Library Services

West Chester University

25 West Rosedale Avenue
West Chester, PA 19383
Phone: 610-430-4400
Fax: 610-738-0554

Policy for Serving Persons with Disabilities

Table of Contents


It shall be the West Chester University Library’s policy, where reasonable, to go beyond its normal operations to provide qualified WCU students, faculty and staff with disabilities equal access to information and services and to make every reasonable effort to meet all accommodations. Such services shall be provided in a timely manner. The following policy shall provide the basis for serving qualified WCU students, faculty and staff with disabilities.


The Library shall designate a daytime and evening liaison to handle requests from qualified WCU students, faculty and staff with disabilities which require special attention. In the liaison’s absence, the Circulation Supervisor will determine the level of services needed and call upon a staff person or work study student from any department to give assistance. Service requiring extensive assistance and/or use of special equipment may need to be scheduled in advance.

Library Staff Designated to Help People with Disabilities

Daytime ADA Liason

Evening ADA Liason

  • The Evening ADA Liaison is the Evening Circulation Supervisor.
  • Work hours: Sunday to Thursday, 6:00 PM – 12 Midnight.
  • Phone 610–436–2946.
  • Between 4:00 PM and 6:00 PM speak with the other staff at the Circulation Desk to arrange service.
  • Ask at the Circulation Desk, 2nd floor, just inside the main entrance.

Part’Time ADA Assistant

  • Work hours: vary each semester depending on users’ needs.
  • This employee will make appointments, train and assist qualified WCU students, faculty and staff with disabilities in the use of adaptive computing equipment located in the Library, including Reading Edge, closed-captioned TV, Computer with adaptable software, Braille printer and any other related equipment. This employee will also provide the following accommodations: reader services, photocopying, retrieving material from other areas of the Library; searching for information on CD-ROM Indexes, PILOT (the Library’s catalog), or the Internet; and providing material in alternate formats.

Music Library

The Library Technician and/or the work study students assigned to this area will be responsible for helping any qualified WCU student, faculty or staff with disabilities who requests assistance at the Music Library desk.


  • When requested, the liaison on duty (or in their absence, any other Library employee) will escort the qualified WCU student, faculty or staff with a disability to the desired location.
  • The Library public telephones are equipped to help those with hearing and speech impairments. The public telephone on the 1st floor in the IMC dept. has a TDD device. The public telephone on the 3rd floor has a volume control.


  • Service animals shall be permitted in the library.
  • Staff shall go beyond the normal level of service to make the library accessible to qualified WCU students, faculty and staff with disabilities. This includes, but is not limited to: reading brief documents; paging materials, using CD-ROMs, PILOT, and the Internet; and providing lengthy documents in an alternative format (e.g., tape, disc, large print) via the computer and other equipment in the Adaptive Services Room. Also, the service will include retrieving books from the stacks, journals from the Serials Department, or any other formatted material the library may own.
  • Photocopying of printed material and microfilm/fiche is at the user's expense.
  • Elevators have been upgraded to serve the visually impaired. Braille numbers appear next to the buttons to push for floor selection, as well as Braille numbers outside the elevator designating which floor you are on. The double door elevator has a bell tone that sounds from inside when passing the floors and when the door is in the "open" and "close" position.
  • Special equipment for the visually impaired:
    • Closed Circuit TVs (Room 253, Adaptive Services Room)
    • Kurzweil Reading Edge Machines (Room 253) scans printed text and then speaks it aloud. The spoken text may be automatically recorded to cassette tape. On appointment, the Library's ADA Liaison will teach qualified WCU students, faculty, and staff how to use the machine.
    • Computer with Braille printer (Room 253) will provide qualified students with disabilities access to their Email accounts as well as serve other computer related needs. This computer also has JAWS software which gives qualified WCU students with vision impairments computer access.
    • Closed-captioned monitor (IMC)
    • Microfiche reader-printer (Serials) offering 50X magnification.
    • Other equipment available from the Reference Desk include a magnifying lens, available upon request with some form of user ID.
    • All public access computers have Magnifier to enlarge text. The icon for Magnifier appears on the Windows desktop.


  • The library’s catalog, PILOT, is on the Web. Two Internet/Catalog and one CD–ROM public workstations are wheelchair accessible.
  • If access is restricted in any department or classroom, staff will make arrangements to use an accessible location when holding programs that are open to the public. Library faculty assigned to teach in any library classroom shall ascertain if there are any students with disabilities, relocate the class to an accessible site upon request, and allow adaptive equipment in the classroom. Staff will announce to the public, prior to any public event, that accommodations will be made upon request for a person with a disability.
  • The library provides access through the automated front doors to individuals with mobility impairments. An automated door also accesses the handicapped parking lot at the back of the library. A card must be used to gain back–door access. Qualified WCU students, faculty, and staff must apply for a card in the Library Administrative Secretary’s office (Room 236). This door is for entry to the library only. If necessary, special arrangements can be made with the Circulation Supervisor to exit the library.
  • The second floor men’s and women’s rest rooms are wheelchair accessible.

Other Disabilities

In any situation (except personal hygiene), staff shall make every reasonable effort to accommodate the needs of all qualified WCU students, faculty and staff with disabilities regardless of their ability. A request made by a student, faculty or staff member with a disability shall be treated in the same manner as a request by any library user regardless of the work required to meet that need.

Community Patrons

The library of West Chester University primarily serves the students, faculty, and staff of the University. The library is open to members of the local community for in–house use of materials, but some services such as interlibrary loan, circulation and ADA services may be limited to the general public.

Electronic Resources

The West Chester University Library is involved in the ongoing process of making all electronic resources accessible. If you encounter problems with the accessiblility of a library electronic resource, please contact the ADA Liaison or the Reference Desk, and the library will work with you to provide the resource within a reasonable period of time.

Other Accomodations

  • Britannica Online (Web-accessible Encyclopedia Britannica)
  • CD-ROMs and PILOT accessible on a Large Screen Monitor in Room 253, Adaptive Service Room.

Affirmative Action/ Equal Opportunity

  • Any individual who believes they were denied equal access may file a complaint with the Director of Library Services (610–436–2747) or the Director of the Office of Social Equity at 13/15 University Avenue, West Chester University (610–436–2433).
  • The Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights, 330 C Street, SW, Washington, DC., 20202 (800–205–8384) is the US government agency designated to take complaints regarding libraries.

Policy Access, Approval and Revision

  • This policy is available in alternative formats from Clayton Garthwait, 610–436–3409,
  • The policy was submitted to the Disabled Student Union for approval in the Fall of 1994.
  • This policy will be reviewed annually and updated as appropriate by the Library ADA Committee.

Policy originally submitted 5/22/95. Revised: 6/19/95, 11/29/95, 12/10/96, 3/13/97, 6/22/99, 9/6/00, 2/11/02.

Send comments and suggestions to Dick Swain,