2018 AHEAD Conference Poster Sessions

Thursday Poster Sessions: 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Beyond Equity and Access: Fostering an Inclusive Campus Climate for Postsecondary Students with Autism Who are Non-speaking
Talar Touloumdjian, M.S., California State University Channel Islands
Valeri Cirino-Paez, M.S., California State University Channel Islands

Given the increasing enrollment of postsecondary students with autism across the U.S., many campuses have developed specialized ASD programs. However, are campuses across the nation prepared for students with ASD who are non-speaking? This poster presentation will provide an overview of how CSU Channel Islands is fostering an inclusive campus climate for a successful student with ASD who is non-speaking. The presenters will share their challenges/successes, and offer ways to foster an inclusive campus climate.


Create Accessible Computing Labs: An Accessibility Checklist
Lyla Crawford, M.S., DO-IT, University of Washington

The University of Virginia will demonstrate an online reporting mechanism to address and remediate accessibility issues in the academic, digital, and built environments. Created in-house, "Report A Barrier" is software designed to allow anyone to report a barrier to access. We will discuss the major functional areas across the University that were essential to successfully deploying this tool, the mechanics of how the software works, the communication flow, and how barriers are remediated.


Creating A Future:  Understanding the Needs of Students Living with Autism Spectrum Disorders in Higher Education
Sarah F. Parsons

This poster shares research that explored why students living with autism (ASD) graduate from four-year colleges and universities at a significantly lower rate than their peers not living with ASD. A review of the data, the characteristics of students living with ASD, and the inherent difficulties of unsympathetic higher education environments lay the groundwork for understanding the research interviews. The project resulted in the ASD College Screening Tool.


Mental Health Awareness Video Competition (MHAVC): 2017 SUNY Program Award Winner
Susan Mann Dolce, Ph.D., University at Buffalo

The Mental Health Awareness Video Competition (MHAVC) is a collaborative program between the University at Buffalo Counseling Center and Accessibility Resources.  Stigma and lack of information often contribute to negative attitudes towards individuals with mental health conditions. Negative attitudes may affect student engagement on campus and may discourage students from seeking appropriate support. Learn about the program and watch the winning videos!


The Influence of a University Peer-Mentoring Program on Student Disability Identity Development

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Vanessa S. Cohen, Ed.D., Montgomery County Community College

 A study was conducted to examine the impacts of a peer-mentoring program designed for registered students with disabilities, with specific attention on the disability identity development of students. The presentation will include findings from this mixed-methodological study, in which semi-structured individual interviews and survey based research methods were administered at a large, public, 4-year institution in the Northeast.


Proposed Guidelines for Disability Services in Singapore’s Institutes of Higher Learning
Eugene Ng, M.Ed., Singapore Management University
Nix Sang, Postgraduate Diploma, Singapore Management University

Disability services in Singapore’s Higher Education sector tend to vary in terms of structure and consistency, resulting in a need for alignment across Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs). In an effort to contribute to assisting in raising standards and capabilities in disability services at IHLs, the Singapore Management University applied for, and received a national grant to pioneer the development of a set of proposed guidelines for disability services in Singapore’s IHLs by contextualizing and localizing international best practices. This presentation introduces the processes involved in developing these guidelines, and invites participants to offer suggestions to improve on the project, so that IHLs can better support and advance learning access for students with disabilities.


Lose the Paper, Gain Accessibility: How to Effectively Transition to a Paperless Office
Ashley Ciccolini Erickson, M.Ed., Florida Atlantic University
Courtney McGonagle, M.Ed., Florida Atlantic University

Most disability offices utilize paper forms in multiple aspects of their process, including initial applications, documentation, accommodation requests, accommodation letters, testing forms, and notes. Potential issues with paper use include inaccessibility to students, inconvenience to professors, lack of office space, and negative effects on the environment. The presenters will discuss what a paperless office looks like and the benefits it provides to students, faculty, and staff.


Campus Collaborations, Strategies, and our Journey to Closed Captioning
Stuart Buckley, B.A., Florida Atlantic University
Mike Robichaux, B.A., Docsoft Inc.

