Accessibility Service Policy
Eugene McDermott Library offers a wide range of services for users with disabilities. However, we recognize that sometimes special assistance is needed to use some resources. To ensure staff availability, we encourage users to give advance notice to make full use of our services and resources.
General Help for Students with Disabilities – UTD Student AccessAbility Office
Working with Sign Language Interpreters
Sign language interpreters are professionals who provide the necessary communication link between hearing and deaf, or hard of hearing individuals. Interpreters hired by The University of Texas at Dallas follow a professional code of conduct developed by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf. When you are working with an interpreter, consider the following communication tips:
- Communicate directly to the student. Speak as if the interpreter was not present.
- Speak in first person, “I” and let the interpreter be your voice.
- Maintain eye contact with the student, not the interpreter.
- Speak at your normal pace using natural gestures and expressions.
- Be aware that the interpreter will interpret everything that is said. If you do not want something interpreted, do not say it.
- Maintain a clear line of visual contact among the interpreter, and the student who is deaf, or hard of hearing.
- Make sure there is adequate lighting for the student to see the interpreter during presentations using technology, such as PowerPoint presentations, film/videos, or other web-based materials.
- Provide the interpreter with necessary course information in advance, such as lecture materials, PowerPoint slides and supplemental reading to enhance course materials. This additional information will enable the interpreter to more effectively convey the course content.
- Be sensitive to class sessions or meetings extending longer than one hour. The interpreter may require a short break in order to maintain proficiency in interpreting.
- If the student who is deaf or hard of hearing does not show up for class or a meeting, the interpreter will generally wait 15 minutes then will notify the Office of Student AccessAbility.
- Should an interpreter not be present during a class period, conduct class as usual, recognizing the need of the student who is deaf or hard of hearing to have information given visually (i.e. use of blackboard, clear view of speaker’s face, borrowing notes from a classmate, etc.).
- Remember, interpreters are neutral communication facilitators and are unavailable to serve as student tutors, lab partners or classroom participants.
Accessibility Office & Adaptive Technology
The Accessibility Office (MC 2.408, located in Multimedia Services) is available to UTD students, faculty, and staff with disabilities on a first come, first served basis. A UTD NetID is needed to use the equipment.
Accessibility Office hardware includes:
- Dell OptiPlex computer, Microsoft Windows-enabled.
- TOPAZ desktop magnifier.
- SARA and PEARL scanners for converting book text to digital text for reading aloud. Converted books can be saved as TXT (plain or rich text), MS Word, or audio files.
- Braille keyboard.
Adaptive Software includes:
- Open Book – via the PEARL scanner, converts book scans to digital text or audio files and reads text aloud.
- MAGIC – screen magnification software.
- JAWS – reads aloud and assists with navigating the computer environment (desktop, applications, and web pages).
- Dragon Naturally Speaking – allows the use of voice commands via microphone headset to navigate the computer environment and use applications.
Accessibility Office Room Use Rules
Appointment times for the office are scheduled for 2-hour blocks. If no one is waiting to use the office, the user may continue working. If a user does not show up within 15 minutes of the appointment time, the office will be made available to the next person.
To book time with the Accessibility Office Equipment, call Research Services at 972-883-2643 (alternate number – Services Desk – 972-883-2953).
The Accessibility Office is intended for studying and research purposes. Because it is located in Multimedia Services, the space is not for group meetings. It contains one desk for the computer and accessibility equipment, with room to study. The office is available during Multimedia Services operating hours.
For first-time use of the Accessibility Office, we ask that users schedule an appointment for a brief orientation (approximately 15 minutes) with one of the Accessibility Librarians listed at the bottom of the page.
Photocopy and Printing Services
Services Desk staff are available to assist with the copying and printing of materials in the Copy Center. Copies and prints can be paid using your Comet Card ($.06/side, B&W; $.25/side, color). Cash may be added to your Comet Card using the Add Value machine near the copiers. Credit or debit card may be used to add funds to your Comet Card online.
Document Scanning and Delivery
If you need assistance converting physical materials to OCR (Optical Character Recognition) PDFs or another format, the Interlibrary Loan Department can assist you with electronic delivery of book chapters and journal articles.
Submit an article or chapter request online at https://utdallas-illiad-oclc-org.libproxy.utdallas.edu/illiad/illiad.dll?Action=10&Form=22
Retrieval of Materials
Services Desk staff will retrieve physical materials (books, multimedia) upon request. If staffing permits, retrieval will be done immediately. Otherwise, we will strive to make items available within 24 hours.
Request for Accommodation
Any UTD student, staff, or faculty member who requires special accommodations beyond the services listed above should contact the Dean of Libraries, Dr. Ellen Safley ([email protected]), 972-883-2960.
Questions? Comments? Concerns?
For more information or to book an orientation to the Accessibility Office, contact one of the following Accessibility Librarians: