Frequently Asked Questions
Is there any place on the application to identify as a student with a disability?
It is illegal to ask any questions about disability on the application. Admissions is designed to be a "totally blind" process because the law indicates that students must be "otherwise qualified" in order to be admitted to the college.
However, a person may voluntarily elect to identify to the college as a student with a disability. This is recommended if there's an anomaly of some type in their school record (e.g. significant discrepancy between GPA and standardized test scores). If the student elects to identify, documentation should be sent to the Office of Admissions. The admissions office may choose to consult with the Office of Student Disability Services. The director or assistant director will review the documentation and make a recommendation. However, it is important to note that the Office of Admissions makes all final decisions.
What documentation do I need?
- Learning Disabilities and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder-the documentation must include a complete psycho-educational evaluation (no more than three years old at the date of entry to the college) conducted by a qualified psycho-educational diagnostician. It should include the tests given, the test results, specific diagnosis, and recommendations for accommodation. The most common tests administered to diagnose disabilities are: the WAIS-Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale; the Woodcock Johnson or WRAT (Wide Range Achievement Test); the Bender or some other form of perceptual testing. We could also use the student's most recent IEP or 504 Plan (the 504 plans now often include the psycho-educational evaluation and a triennial re-evaluation).
- Physical disabilities-a letter from an attending physician, which includes a diagnosis, impact on academic functioning and related recommendations is required.
- Psychological disabilities-a report done within 6 months that includes a clear statement of the disability, impact on academic functioning and appropriate accommodations is required.
Are math and foreign language waivers available?
No, but occasionally substitutions (e.g. culturally-based courses for foreign language classes) are allowed if the language is not deemed an essential function of the program. Substitutions must be supported by the student's documentation and accommodation history. The student's advisor and dean must also approve them.
What services am I entitled to?
Accommodations are based on the documentation and are designed individually for each student. The student will meet with the director or assistant director who will determine the appropriate accommodations based on the person's disability, documentation and recommendations.
Do you have tutoring services?
Academic Enrichment Services provides free tutoring for students in most subject areas.
Most schools and departments also maintain lists of student tutors for hire, and some classes have Teaching Assistants who can be accessed without charge.
The Writing Center and Math Help Room are available on campus at no cost.
How are professors about accommodating students?
The vast majority of the faculty are excellent. If there are difficulties with a particular professor, the office will advocate on the student's behalf. The bottom line however is that students will be accommodated in compliance with Section 504 and the ADA.
What is the policy regarding confidentiality?
All information regarding students registered with the office and their documentation is kept in a locked file in the SDS office. Information is released with the student's permission (signature) on a need-to-know basis. The information never becomes part of a student's permanent academic record.
What type of housing accommodation is available for students with disabilities?
Housing accommodations are similar to academic accommodations in that they are arranged on a case-by-case basis.
A student must identify to this office and have documentation on file so that the Director or Assistant director can support the request. A Special Housing Accommodation Request form must be completed and submitted to the Office of Student Disability Services, accompanied by documentation from a certified professional stating what the need is and why the particular accommodation requested is the only way to meet the student's need. Our office will contact Res. Life regarding the outcome of the request.
How do students register with the office?
Once a student has been accepted to the College and has submitted their deposit, an orientation packet will be mailed to them, which includes a letter and a Disability Identification Sheet from our office. If the student wants to identify they should return the Disability Identification Sheet and documentation to our office as soon as possible. They must identify and provide documentation in order to receive accommodation for placement exams, housing, etc. Prior to each orientation session, our office reviews documentation provided and contacts students to confirm the need for accommodation for placement exams and to inform the student of the services he/she is entitled to receive. If accommodation is requested, the students receive a confidential letter in their orientation registration packet at check-in, which will tell them where to report for their placement tests.