Notetaking is an essential support service for students with disabilities. A student with a disability may be provided with notetaking accommodations because they cannot hear the lecture, cannot see notes on the board, overheads, or their own paper, cannot process information fast enough to write down the lecture material and/or will need to visually see the notes in order to process the material, cannot write notes due to a physical disability, etc.
AccessAbility Services will be recruiting for potential Note Takers with the following methods:
AccessAbility Services will post announcements on the Intranet for each course where a volunteer note taker is needed.
The announcement will be made to the students in the course and they will be able to view it on their Intranet homepage under the ‘headlines’ and ‘calendar’ sections. The announcement will have a brief title, “Note Taker Needed for [Course Code and Lecture Section]” and will remain online for a maximum of seven days or until after three potential Note Takers have been recruited for the course.
Please note: the announcements will only be available on the student’s Intranet homepage and will not appear on your course web page.
Along with the announcement posted on the Intranet, we will provide a link to Register Online to become a Volunteer Note Taker.
Prospective Note Takers are to complete the following steps if they are interested in being a note taker for a course:
Instructors assist AccessAbility Services in recruiting a note taker for a student with a disability in their course. Students are advised to deliver a note taking package to the instructor during office hours. The note taking package consists of the following:
For your convenience this package is available to download: Note Taking Instructor Package
In addition you may add our Note Taker Recruitment Poster to you lecture slides or course website.
The following describes the assistance that we are asking you to provide:
At the beginning of the lecture, please read the “Call for Volunteer Note Takers” announcement to the class. We ask that you attempt to recruit three volunteers, and encourage them to sign up online as soon as possible.
Please note: To maintain confidentiality, please do not identify the name of the student who is registered with AccessAbility Services and/or their disability.
Once we have received the sample notes provided to us by the prospective Note Takers for the course, the student requesting notes will choose a note taker from the samples. Once a note taker has been chosen, the volunteer Note Taker will be notified by email.
If no one volunteers:
In Class Announcement by an AccessAbility Services Representative
If after these initial recruitment methods, students registered with AccessAbility Services still require a note taker that meets their needs, we ask for your assistance in allowing one of our Outreach Team Volunteers to make an additional in-class announcement before your lecture begins. The purpose of this additional announcement is to provide students with more information about the benefits and responsibilities of being a note taker as well as the importance of this role.
Where possible, we will notify you in advance that a Outreach Team Volunteer will be coming at the beginning of your next lecture to make a 3 minute announcement. This may not always be possible and we therefore ask for your collaboration in allowing our volunteers to make a short announcement once they have introduced themselves to you before your lecture starts. All Outreach Team Volunteers will wear an ID badge.
A Outreach Team Volunteer may be scheduled to make an announcement in your class for any of the following reasons:
Students who are not selected as a note taker are still encouraged to volunteer in other courses as their notes could be extremely helpful to another student with different disability related needs. The following are examples that outline disability related reasons that students who require this service may consider when selecting their note taker:
In our recent Note Taking survey to U of T at Scarborough students, 86% of respondents indicated that the most effective way to recruit volunteer Note Takers is through in-class announcements from their Professors. Thank you for performing an essential role to assist students with disabilities who are either unable to take notes independently or may need to supplement their own.