Florida Atlantic University recently embarked on a journey to use a closed captioning appliance as a way to provide our own closed captioning on campus. This was a strategy to keep costs low, utilize student workers and volunteers and get faculty engaged in the process of providing accessibility for their media content. We report on strategies and successes of this initiative along with the workflow and a demonstration of the captioning process through Docsoft.


Remote Communication Access Services: A Decision-Making Model for Effective Implementation and Use
Tia Ivanko, M.S., National Deaf Center for Postsecondary Outcomes

Deaf student enrollment in colleges across the country are on the rise, and securing access services can be difficult for institutions. Remote communication access services are viable options for institutions, but they may not be an effective solution. This session will provide professionals with tools to assess their institutional capacity and implement effective remote services.


UDL and Student Engagement in Higher Education: A Pilot Project

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Anna Barrafato, M.A., Concordia University
Gordon Dionne, M.A., Concordia University
Miranda D'Amico, Ph.D., Concordia University
Mireille Paquet, Ph.D., Concordia University

Faculty and administrators in higher education have long been concerned with student engagement on college campuses and how it pertains to interest, motivation, and student success. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) holds the potential to address some of these pressing issues. Findings of a 2-year pilot project measuring student engagement in intervention (UDL) versus comparison groups will be presented. Faculty perception and attitude toward re-designing their courses will be considered. Implications for faculty buy-in will be discussed.

The Relationship Between Support Needs, Grades, and Needs for Consultation of Students with ASD and/or ADHD in Japanese University

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Ginga Sasaki, Ph.D., University of Tsukuba, Japan
Tomone Takahashi, Ph.D., Shinshu University, Japan
Kazunori Takeda, Ph.D., Univeristy of Tsukuba, Japan

 In order to better understand the support needs of students with ASD/ADHD, the relationship between need for support, grades, and need for consultation from student support staffs were examined. 1,158 Japanese college students participated in the study. Support needs related with distractibility and difficulty in planning increased as academic demand related with research activities increased in the junior and senior years. This change is also related with the needs for consultation.

CANCELLED: Building a Digital Braille Music Repository:  A Call for Collaboration
David Perrotta, Library of Congress
Juliette Appold, Library of Congress

The Library of Congress' National Library Service for the Blind & Physically Handicapped is developing a Digital Braille Music Repository for the mutual benefit of institutions that provide on-request Braille transcription of sheet music. Participating institutions can contribute to and obtain materials from the Repository, eliminating duplication of effort and enabling faster turnaround for end users. Representatives from LOC will outline their ideas for the initial phase of the project and seek input.

From Madhouse to Schoolhouse: A Journey through Disability Culture in Education
Sean Kugler, M.Ed., Northern Arizona University
Matthew Wangeman, M.A., Northern Arizona University
Dorianne Pollack, M.Ed., M.A., Northern Arizona University
Chris Lanterman, Ed.D, Northern Arizona University
Chelsey Tarazi, B.S., Tarazi

The presenters, specialists, faculty, and students, will be available for a discussion of multiple topics within disability and culture. Topics include "inspiration porn;" other vs. us; the meaning of Disability Culture; how history has shaped our culture for good or bad; and 21st Century technology (is it accessible?


Attitudinal Outcomes of College Students Toward Inclusion of Students with Disabilities
Turki Alqarni, Ph.D. Candidate, Saint Louis University

The purpose of this study was to explore students' attitudes toward inclusion and social justice for people with disabilities in the university. A total of 166 college students completed an online questionnaire with 39 items. Overall, statistically significant results showed a negative correlation between knowledge and thoughts about disability: the less knowledge about disability, the more negative the students’ thoughts about disability.


Enhancing Accessibility in the Classroom Through Dynamic Faculty Learning Communities: The Faculty Perspective
Carol Marchetti, Ph.D., Rochester Inst of Technology
W. Scot Atkins, Ed.D., Rochester Institute of Technology
Sara Schley, Ed.D., Rochester Institute of Technology

An NSF-funded initiative aimed at enhancing access, engagement, and academic success of Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) students in STEM-based courses at Rochester Institute of Technology. The project goal is to improve resources for faculty teaching DHH students in mainstreamed settings through an Accessibility Toolkit (ATK) and a learning community in which faculty are encouraged to experiment and innovate new ways to provide a more accessible and inclusive environment for DHH students. Faculty work with assigned DHH student-mentors to enrich their learning about how to best provide access to DHH students. This poster outlines the process of faculty learning community implementation and the impact on faculty engaged in those communities.


Awareness and Use of People First Language: A Focus on Undergraduate and Graduate College Students
Holly Hoffman, Ph.D., Central Michigan University
Marie Hengesbach, B.S.., Central Michigan University
Shana Trotter, B.S., Central Michigan University

Supportive environments, inclusive to all populations, is of utmost importance. A survey of college students assessed the perceptions and awareness level of person first-language. Nearly 600 students with a wide variety of majors ranked their awareness of the field of special education as minimal (45%); familiarity with people-first language very familiar (43%); value on the use of people-first language as extremely valuable (40%). Details impacting the use of people-first language are highlighted.


Engineering Social Success: How to Collaboratively and Universally Support Students with Social Barriers at the Postsecondary Level
Patty Eaton, Ed.S, Rose-Hulman

The Engineering Social Success series was designed to assist post-secondary students in overcoming barriers in a variety of social settings: classroom, small group, casual, professional, business, and interview settings. The initiative is a collaboration with the Student Counseling Center and Career Services department.

CANCELLED: Faculty Attitudes toward Students’ Disabilities and Faculty Readiness to Accommodate Students with Learning Disabilities in Postsecondary Education
Ameen Alhaznawi, M.A., University of Jeddah & Concordia University Chicago

This research identifies faculty attitudes and perceived knowledge of accommodations for students with learning disabilities in postsecondary education. Th goal is to understand factors that positively or negatively formulate the faculty members’ attitude towards disabled students. With enhanced understanding, educators and policymakers can formulate effective policies to promote positive attitudes, address possible obstacles, and help students accomplish their academic goals. The research results will clarify the possible moderating impact of gender, staff rnks, staff status, and years of experience and explain how these factors may affect attituds, and perceptions of faculty towards students with learning disabilities.

Four Educators Walk Into a Bar: Universal Design, Leadership, and Organizational Change
Kathy Hoppe, D.Min., Central New Mexico Community College

Four educators walk into a bar: a faculty member, a faculty trainer, a disability specialist, and an administrator. All four share their experience with the implementation of universal design at a large, urban southwestern community college. This study uses autoethnographic methodology coupled with faculty and staff surveys, to analyze institutional culture change towards universal design.  Institutional change theory and best practices in universal design frame this study.

Equitable Opportunity: The Impact of Disability Management Curriculum on Independent Living Status and Self-Sufficiency
Eric Peebles, Ph.D., Auburn University

This poster shares the results of a descriptive research study and informs and challenges participants to probe further into the how disability curriculum contributes to the economic self-sufficiency of graduates with significant disabilities. It includes a review of related research and literature, which serve as a theoretical framework for supporting and encouraging self-determination and self-management skills. Self-sufficiency is addressed from an economic and personal perspective.

Enhancing Accessibility in the Classroom through Dynamic Faculty Learning Communities: The Student Perspective

Carol Marchetti, Ph.D., Rochester Inst of Technology
W. Scot Atkins, Ed.D., Rochester Institute of Technology
Sara Schley, Ed.D., Rochester Institute of Technology

 A new initiative (funded by NSF) focuses on enhancing access, engagement, and academic success of Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) students taking STEM-based post-secondary courses at the Rochester Institute of Technology. The goal for this project is to improve resources available for faculty teaching DHH students in mainstreamed settings by creating an Accessibility Toolkit (ATK) and a learning community. This poster session will outline the implementation of faculty learning communities from the perspectives of the student mentors.

