CARDS Spring 2021 Information
Spring 2021 CARDS Information for Current Students
Spring 2021 FAQs
In general, CARDS will not proctor exams during the Spring 2021 term. Instead, we have provided detailed guidance to faculty regarding how to provide students with their alternative testing accommodations. Please note, however, that we have limited ability to proctor remotely for students who are approved for a reader and/or scribe as an accommodation, or who have the below extenuating circumstances:
- Student has a scheduling conflict with the exam time due to extended time accommodation length and back-to-back class schedule
- Student missed the exam due to a disability-related reason and there is no other alternative for a make-up offered by the professor or TA
- Student has an accommodation of only one exam per day and has two exams scheduled in one day, necessitating moving one exam, and there is no other alternative for a make-up offered by the professor or TA
- Student has a final exam hardship that necessitates moving an exam and there is no other alternative for a make-up offered by the professor or TA
Please reach out to your CARDS coordinator if you have any questions about your testing accommodations or would like us to discuss this with your instructor.
Virtual Proctoring Request Process (for registered students in approved situations):
- Submit your exam request via AIM at least one week before your test is scheduled to take place.
- CARDS will be in touch with you via email to determine that your situation meets the above requirements. If it is determined that we can accommodate your request, CARDS will do the following:
- Reach out to your professor for a copy of the exam and any specific proctoring instructions.
- Assign a virtual proctor to you.
- We will be in touch with you via email to confirm your exam details within two business days of the exam.
- You will be expected to log on to the Zoom platform no later than 5 minutes before your exam start time to allow for any technical issues.
Yes, CARDS will still be recruiting and hiring notetakers remotely to provide note-taking services to students who are eligible for this accommodation.
Yes, CARDS staff will still be available to consult with students and faculty regarding accommodation plans. Please feel free to schedule a meeting with your coordinator via phone or Google Meet using the calendly links on our website to discuss your specific situation.
Yes, there will be changes to the accommodation request process. While you will still be able to request accommodations for given classes in AIM, you will no longer need to pick up a paper Accommodation Agreement Form (AAF) in our office. Instead, CARDS will be implementing an online AAF process within AIM. Faculty will be able to both review a student’s accommodation plan and indicate their agreement within the instructor portal.
We’re aware that some students had challenges learning online during the Spring 2020 semester. To help faculty prepare for a mixture of in-person and online courses in the Fall term, CARDS has partnered with the Center for Engaged Pedagogy and the Instructional Media and Technology Services department to provide summer workshops and guidance on Universal Design in Learning principles. This guidance is intended to assist faculty as they are designing their course content for the Fall, with the goal of making courses as natively accessible as possible for most students. However, we are aware that many students will still need individualized accommodations in order to address disability-related barriers in their courses, and we are prepared to provide options for additional support through assistive technologies (such as text-to-speech licenses, access to alternative texts and options for increasing PDF readability by screen readers) and direct student support when appropriate. If, however, you have specific concerns about your ability to learn in an online environment, we encourage you to reach out to your CARDS coordinator to discuss options for support.
CARDS Writing and Speaking Fellow Hours
CARDS will be offering remote Writing and Speaking Fellow conferences. We will also have a limited number of attached Fellows for additional individualized support. Students can make appointments on this website once the schedule has been determined.
Available as an approved accommodation for eligible students upon request. Academic Coaching is the one-on-one process of helping a student examine academic concerns and perceived barriers to success. Coaches provide students with semester-long academic support in areas such as time management, procrastination, and test preparation.
CARDS Periodic Coaching Support
For eligible students who aren't able to commit to regular coaching, but would benefit from a monthly check-in with their CARDS coordinator to make sure they are academically on track.
CARDS Peer Mentor Program
Our Peer Mentoring Program is expanding for the upcoming academic year, with a menu of options for getting involved. More information can be found on our CARDS Peer Mentors page.
Peer Assisted Study Sessions (PASS)
Upper class Barnard students registered with CARDS can volunteer to host small group study sessions on Zoom. These study sessions can be created around a given class or around a given topic/task (such as a Senior CARDS student hosting bi-weekly “writing groups” for those students working on their Senior thesis).
