Many students assume that the support they received in high school will automatically transfer to college. This is not the case. Services and accessing those services is significantly different in college than it is in high school.
In college, students are covered under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008, whereas in high school, they were covered under the Individual with Disabilities Act. It is in the best interest of students entering college to know their rights and responsibilities under Section 504 and ADAAA of 2008. Doing so will improve the opportunity to succeed in a postsecondary education. The U.S. Department of Education has a great deal of valuable information available online.
There are a number of disorders that may affect a student's academic performance while in college, such as Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Learning Disorders, Mobility Impairments, Neurological Disorders, Physical & Health Impairments, Psychological Disorders, and Visual Impairments. Depending on the severity and functional limitations caused by the impairment, the student may be eligible for services through the Office for Disability Services (ODS). For an impairment to be considered a disability, the student must demonstrate through documentation that his or her condition meets the definition of a disability under Section 504 and ADAAA of 2008. According to these laws, the definition of a disability is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. ODS requires specific information from both the student and the student's health care provider to determine if the student's condition is considered a disability under these laws and if the student is eligible to receive academic adjustments, auxiliary aids, and/or services.
Students requesting accommodations for a specific disorder through ODS should download the appropriate verification form to obtain information about documentation.