Frequently Asked Questions
What can I do for a student who has a disability?
Any qualified student with a disability is entitled by law to reasonable accommodations according to the Americans with Disabilities Act. If a student identifies himself or herself as having a disability, the instructor may ask the student for an instructor memorandum, which documents the disability and describes the accommodations to be made. If the student does not yet have an instructor memorandum, contact Disability Resources.
You may also include a statement on your syllabus that invites students with disabilities to meet with you to discuss his/her needs. Here is a sample syllabus statement:
If you wish to request an accommodation due to a documented disability, please inform your instructor as soon as possible and contact Disability Resources at 412-268-2013 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can I help students find course-specific tutoring? Are there resources specifically for students who have difficulty with writing, study skills or time management/organization?
Academic Development sponsors individualized Peer Tutoring in addition to Supplemental Instruction for selected courses. Other services offered include writing and study skills workshops and assistance with time management and organization skills.
Students looking for tutors should also contact their departments, since some departments keep a list of students who are available to tutor for an hourly fee.
The Intercultural Communication Center offers a writing clinic for non-native speakers, which can be of particular help to many undergraduates.
What should I do if I have a student who appears to be having personal problems that interfere with his or her work?
Contact Counseling and Psychological Services. Counseling and Psychological Services attends to the personal, emotional, interpersonal, developmental and psychiatric out-patient needs of students in and out of the classroom. The office is staffed by qualified, credentialed professionals who possess demonstrated expertise in responding to the ongoing psychological and developmental needs of college students.
If further help seems necessary, Student Affairs can provide a liaison for the student's college to connect the student with appropriate support, counseling and resources as needed.
What should I do if a student has a convulsive seizure?
Call the Campus Police at 412-268-2323. Be sure to give the specific location on campus. At all times stay with the person who is having the seizure to protect him/her from injury. If you are alone, the priority is to stay with the person and call out for help. Please follow these simple steps:
- Keep calm and reassure other people who may be nearby. Stay with the person until the seizure ends naturally or ask someone else to do so.
- Gently turn the person onto his/her side. This will help keep the airway clear.
- Clear the area around the person of anything hard or sharp. DO NOT restrain the person.
- Put something flat and soft, like a folded jacket, under the head.
- Loosen ties or anything around the neck that may make breathing difficult.
- Do not try to force his/her mouth open with any hard implement or with fingers. It is not true that a person having a seizure can swallow his or her tongue, and efforts to hold the tongue down can injure the teeth or jaw.
- Look for personal identification and/or medical ID that identifies the person as having a seizure disorder or other medical condition or problem.
- Be friendly and reassuring as consciousness returns.
For further information, contact University Health Services.