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Disabilities Services

Faculty Resources


General techniques that Neumann instructors use to work with students
with learning disabilities

  • Help set realistic goals.

  • Set short term goals so the student can experience immediate successes.

  • Talk with students about what techniques work best for them.


Introducing instruction: Before students can begin assignments, they have to understand the instructions. Our instructors use the following techniques to introduce lessons effectively.

  • Make announcements in both oral and written forms, especially changes in the schedule, directions, assignments, or exams.

  • Have models or samples of assignments available for review.

  • Show by example.

  • Make directions specific, concrete, and understandable.

  • Introduce the purpose of the lesson and explain what will be done first, second,
    and so on.

  • Review major points of previous sessions. Preview main points to be covered.
    Outline both in several ways: written on the board, presented orally, and outlined
    in a handout.

  • Make clear transitions from one task to another.


Effective teaching techniques: Our instructors use the following methods to promote effective learning

  • Make eye contact frequently; this helps in maintaining attention and encouraging participation.

  • Relate new concepts to practical applications.

  • Build on what the student already knows, making learning developmental,
    not remedial.

  • Probe "incorrect" responses to discover thought processes.

  • Teach students to correct their own mistakes.

  • Do not assume that the student knows something until you ask or teach it.

  • Establish a routine; this promotes organization and consistency.

  • Use multi sensory strategies to present materials: many students must see,
    say, hear, and touch before they can develop full mental images that stick and
    make sense.

  • Provide short term tasks with short breaks between tasks; work quotas should be adjusted to fit the work speed of each student.

  • Vary your lessons, re teaching and reviewing in varieties of ways.

  • Respect different learning styles.

  • Use formulas or mnemonics to assist the memory.

  • Provide the student opportunities to repeat verbally what has been taught as a
    check for accuracy.

  • Share your experiences and problems with other teachers to get new ideas.


Fostering self esteem: The better students feel about their learning experience, the harder they try. Our instructors foster a positive environment to build self esteem in students and encourage them to persevere.


  • Do not embarrass, insinuate laziness or incompetence, or discourage an individual publicly or privately.

  • Communicate to students that you value them through smiling, listening,
    and eye contact.

  • Incorporate a sense of humor into the learning process.

  • Be patient in class discussion; allow students time to think before speaking; don't interrupt or finish their sentences for them.

  • Praise the student's accomplishments, help them identify and use their strengths, and reinforce their effort and progress


Below are some accommodations that our intructors use to address
specific disabilities.


Abstract Reasoning (Inability to relate concepts to examples and to see patterns
in various experiences)

Possible Accommodations

  • list of procedures

  • relate new information to previous information

  • provide examples from common experience

  • provide outline or class notes before class or on blackboard

  • use of a tape recorder

  • use of a note-taker

Auditory processing (In which distractions prevent coherent listening)

Possible Accommodations

  • face students when talking

  • reduce distractions

  • provide models that illustrate ideas and directions

  • encourage students to repeat your questions before answering

  • allow extended, quiet test periods

  • allow computers, dictionary, open book or notes for tests

Dysgraphia (Problems with writing words and symbols)

Possible Accommodations

  • allow computers, dictionary for tests

  • allow papers to be written outside of class

  • allow or provide a proofreader

  • provide an alternative test format

  • provide a scribe for notes and/or tests

Dyslexia (Problems reading and interpreting written words and symbols)

Possible Accommodations

  • do not force the student to read aloud in class

  • use multiple media teaching approaches

  • allow the student to use tapes, books on tape

  • provide copies of lecture notes

  • provide extended test time

  • allow computers, scribes, readers, proofreaders

Retrieval and Sequential Reasoning (Problems with long term memory, organization, planning)

Possible Accommodations

  • provide detailed easy-to-read syllabus

  • advance notice of due dates

  • begin class with review of previous material and an overview of the present lesson

  • end class with a summary and a brief introduction to the next class topic

  • emphasize or enumerate key concepts, procedures, etc.

  • allow students to clarify test questions before starting

  • use a consistent, clear format for papers and assignments

  • breakdown lessons and assignments into shorter segments


Disabilities Services Coordinator: Vince Riley


Office: Ford Academic Resource Center (on the ground floor, beneath the Library in the Bachmann Main Building)


Phone: 610-361-5471





One Neumann Drive Aston, PA 19014-1298 Phone: 610-459-0905 or 800.9.NEUMANN

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