Motor disabilities

     A motor impairment is the loss, partial or total, of function of a body part. It can be due to various reasons and lead to muscle weakness, altered stamina, lack of muscle control, or paralysis. It may result in one’s difficulty to move through their environment, express themselves (vocally or otherwise) and follow another abled person’s rhythm. People with a motor impairment may have different needs to complete a task which does not mean that they are unable to. For students, having a motor impairment can have various consequences, ranging from an inability to write, vocally express themselves, or walk and stand. It may also cause one constant or occasional physical pain as well as to be easily tired from physical efforts. In cases where one’s motor impairment is visible, perceived judgement from others can be psychologically taxing. 

In class

Situation
What is happening when the issue arises?

Issue
Why is the situation challenging?

Possible accommodation
How can the situation be made more accessible?

Notes taking

Some students cannot take notes as it causes them to miss part of a discussion or follow the class. This is problematic to study later on. 

- Use of the PowerPoint. 

 

- Making the PowerPoint available prior to class so that the student can prepare. 

 

- Slowing down when possible / applicable

Online: recording the class

Adapted position in the class 

Some students may experience difficulties moving in space or need larger space to do so. If they are not in an adapted position in the class, they might struggle moving quietly or quickly if needed (i.e., fire alarm). 

- Letting the student choose their position in class. 

 

Making sure others are aware of their position (either by the lecturer or by the student and if the student is comfortable with this) so that the student does not recurrently need to ask one to move.

Deadlines & Assignments

Situation
What is happening when the issue arises?

Issue
Why is the situation challenging?

Possible accommodation
How can the situation be made more accessible?

Many deadlines in the same week

Writing in any form can be a big complication for some students: not only is it more difficult because of a slow writing speed, but also because it can cause exhaustion and pain which can affect the rest of one’s body. 

- Extension 

- At the beginning of the semester, giving the option to move deadlines during the period to avoid overlap with other classes.

Written form  

For some students, writing is much more difficult than expressing themselves vocally.  

Some assessments such as weekly responses, or less substantial essays could be completed in a non-written form (completely or partially), such as audio or video recordings.

Examinations

Situation
What is happening when the issue arises?

Issue
Why is the situation challenging?

Possible accommodation
How can the situation be made more accessible?

Written examinations

The student might not have the time to complete the examination because of a slow writing speed. 

Extra time