Interview with a person with disabilities

The interviewee mentioned the nature of his disability as Cerebral Palsy. The condition makes him have several problems in his mobility. He can only move around in his electronic wheelchair and stand supported for short periods without falling. He however falls often when using his crutches. He also has problems with his speech and he usually experiences difficulty talking and getting out his message correctly. This is because of his partial paralysis of one of his vocal cords. If he breathes slower, he has a chance at his speech but he still has problems with other words that he prefers to type into his computer in order to communicate them effectively. He started typing the words after he noticed that people had difficulty in understanding him.

The problems with his mobility and his speech hinder him greatly from attending face-to-face classes since he has a hard time communicating in class. The interviewee has a problem with his writing since he cannot write very well using his hand due to his Cerebral Palsy. The illness weakens his hand muscles but he can be able to type well and at quite a reasonable speed. He also has cognitive problems like decreased rate of intelligence and learning ability, which makes him slow in comprehending ideas. He is also rather slow in responding when he is being questioned directly which could possible also be because of shyness. He however could respond rather well if one communicates with him via electronic chat resources (University of Washington, 2004).

If proper accommodations could be made, he would be able to take a successful online course. This is because, his communication using electronic sources is good and he responds well if communicated to using electronic sources. He needs accommodations like more time to finish his work than the ordinary students do. He also would require a more flexible schedule than the other students to enable him access the frequent medical treatment that he requires. Due to his inability to speak well, he shall require other alternatives in doing his presentations like speaking aids or translators where speaking is involved. He requires an online class since he would need more guidance when tackling a more structured learning environment (Lawton, 2007).

Since his hand muscles would not handle a pen well, he would also need specialized equipment to perform tasks as drawing and these are offered in plenty via online or computer software. He would on the contrary like to be enrolled on a face-to-face program and would prefer it to an online course. However to be able to enroll in such a program he shall require major emotional and physical support in order to enable him gain the ability to express himself in a physical environment. This shall involve helping him get better in his skills of speaking and interacting with others and help him build his self-esteem greatly (Riddell, Tinklin & Wilson, 2006).

Though a disability has the ability to affect or not affect the participation of a student in class, the students themselves are the best source of the information as to which are their special needs. The student is the best person to disclose any information they might find relevant regarding their disability and request for the most relevant accommodations that shall suit their well being and performance academically. Schools should include in their class syllabuses a statement that encourages students requiring special accommodations to report to their teachers since this creates a welcoming environment for students with special needs. These students require a flexible environment when communicating with their instructors and this in turn promotes the acquisition of accommodations. Students with similar disabilities may require having different accommodations and it is quite important for institutions to have knowledge of the strategies used to work with such students.


Lawton, S. (2007). Just Ask: Integrating Accessibility throughout Design. Retrieved from

Riddell, S., Tinklin, T., & Wilson, A. (2006). Disabled students in higher education: perspectives on widening access and changing policy. New York, NY: Routledge.

University of Washington. (2004). Accommodations and Universal Design: Disability Type. Retrieved from


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