At UC Berkeley, the vast majority of classrooms are accessible to people with all manners of disabilities. With only a few exceptions our classrooms are wheelchair accessible, and many of the largest lecture halls are equipped with assistive listening devices. Some students require additional furniture accommodations that allow them to fully participate in their courses and, despite the general accessibility of classrooms, some rooms present access barriers to students with other access needs. To support all students in participating in their courses, Classroom Access Services provides accessible furniture options, expertise in selecting courses to assure paths of travel between rooms meet student’s access needs, and information about the campus’ other accessibility features.
Accessible Classroom Furniture
After completing the intake process and establishing DSP services, a DSP specialist may recommend that you make use of furniture accommodations in classrooms. Some potential reasons to make use of accessible furniture include, but are not limited to: wheelchair using students who cannot access standard classroom desks, students with chronic pain, and students who require the use of assistive technology in the classroom. Most commonly, furniture accommodations include the use of one or more of the following options:
|Detached Tables||Fixed-height tables placed in open spaces in the classroom. Usually accompanied by a detached chair.|
|Detached Chairs||A standard chair, with or without arms depending on need, usually accompanied by a fixed or adjustable height table.|
|Adjustable Height Tables||These tables adjust in height through the use of a hand crank which DSP staff can assist in adjusting if needed. These tables are commonly used to allow wheelchair users access to a writing surface in their classes.|
|Standing Lecterns||A desk replacement that allows students to stand while in the classroom.|
Each semester, you must make a request for the furniture that you will need in each classroom where you anticipate your class will be held. If your schedule changes because you drop a class, add a new class, or the class is moved to another location, you must notify us immediately. Also, if for whatever reason the furniture placed by DSP becomes inaccessible to you (due to being moved from its dedicated location, blocked by any obstruction, or used by another student) please notify us. We will take all possible actions to correct the issue in a timely manner.
On rare occasions DSP will, after examining all possible alternatives, move a course from a room deemed inaccessible to another room that better meets a student’s access needs. Before making a room change, DSP staff will make sure that no alternative accommodation or alternate course enrollment adequately addresses academic and accessibility responsibilities. We understand that making room changes can quickly addresses accessibility concerns, and that in some circumstances such measures are needed. That said, we are also sensitive to the needs of other students who have carefully selected courses based on academic need and classroom accessibility. For this reason, we encourage you to contact Access Services as you are planning your courses (during phase 1 and phase 2 of TeleBears!) to make sure that the rooms, paths between classes, and your complete schedule, are as accessible to you as possible. This is also an oportunity to make sure that the distances between classes are accessible to you considering your access means.
In the event that a class is moved to accommodate your access needs, DSP will be the only group on campus with the detailed information about the reasons for moving the class. Your faculty members will only receive notice that the class has been moved and it's new location.
If you are interested in Access Services, need assistance in planning accessible paths between classes, planning paths to and from your residence, or would like to investigate accessible furniture, ask your disability specialist.