Assistive Technology Training Sessions
Come learn how to make the best use out of your Assistive Technology. More details/ dates to come soon!
CARDS Listening Sessions
Have an accommodation or disability-related concern or want to offer us feedback? Sign up for a Listening Session with our director, Holly Tedder, here: https://calendly.com/htedder
Students with approved reduced distraction environment accommodations will have an opportunity to reserve study space on campus for test taking. These students will be given priority in scheduling and the ability to schedule space for up to 6 hours at a time. This process will be managed by Events Management in collaboration with CARDS. If you are eligible for this accommodation, you will receive a dedicated link from your CARDS coordinator for scheduling. All other students may reserve study space through the regular reservation system via Events Management.
Increasing Use of Assistive Technologies
In the age of remote learning, ensuring that the digital educational environment is accessible has become more important than ever. To that end, CARDS has partnered with several key departments on campus to create the Digital Accessibility Working Group. We have hit the ground running to tackle two major accessibility issues: PDFs that can be read by screen readers and text to speech software, and real-time & post-production captioning in the virtual environment. As a group we will be examining these issues and developing solutions over the coming academic year.
CARDS also has access to a variety of assistive technologies to support eligible students. Take a look at just a few of the available options below:
Capti Voice is a text to speech software that can read materials to students, including PDF articles, textbooks, or trade books. Students can import materials into Capti on their laptops or mobile devices and adjust settings such as background color, font size, or text spacing. Students can also set a cursor in Capti to follow along with the text while it is read aloud. This makes large amounts of text more accessible for individuals with disabilities.
Sonocent is an audio note taking app that allows students to record lectures from their laptops. Sonocent will “chunk” audio files so that students can highlight certain parts of the file to indicate important information. Students can store recorded lectures in their library for reference or studying later.
Bookshare is an online library of over 900,000 titles in digital and audio formats. Students can use their Bookshare accounts to have access to audio or ebook versions of their required texts.
SensusAccess is an alternate media platform that allows CARDS staff to automatically convert documents into a range of alternate media including audio books (MP3 and DAISY), e-books (EPUB, EPUB3 and Mobi) and digital Braille for student and faculty use. The service can also be used to convert inaccessible documents such as image-only PDF files, JPG pictures and Microsoft PowerPoint presentations into more accessible and less tricky formats.
Remote Accommodations Guidance
Guidance for Creating Reduced Distraction Exam Environments at Home
Students are used to coming to our office for a more controlled environment to minimize distractions. To create a similar setting, students need to prepare their space before starting an exam online.
Set up your space before taking your exam to minimize distractions. Make the environment feel like a testing environment (in other words, don’t decide to eat your lunch while you are taking your exam or have your television on in the background).
Turn off phones. If you have a landline, set the ringer to silent or low.
Place a “do not disturb” or “testing in progress” sign on your door.
Inform family members (who might also be home) that you will be taking an exam for a specific span of time to minimize interruptions.
You might want to use a lock down browser if you're prone to surfing the internet.
Have all allowed materials available and organized before starting the exam.
At least 15 minutes before the exam, set up your environment to make sure you do not have any computer or internet access issues.
If fidgets or music/sound help you, make sure you have these items available.
General Guidance for Online Exam Preparation
Know the rules and expectations of taking the exam online. Is it open book/ note or are students held to the honor system? Are you being proctored remotely by your professor or a computer program?
Can you start the exam at any time or is the exam only available during a certain time frame?
If your accommodations allow for breaks during exam, is there a way to pause the exam?
Before starting the exam, make sure you know how many questions are on the exam and how much time you have so you can plan accordingly. Since we won’t be there to give a warning, you might want to set a timer to go off 10 minutes before your time is up.
Have a clock or timer nearby so you can track how much time you have.
Have scrap paper so that you can note questions you want to revisit.
Questions may be presented one at a time. It may be more difficult to navigate an exam and go back to review questions. Jot down question numbers and note any questions you may have.
If you have clarification questions for your professor, will you be able to reach the professor? How will you do this? Find out before you take your exam.
You may have finally gotten used to the format of your teacher’s in-class exams and suddenly that format might be different as it shifts to an online platform.
Reach out to your teachers and ask if the exams will be different. The more prepared you are with what to expect, the better.
