The Office of Student Accessibility Services advocates for students with apparent and non-apparent disabilities. Its mission is to promote self-advocacy, campus-wide awareness and accessible education for students with varying disabilities.
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 states that:
“No otherwise qualified individual with disabilities in the United States…shall, solely by reason of his/her disability be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”
Who qualifies as an individual with a disability?
An individual with a disability is a person who has:
- A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities;
- A record of such an impairment; or
- Is regarded as having such an impairment
As defined by the ADA, major life activities are divided into two areas – actions and functions:
- Major life activities include, but are not limited to, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working.
- Major bodily functions include, but are not limited to functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions.
In addition to meeting the above definition, for purpose of receiving services, education or training, qualified individuals with disabilities are persons who meet normal and essential eligibility requirements.
A student reporting a disability must self-disclose to the university, request accommodations and provide required documentation.
Basic Documentation Requirements
To be eligible for accommodations, you must have a documented disability as defined by the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. You must submit required documentation to the Office of Student Accessibility Services.
- All documentation must be on official letterhead, include a complete evaluation and be signed and dated by a licensed medical doctor, psychiatrist or licensed mental health practitioner
- A complete psycho-educational evaluation for all disabilities that affect cognitive functioning
- A description of the current functional impact of the disability of your physical, cognitive and behavioral abilities in the educational setting
- Recommended academic accommodations
A recent Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 Plan may be submitted to supplement - but not replace - acceptable documentation. Vocational Rehabilitation reports may also be considered.
Services and accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis and are made in the spirit of equalizing opportunity rather than lowering standards or waiving requirements. All modifications are based upon documented needs and may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Note taker
- Priority Seating
- Advanced lecture notes (when possible)
- Extended Time
- Dictated Tests/Computer
- Alternate Test Location
- JAWS Screen Reader
- ECHO LiveScribe Pens (based on availability)
- Kurzweil 3000
- Acrobat Screen Reader
Tutoring (upon request)
You have a responsibility to:
- Submit documentation to the university regarding your disability if you wish to receive services
- Report to the office of Student Accessibility Services (SAS) within the first week of classes to apply for accommodations
- Report to SAS each semester you wish to receive services
- Communicate your accommodations/needs to your instructor at the beginning of the semester
You have the right to:
- Attend a college or university if qualifications and admission standards are met
- Equal access to educational opportunities
- Appropriate and reasonable accommodations
- Expectation of confidentiality
- Report any grievance as stated in the Student Handbook under the “Americans with Disabilities Act”
- Participate in co-curricular activities with reasonable accommodations
Hours of Operation
8:30am – 5pm
Valencia Cooper, Assistant Vice President for Assessment and Accessibility Services
Division of Administration and Student Services
1st Floor Parlin Student Center, Room 104C