Disability Policy – Students

Reference Code: SPL0012 Classification: Student Services
Approved Date
22 Oct 2019
Date Effective
22 Oct 2019
Review Date
17 October 2020
Approved By
Academic Board

Definitions

 In interpreting this Policy, the terms outlined below apply.

Word/Term

Definition/Explanation 

Academic consideration

A process intended to help minimise the impact of serious or extenuating circumstances beyond a student’s control that significantly impair a student’s ability to complete an assessment task on or by the due date as stipulated in the Learning Guide or to progress academically in a subject relevant to their course of study. Academic consideration may be granted on the basis of compassionate or compelling circumstances and/or extenuating circumstances.

Adjustment

A measure or action (or a group of measures or actions) taken by Nan Tien Institute (NTI) that has the effect of assisting a student with a disability on the same basis as a student without a disability, and includes an aid, a facility, or a service that the student requires because of his or her disability.

Appropriate medical documentation

Medical documentation issued by health professionals registered through the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).

Assessment

Measure or evaluation of a student’s ability to meet the learning requirements of a course. This includes both the content and design of assessment tasks.

Associate

An NTI student who provides support to a person with a disability who may or may not be a student at the NTI. An associate may include but is not limited to

(a) A spouse of the person;

(b) Another person who is living with the person on a genuine domestic basis;

(c) A relative of the person;

(d) A carer of the person, and

(e) Other groups listed within the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Clth).

Disability

Disability, in relation to a person, includes:

(a) Total or partial loss of a person’s bodily or mental functions;

(b) Total or partial loss of a part of the body

(c) The presence of a body of organisms causing disease or illness;

(d) The presence of a body of organisms capable of causing disease or illness;

(e) The malfunction, malformation, or disfigurement of a part of a person’s body;

(f) A disorder or malfunction that results in the person learning differently from a person without the disorder or malfunction;

(g) A disorder or illness that affects a person’s thought processes, perception of reality, emotions; or judgement or that results in disturbed behaviour, and

(h) Disability is one which:

  • Presently exists;
  • Previously existed but no longer exists;
  • May exist in the future, or 
  • Is imputed to a person.

Discrimination 

When someone is treated unfairly because they belong to a particular group of people or have a particular characteristic. For example, treating someone unfairly or differently because of: sex, pregnancy, race (including colour, ethnicity, and descent), disability, sexual preference, religion, transgender, carer’s responsibilities, marital status, social origin, political belief, employee association activity, an irrelevant criminal record or age.

Harassment 

An action taken in relation to a person’s disability that is reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to humiliate, offend, intimidate or distress the person or the associate.

Indirect discrimination 

Occurs when there is a requirement or rule that is the same for everyone but in effect disadvantages people from a particular group more than people from other groups - unless the requirement is reasonable in the circumstances.

On the same basis

A student with a disability has opportunities and choices in courses or programs and the use of facilities and services comparable to other students without disabilities.

Prospective Student 

A person who approaches the institution about seeking admission to, or applying for enrolment in, the institution.

Reasonable Adjustment 

An adjustment is reasonable in relation to a student or an associate with a disability if it balances the interests of all parties affected and does not impose unjustifiable hardship.

Staff 

All people employed by NTI including conjoint appointments, whether on continuing, permanent, fixed-term, casual or cadet or traineeship basis.

Student 

A person registered for a course at NTI.

Support Service 

An action or program provided at NTI that assists a student’s ability to participate in NTI’s environment.

Unjustifiable Hardship

In determining what constitutes unjustifiable hardship, all relevant circumstances of the particular case are to be taken into account including:

(a) The nature of the benefit or detriment likely to accrue or be suffered by any persons concerned;

(b) The effect of the disability of a person concerned; 

(c) The financial circumstances and the estimated amount of expenditure required to be made by the person claiming unjustifiable hardship; and 

(d) In the case of the provision of services, or the making available of facilities, an action plan given to the Australian Human Rights Commission.

Scope

This policy supports the provision of a physical, learning and social environment that complements and enhances the experiences of students with a disability on the same basis as other students at the NTI in an environment free from harassment and discrimination.

This policy outlines the rights and responsibilities of students in relation to students who have a disability, either temporary or permanent, as well as students who have an associate with a disability.

This Policy applies to all enrolled and prospective students under the following programs:

(a) Undergraduate programs;

(b) Graduate programs;

(c) Cross-institutional programs; and

(d) Non-award programs.