If you are suddenly allowed to use notes or access your books during an exam, be careful not to use up all of your time and rely too heavily on these materials. It is better to put an answer down that you think is correct and then return to that question later if you have time at the end to double check than to spend time searching for each of the answers.
Guidance for Managing Migraines and Eye Strain during Online Courses
Prolonged computer usage can cause a strain on your eyes. If you are prone to migraines or have other visual issues, you will want to take extra steps to minimize the impact as much as possible by adding some adjustments to your computer monitor and workstation.
Your desk setup can trigger a migraine. Make sure your monitor is placed directly in front of your face to reduce neck strain. Your monitor should be 20 to 40 inches away from your face at eye level.
Adjust the refresh rate of your monitor to its highest rating.
Adjust the display settings of your computer to help reduce eye strain and fatigue.
Brightness: Adjust the brightness of the display so it's approximately the same as the brightness of your surrounding workstation. As a test, look at the white background of this page. If it looks like a light source, it's too bright. If it seems dull and gray, it may be too dark.
Text size and contrast: Adjust the text size (enlarge) and contrast for comfort. Usually, black print on a white background is the best combination for comfort.
Color temperature: This is a technical term used to describe the spectrum of visible light emitted by a color display. Blue light is short-wavelength visible light that is associated with more eye strain than longer wavelength hues, such as orange and red. Reducing the color temperature of your display lowers the amount of blue light emitted by a color display for better long-term viewing comfort.
To reduce your risk of tiring your eyes by constantly focusing on your screen, use the “20-20-20 rule”. Look away from your computer at least every 20 minutes and gaze at a distant object (at least 20 feet away) for at least 20 seconds.
Credit to AHEAD for these guidelines.
(formerly the Electronic Text Service)
DHC, located in 305 Butler Library, is a research and instructional facility of the Columbia University Libraries designed to help Barnard and Columbia faculty and students incorporate computer-based textual and bibliographic information into their research, study, and teaching.
DHC has machine-readable primary source texts, software programs for textual analysis and critical editing, hypermedia and database research tools in the humanities, bibliographic database management programs, IBM and Macintosh microcomputers, and optical scanning equipment for the creation of machine-readable text.
The DHC staff will provide demonstrations, workshops, and classes for students and faculty, as well as individual consultations.
Marsteller Internship Program
Initiated in 1998 with generous support from the Marsteller family, the Marsteller Internship Program supports students with disabilities in self-selected semester-long and summer internships. Named in honor of Julie V. Marsteller, Barnard Class of 1965 and founder of the Office of Disability Services (now the Center for Accessibility Resources and Disability Services), Marsteller Interns are selected on the basis of a competitive application. The program is sponsored by C.A.R.D.S. in conjunction with Beyond Barnard.
Julie Marsteller (1943-1990) was a strong and moving force in the lives of the many students with disabilities with whom she worked during her years in Disability Services from 1978-1990. Serving as Dean for Disabled Students and first Chair of Barnard’s 504/ADA Access Committee, Dean Marsteller was responsible for conducting the College’s first institutional self-evaluation in 1977 mandated by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Recipient of numerous disability-related awards and citations, Julie had a profound understanding of the needs of students with both visible and invisible disabilities and was an active and concerned role model to disabled and nondisabled students alike. The creation of the Marsteller Internship Program is a living testimony to her spirit, dedication and commitment to disability issues at Barnard.
All current students with disabilities who are registered with the Center for Accessibility Resources and Disability Services are eligible to apply for a Marsteller Internship grant. Students who may have a disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but who have not yet registered with C.A.R.D.S. may do so at any time. Disabilities may include mobility, visual or hearing disabilities, as well as invisible disabilities such as learning disabilities/ADD, chronic medical conditions, psychiatric disabilities and substance abuse/recovery. Application deadlines are determined at the beginning of each grant period; generally, in October for fall internships; February for spring internships; and April for summer internships. Applications and applicable deadlines are available at Beyond Barnard in Elliott Hall, 2nd Floor. You may also contact Cindy Meekins or Zena Jones in Career Development directly to inquire about applications at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Specific types of internship awards, including the Marsteller Internship, are kept private within the Beyond Barnard office. Recipients are not identified publicly.