Eastern Michigan University

Mobility Impairments

A mobility impairment is a broad category that includes any condition that makes it difficult for the student to move about and use their upper and/or lower limbs.

Some causes of Mobility impairment include:

  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Spina Bifida
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Surgery or other injuries
  • Amputation
  • Car accident
Students with Mobility Impairments may exhibit or experience the following:
  • Either a temporary or permanent impairment in mobility
  • Use of a cane, wheelchair, crutches, walker, scooter, etc.
Impact of the Environment on the Disability

Students with Mobility Impairments will likely perform best in courses that incorporate the following elements, which may also benefit other students:

  • Accessible furniture in the classroom: desks that allow someone in a wheelchair to use them comfortably, chairs that are comfortable to sit in for extended periods of time, etc. The student or instructor may contact the Disability Resource Center (DRC) who will contact the Physical Plant for assistance in securing the proper furniture.
  • A classroom that is accessible to the student; students, faculty, and staff can contact the DRC directly or enter the issue through the Report Accessibility Concerns Form if a room is not accessible. With that information, the DRC can work together with the university to create a more accessible environment overall.
  • Ability for students to use various means of capturing notes (i.e., laptop or audio record) because handwriting is not always the most efficient way
  • Classroom and testing environment that recognizes that students take varying amounts of time to complete work
  • Notes provided in advance of class

When the environment and the disability are not compatible, students with Mobility Impairments commonly receive any or all of the following accommodations:

  • Extended time for testing if writing answers requires additional time
  • Note-taker and/or permission to record lectures
  • Test scribe and/or use of speech-to-text software for those students who have difficulty writing answers
  • Ability to use laptop to take lecture notes and/or use on exams
  • Instructor's consideration of flexibility with attendance policy and ability to make up assignments (i.e., if student has difficulty making it to class due to inclement weather). Contact the DRC for guidelines regarding this accommodation.
  • Use of service animal
Sources and Additional Information
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