Remote Participation Request
Remote Participation Accommodation Application Process
Western Washington University has primarily returned to in-person instruction. Most of the university’s academic programs have essential in-person components. Remote participation (RP) may be approved as a reasonable accommodation if a student’s disability means that they're unable to participate in person.
Remote Participation eligible students are approved for one quarter at a time and will need to be reviewed and approved for subsequent quarters. Approval is contingent upon determining feasibility for the student’s courses in collaboration with faculty and must not constitute a *fundamental alteration of learning objectives.
Remote Participation is not intended to convert an in-person program into an all-virtual experience. DAC recognizes the potential for differential experiences of students engaging remotely in courses designed to be taught in-person. This means that technical difficulties and other factors will impact the educational experience. Remote Participation isn't a 1:1 replacement for in-person classes.
*While the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) ensures that public institutions, including WWU, are legally obligated to provide students any modification or adjustment to the academic environment that will enable a qualified student with a disability to participate, such modification must not fundamentally alter the nature of its service, program, or activity. (ADA Title II Technical Assistance Manual). Faculty have a right to identify instances of their course objectives being fundamentally altered by accommodations and may deny accommodations as a result upon engagement in a deliberative process with the DAC.
The Remote Participation Request process is for students experiencing disability-related barriers to in-person attendance.
Implementing Remote Participation accommodations requires the DAC to work with outside advisors to identify organic options. If none are available, the DAC will consult with departments to determine whether the accommodation can be implemented without fundamentally altering the course learning objectives. Students should plan for 3-4 weeks to implement accommodations.
- Students will need to apply for remote participation for each quarter.
- Please noted that fully implementing RP can take 3-4 weeks.
- Students may need to submit third-party supporting documentation which addresses the following:
- The student’s diagnoses relevant to this request.
- A statement of support for remote participation, including an estimated end date when the student should be able to resume in-person participation.
- A description of how the student’s disability creates a significant barrier to their full and meaningful participation in an on-campus experience.
- The student and the DAC will meet with advisors to determine whether organic online alternatives to the class already exist
- DAC assistance with fees for online classes available
- If no online options are available, is the class required for the student's major?
- If so, is an Independent Study or course substitution feasible?
- If the class must be completed and no organic alternatives are available, the course may be eligible for Remote Participation accommodations.
- Some courses may not be completed remotely
- In limited cases, the DAC may provide facilitation of Remote Participation services in the classroom.
- Your access manager will present your case to the DAC Accommodation Committee to discuss each case and make final determination as to the reasonableness of the request. The access manager will let you know if your request has been approved or denied and inform you of your options.
Step 1: Contact your academic advisor
If you want to take an in-person class remotely, you should first contact an academic advisor to determine if there are existing online classes that meet your needs. The Academic Advising and Student Achievement Center can assist with this planning. Students in a declared major or minor should contact their academic department assigned advisor regarding that coursework. The DAC will provide guidance along the way and help get you connected to the appropriate advisor and can also help arrange meetings with the advisors.
Questions to ask an advisor:
- Is this class offered in a different modality (remotely?)
- Are there alternative course options that I can take (that are already remote) that count towards requirements (GUR, major, minor, plan of study)?
If the answer to both of these questions is "no," proceed to step 2.
Please note: Skipping step one will result in a longer process for you as you will be redirected to complete this step.
Step 2: Cannot participate in a class with the in-person modality offered
If you're new to DAC, complete a DAC new student application.
Already a DAC student? Please send third-party supporting documentation specific to your need to participate remotely and ask to meet with your access manager to discuss this accommodation request (see “Will I Need Documentation” below). Email documentation to DRSFrontDesk@wwu.edu.
Step 3: DAC staff member will meet with you to explore options
In this meeting, we'll talk about your disability or medical condition, your supporting-third party documentation, and your class formats. You'll have a chance to tell us anything we need to know about your remote participation accommodation request.
To implement remote participation, we engage in a coordinated effort with people outside of the DAC. Typical time to implement is about 3-4 weeks. This is an estimate and may be different for a specific accommodation.
The DAC strives to follow AHEAD's documentation guidelines, which recommends accepting a student's narrative and personal experience as a primary form of documentation. However, we often require supporting third-party documentation to help us assess Remote Participation requests.
A healthcare provider’s letter of support must include the following:
- A description of your professional relationship.
- A confirmation of your relevant medical or mental health diagnoses.
- A statement of support for remote participation, including an estimated end date when you can return to in-person classes.
- A description of how your disability creates a significant barrier to your full and meaningful participation in an on-campus experience.