Policy Statement

1. Nan Tien Institute is committed to:

1.1 Providing an experience that gives students with a disability the opportunity to fully participate at Nan Tien Institute (NTI) and to realise their individual potential; 

1.2 Balancing the interests of all parties affected by reasonable adjustment;

1.3 Maintaining the academic standards of its courses and programs;

1.4 Providing a supportive educational environment and an appropriate level of resources that will enable all students to achieve their course learning outcomes;

1.5 Continuous improvement that will ensure all buildings and facilities are accessible to people with disabilities. This shall be achieved through the ongoing review and upgrade of existing buildings and construction of new buildings and facilities to comply with the Building Code of Australia (BCA) and the relevant sections of the Australian Standard AS 1428-2001 Design for Access and Mobility; and

1.6 Providing an environment free from harassment and discrimination.

Systems and Procedures

4 Roles & Responsibilities

4.1 NTI has a responsibility to:

4.1.1. Ensure that this Policy is accessible to all students; and

4.1.2 Ensure that this Policy is implemented and applied consistently across NTI.

4.2 Student Services Office has a responsibility to:

4.2.1 Ensure that current, relevant and appropriate medical or specialised documentation is provided by the student;

4.2.2 Obtain further medical or specialised documentation/advice in order to ensure suitable reasonable adjustments;

4.2.3 Monitor the NTI experience for students registered with a disability;

4.3 Student Support Services have a responsibility to:

4.3.1 Provide consultation and assessment services to students with a disability in order to recommend reasonable adjustments;

4.3.2 Provide teaching and relevant support staff with advice and, where necessary, to consult on:

(a) an individual student’s recommended reasonable adjustments,

(b) how various disabilities affect study,

(c) inclusive teaching and learning strategies, and

(d) accessibility.

4.3.3 Provide information, advice and support on matters related to disability to the NTI community as required; and

4.3.4 Resolve issues or conflicts related to a disability between a student with a disability and a staff member of NTI.

4.4  Academic staff have a responsibility to:

4.4.1 Ensure that this Policy is applied consistently so that all students are treated fairly and equitably as far as practicable;

4.4.2 Participate in the consultative process with Student Support Services to determine reasonable adjustments as required; and

4.4.3 Implement recommended reasonable adjustments consistent with NTI’s responsibility to apply the Disability Standards for Education 2005.

4.5 The Student Services and Academic Support Manager have a responsibility to:

4.5.1 Act as a link between students and relevant academic staff to ensure students are supported through their study;

4.5.2 Facilitate reasonable adjustment provisions at NTI for each student registered with the Student Services Office, and 

4.5.3 Work with Student Support Services and NTI Management to develop and review Disability Policy in line with current legislation.

4.6 The student with a disability has a responsibility to:

4.6.1. Register with Student Services Office in a timely manner;

4.6.2 Provide current, relevant and appropriate medical or specialised documentation;

4.6.3 Advise Student Services Office:

(a) of their subject enrolment at the beginning of each academic session;

(b) when they alter their subject enrolment;

(c) when they take leave of absence from their studies;

(d) when they discontinue their studies;

(e) participate in consultations and reviews as required, and 

(f) inform Student Services Office when their circumstances or condition changes.

4.7 The student who is an associate of a person with a disability has a responsibility to:

4.7.1 Register with Student Services Office or apply for academic consideration in a timely manner;

4.7.2 Provide current, relevant and appropriate medical or specialised documentation;

4.7.3 Participate in consultations and reviews as required; and

4.7.4 Inform Student Services Office when their circumstances or the condition of the person with the disability changes.

5. Grievance

5.1 Students who have a question or concern about a decision, act or omission that affects their academic experience should refer to the Student Grievance Policy for information on how to lodge a formal grievance. However, students who have a complaint on the basis of disability should contact Student Services Office in the first instance and then the Dean.

5.2 Student cases or complaints of harassment or victimisation on the basis of disability should be referred to the Student Services Office. 

5.3 Students who are dissatisfied with the outcome or conduct of a grievance regarding their disability within NTI may appeal to an external agency.

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Legislation & Regulation

Version Date Approved Date Effective Approved By Amendment
1 18 Oct 2019 18 Oct 2019 Academic Board
2 22 Oct 2019 22 Oct 2019 Academic Board