Office of Student Support and Career Counseling
In accordance with University of Jordan’s plans to better accommodate students with special needs, a bureau for university students with special needs is being set up. It will cater to the academic, social, and professional needs of students with special needs. This is a pioneer office in the region and will benefit many students. Following are the bureau’s by-laws.
Affirming the rights of students with special needs, and striving to realize the principle of equal educational opportunities and equality among all its students, the University of Jordan is to set up a bureau to be named "Office for Support of Students with Special Needs". The bureau's main task is to provide the academic and personal services that will help the said students attain the maximum degree of growth, adjust to university life, and realize their full potential.
Given the fact that this Office will be unique among other Jordanian and Arab universities, it is to become a model to follow and to contribute in extending the idea to other universities, inducing a considerable change in the field of services for students with special needs.
Rationale for the Creation of the Office
- The increasing numbers of students with special needs who are getting enrolled at the University, and whose personal needs are diverse.
- The low academic achievement of students with special needs and their inability to adjust at the University.
- The inability of present educational programs and student services provided by the University of Jordan to meet the needs of students with special needs.
- The need for educational services and aid which would be difficult to provide without the existence of an organizational and institutional framework, officially adopted and supervised by the University.
- The need to increase the awareness of both faculty members and students of the special needs of target students.
- To enable students with special needs who are enrolled at the University of Jordan to accomplish the highest degree of academic, professional and personal success to the maximum of their abilities and potential.
- To help them to psychologically adjust and to successfully meet the needs of university-life requirements.
- To make faculty members aware of these students' needs and to enable them to cater to such needs and take good care of these students.
- To enable these students to have easy access to the different University buildings and study halls and to diminish all obstacles that obstruct such access.
- To increase interaction with other university students, thus helping students with special needs to integrate into campus life.
- To increase the local community's awareness of the needs of these students and of the problems they encounter, and to ensure that the local community contributes to and cooperates in enabling the students to overcome such problems.
- To conduct field research and studies that are connected to the needs of these students with the aim of enabling them to accomplish their goals and needs and to help them solve their problems in the best ways and means possible.
- To provide training opportunities for university students in specializations that are relevant to the different services offered to students with special needs.
The Services that the Office is Expected to Provide
- To facilitate the mobility of these students on campus, making it easy for them to reach the different study halls and facilities, and to remove the obstacles that prevent easy access, in cooperation with the concerned parties at the University.
- To register the students, ensuring that they are given priority in the registration process.
- To receive these students when they first enroll at the University and to acquaint them with the services that the Office offers as well as the different University facilities.
- To ensure individual tutoring for these students in collaboration with the concerned faculties.
- To document the lectures, references or books needed by students who are visually impaired, through multimedia tools.
- To translate lectures into sign language for students who are deaf.
- To write lectures and examinations for students who are visually impaired and students suffering from physical disabilities or paralysis.
- To provide psychological counseling, both individually and in groups, regarding disability management and the best methods to deal with such handicaps and cope with them.
- To coordinate the admission of these students and to propose the most suitable programs for them to enroll in.
- To hold courses and meetings for university students at large in order to instill awareness concerning the needs of students with special needs and to contribute to the creation of positive attitudes towards them and to ensure collaboration with them.
- To issue publications that would increase awareness among university students and members of the local community regarding the needs of students with special needs and the goals of the Office.
- To provide these students with specific tools and means that they might need, such as hearing aids, walking sticks, and magnifiers.
- To provide tools and technological devices that are necessary to the facilitation of the learning process of this category of students.
- To recommend to all the academic departments at the University the modification and replacement of some of the courses in the curricula which these students are unable to cope with.
- To conduct research and studies pertaining to these students.
- To exchange visits and expertise with similar offices at other universities and institutions.
- To suggest modifications of existing buildings in order to facilitate the students' access.
- To translate speeches during special events into sign language, thus enabling deaf students to attend them and benefit from them.
It is expected that all students who prove to have special needs through medical examinations, and who are enrolled at the University of Jordan through special and officially approved criteria, are to benefit from the services of this bureau; these students include:
· The physically (motor) disabled.
- The visually impaired (blind and low vision).
- The hearing impaired (deaf and hard-of-hearing).
- Those students whose handicaps would directly affect their learning and adjustment in such a way that requires help and support.
- Office director, a specialist in special education (minimum M.A.).
- Counselor (M.A. in Psychological and Educational Counseling).
- Sign language translator.
- Multimedia technician (B.A. in Information Technology).
- Reading / writing assistant.
For the Office to effectively fulfill its objectives, it is prposed that an advisory committee be created, as follows:
- The Vice-President for Humanities and Social Sciences / Chairman.
- Dean of Students' Affairs.
- Dean of the Faculty of Educational Sciences.
- Dean of the Faculty of Information Technology.
- Director of the Office of Community Service.
- Mr. Hamed Zgoul.
- Director of the "Office for the Support of Students with Special Needs".
Equipment, Tools and Material
They will be determined in light of the visits that a team from the Advisory Committee will make to the U.K. and the USA, as soon as the present correspondences with similar offices there have been completed.
Location of the Office
It is Presently located at the Deanship of Students Affairs.