school counselors or transition coordinators, other postsecondary institutions, and other types of vocational rehabilitation agencies.


13 During recruitment efforts, postsecondary institutions are generally barred from making preadmission inquiries about whether an individual has a disability under the Section 504 regulations of the Department of Education.

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