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Friday Poster Sessions 10:00 am – 11:30 am

CANCELLED: Student Perceptions of Trauma Informed Care in Higher Education: Summary of Findings and Recommendations for Improved Practices

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Ashley Ellison, A.A., Eastern Washington University
Susan Ruby, Ph.D., Eastern Washington University

Research regarding Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) indicates a need for trauma informed instructional practices in classrooms (SAMHSA, 2012). While promising practices are emerging through research in the K-12 public school system, limited research exists regarding trauma informed practices in higher education settings. This presentation summarizes promising practices from the literature and findings from two studies. The first study used a survey to investigate levels of student reported ACEs in higher education and awareness, use, and satisfaction with services aimed to support students who have experienced trauma. The second study investigates student perceptions of trauma-informed care in the classroom through focus groups.


Identifying Interventions That Work: A Longitudinal Transition Study

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Lyla Crawford, M.S., DO-IT, University of Washington

This poster session will share the results of a longitudinal transition study currently being conducted by the DO-IT program. Analysis of data collected from 472 students with disabilities indicates which activities they consider most beneficial and which are most important for achieving positive postsecondary outcomes.


Show Me the Money! Everything you Need to Know About Scholarships
Ashley Ciccolini Erickson, M.Ed., Florida Atlantic University

Scholarships are an advantageous way for students to receive financial aid and limit their debt after graduation. They can be especially beneficial for students with disabilities because they allow them to focus on school without having the added stress of paying for their education. What scholarships are available specifically to students with disabilities?  This poster will provide a step-by-step guide on how to facilitate the scholarship process in an Accessibility Office.


Forming Effective Collaborations to Implement Creative Solutions for Accommodating Music Students with Visual Impairments
Stuart Buckley, B.A., Florida Atlantic University

Accommodating students with visual impairments who are studying in Music programs can be a daunting process for a Disability Service Provider. We break down the components of developing effective collaborations with Music faculty to provide accessible instructional materials and assistive technologies to ensure success for students in this area of study. Case studies are highlighted to illustrate lessons learned and discoveries that led to effective student learning.

Deaf Students Abroad: A Proactive and Collaborative Approach
Stephanie Zito, M.A., National Deaf Center for Postsecondary Outcomes
Lauren Kinast, M.A., National Deaf Center for Postsecondary Outcomes

An increasing number of deaf students are participating in study abroad experiences leaving colleges with questions on how to arrange effective accommodations. Many factors influence study abroad accommodations, and there isn’t a uniform set of guidelines for coordinating services for deaf students participating in study abroad experiences. The goal of this session will be to present participants with a checklist tool to guide the planning process including locating and contracting service providers, arranging travel logistics, arranging funding, etc. Participants will have an opportunity to engage in discussions on common practices and strategies used by various institutions.


Key Aspects of Transition Planning for Students with Disabilities
Irina Tzoneva, Ph.D., Douglas College

This poster will provide a critical review of the key aspects of the transition process for students with disabilities. It will examine the research literature and will explore the successful pathways from high school to college. The poster outlines recommendations to support effective transition in the areas of planning in high school, post-secondary programming and support, and policy development. The model of service delivery currently being implemented through a partnership between a community college and a school district in British Columbia, Canada will be described. 


Exploring the Transformative Potential of the Social Model of Disability

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Jaski Kohli, Ed.D., California State University, East Bay

This poster presents the findings of a qualitative study that examined the lived experiences of college students with disabilities. By conducting a workshop framed by the transformative learning theory, as well as, pre- and post-interviews, the study analyzed students’ perspectives on disability and their identities.


An Intermediate View of Assessing and Supporting Students with Dyslexia in Higher Education
Gregory Richardson, Ph.D., Azusa Pacific University

Record numbers of students with dyslexia are enrolling in higher education. However, many never complete their academic program, and known barriers are both personal and systematic. Working with students, a researcher collects personal experiences to validate perceived dyslexia and ascertains successful academic strategies in the process. Come and discuss how to identify and assist these students, diagnosed or not, in achieving their post-secondary academic goals.


