Important Message for Fall 2022

Dear Students, Faculty and Campus Partners,

We hope you enjoyed your summer and are looking forward to your return to campus for the fall semester. The OSAS team is excited to work with you this upcoming year. We wanted to share the information below regarding Remote Attendance accommodations for students with disabilities.

As you may remember, last year, some students with disabilities received a Remote Attendance accommodation during the spring semester. At that time, both the state of COVID-19 in our campus community and the CDC’s guidance on individuals with high-risk conditions looked very different than they do today. Since the pandemic began, OSAS has relied on both the guidance from the CDC and our Keck physician specialists to make individualized decisions about appropriate accommodations for individual students. USC remains committed to following current public health recommendations as it conducts individualized reviews of each student’s accommodation requests.

Fortunately, Los Angeles and USC look very different today than they did last year.. Our campus, including our classrooms, provide a very low risk environment to individuals with disabilities. Individual safety measures, which include handwashing, wearing masks, and receiving recommended vaccines, boosters, and antiviral medication, have made it possible for individuals with and without disabilities to effectively protect themselves. Evidence demonstrates that these various health and safety measures have been highly effective, and it is appropriate for the majority of individuals with high-risk conditions to return to campus. Though OSAS will still conduct individualized reviews based on individual circumstances, most students with disabilities should plan for an in-person return for Fall 2022.

If students with disabilities are approved for a Remote Attendance Accommodation this fall, they may experience difficulty finding a full schedule of courses that can be taken virtually. For Fall 2022, the majority of classes will be fully in-person. During the height of the pandemic, USC fundamentally altered the nature of its academic programs when it moved all classes online and again when many programs incorporated hybrid options into courses. Through these experiences, our schools have learned a great deal about effective teaching in various course modalities. As an in-person institution, one of these lessons is that fully in-person, fully remote, and hybrid classes are typically different from one another in their course design and pedagogical approach.  Because of this, it is frequently not possible to turn an in-person class into a hybrid class without fundamentally altering the nature of the course. USC is committed to an individualized review of courses when it makes this determination; however, for many classes offered this fall, virtual attendance will not be practical.

Students who wish to make accommodation requests for Fall 2022 may do so through the OSAS website for new students or the MyOSAS portal for continuing students, and the office will work with the student, their treating medical professionals, and the University’s own clinical experts to determine what accommodations are necessary for the student to safely participate in their academic program.  Please note that it may take about three weeks to review new requests at the start of the semester.

Finally, we understand that some faculty members may initially offer a student flexibility before OSAS has granted a formal accommodation. A faculty member’s flexibility does not influence OSAS’ determination of whether an accommodation should be approved based on a specific student’s unique needs. The Provost’s office offers additional academic guidance through the USC Faculty FAQ page.

OSAS Virtual Drop-In Schedule Below

Monday: 10am - 12pm and 2pm - 4pm

Tuesday: 10am - 12pm and 2pm - 4pm

Thursday: 10am - 12pm

Zoom Meeting ID: 922 3317 8255

Students New to OSAS

For students who are new to their connection to OSAS, this is a great place to start. Get to know the key steps for beginning your relationship with our office, including how to seek accommodations and services, the University’s documentation guidelines, and some general keys to success.

Current OSAS Students

For students who have established their relationship with OSAS, this section of the website helps deepen your connection, and further your knowledge. It provides guidance on implementing accommodations, the role of your OSAS Specialist, and information on our student organizations.

Faculty

For all faculty and instructors, as well as academic staff, this section is a key resource for OSAS information. You’ll find guidance on Roles, Rights & Responsibilities, guidance from your peers, information on accommodations and services, helpful How To’s, and support resources for your work with students with disabilities. Welcome!

Quote: And if all you did was hold yourself together, we're proud of you

OSAS Spotlight

Mental Health Awareness Month 2021

DSP highlights the month of May by focusing on the healing value of connecting in safe ways, prioritizing our mental health, and acknowledging that it's okay not to be okay. Mental Health Awareness Month started in 1949 by Mental Health America (MHA).

This year's theme is continuing on from 2020, #Tools2Thrive. For additional information and resources, please check out MHA's website: https://mhanational.org/mental-health-month