Challenges, Needs, Perspectives, and Future for Higher Education for Students with Autism in Saudi Arabia
Hamaed Almutairi, Qassim University, Saudi Arabia

Contemporary education systems around the world are making steps towards inclusion of learners with disabilities. In many developed and developing countries, progress has been happening for decades. However, systems of education can be resistant to change. The process of studying and attending school can be complicated for students with autism due to a variety of factors, including the lack of readiness of educational facilities to incorporate disabled learners. This proposal focuses on educational equity for students with autism in Saudi Arabia, where there are currently no programs for students with disabilities to access the higher education.

In the Mean Time (pun intended): Math/STEM Accessibility Through Accessibility Tutors, Campus Collaboration and Assistive Technology
Aura Hirschman, M.S. Rehabilitation Counseling, Univ of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Jeb Willenbring, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Shannon Aylesworth, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

While STEM accessibility is improving, it is still a challenge for college students, disability service professionals, and professors, for both required coursework and students majoring in STEM occupations. What do we do in the "mean time" while we are waiting for better solutions? This poster offers ideas on campus and community collaborations to make STEM courses more accessible for all students, using accessibility tutoring, promoting accessible course materials, and using assistive technology.

Conducting a Program Review of the Disability Office
Ann Knettler, M.A., Delaware State University
Jean Ashmore, M.S., Emerita, Rice University; Consultant

AHEAD’s representatives to the Council for the Advancement of Standards (CAS) outline steps to follow in completing a comprehensive program review of a disability resources and services office. CAS Standards and program review tools will be highlighted. Jean and Ann will be available to answer questions about applying CAS standards, assembling a review committee, developing program and learning outcomes, and more.  

Early Arrival Program for Students with ASD- Collaborating to Form Partnerships on Campus for Students’ Success
Michelle Hayes, B.S., University of West Florida
Sylvia Patterson, University of West Florida

The two-day Early Arrival Program for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) offered the opportunity for incoming freshmen and transfer students to acclimate to the campus prior to the first day of Fall classes. The program consisted of demonstrations, workshops and strategic campus orientations presented by campus partners from Housing, Wellness, Student Involvement, Title IX and others. Valuable information and resources were also provided to enhance their transition to university life and ability to connect with other people with similar diagnoses.

The Stories Behind Universal Design, Accessibility, and Diversity: A Video Curriculum for Faculty
Marla Christine Roll, Colorado State University
Anna Walker, Colorado State University
Shannon Lavey, Colorado State University

Colorado State University's Assistive Technology Resource Center will showcase a new video series that employs first-person storytelling to personalize the concepts of disability and diversity, accessibility, and inclusion to help educators understand the benefits of universally designed learning materials. Faculty who watch these videos will, we believe, feel motivated to learn how to meet the needs of all types of learners in their classrooms, leading to increased participation in UD trainings.


Structure and Strategies: Supporting Individuals with High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder
Robyn Otty, OTD, OTR/L, BCPR, Touro University Nevada

Young people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) often exhibit executive functioning (EF) difficulties that largely inhibit their ability to successfully manage college life. In addition to EF limitations, these individuals often possess reduced "soft skills" necessary to mitigate implicit social expectations that can further impair their interactions with faculty and peers.


Juggling the College Experience and Multiple Sclerosis: A Focus on Student Experiences

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Holly Hoffman, Ph.D., Central Michigan University

The purpose of our research is to identify aspects of college life that pose challenges, as well as to provide new opportunities for students diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). Two different studies, one examining college student experiences and the other focusing on parents raising children with MS are highlighted in this presentation. Information presented during this session includes a summary of effective coping mechanisms, resources, and implications in support of college students with MS.

Analyzing Academic Equity Gaps Among Undergraduate Students with Disabilities
Debra Miller, M.A,, Northern Illinois University

An academic equity group at a midwestern university found that undergraduate students with disabilities were not performing as well academically as students without disabilities in common undergraduate courses. Students with disabilities were also not returning to school at a higher rate, compared to peers without disabilities. Possible factors influencing academic equity gaps among college students with disabilities could include: 1) impairment itself; 2) instructor supports; 3) academic accommodations; 4) institutional supports; 5) physical, technological, or attitudinal barriers. The researchers surveyed students with disabilities enrolled in these courses to learn about factors that influence their academic success. Electronic surveys were followed by focus groups.

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