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Special Minds Education Consulting


Redmond / WA / US

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Navigating College with Accommodations: A Student's Guide

Entering college as a student with accommodations and special needs demands a proactive approach. Here's your essential guide:

Understanding College Accommodations:
Accommodations, designed to aid your access to the curriculum and learning demonstration, retain a consistent definition from high school to college. However, the range of offerings may vary, and it's crucial to note that colleges do not provide special education services.

In college, you'll exclusively receive accommodations, contingent on actively declaring your disability. Key considerations:

Colleges offer accommodations, and you must communicate your disability.
Proactive steps in securing and utilizing accommodations streamline study time, offering more time for extracurriculars and relaxation.
Taking Ownership:

You are in control:

Ownership shifts entirely to you; parents and teachers no longer manage accommodations.
Parents can't access your records without explicit authorization.
The school is no longer obliged to identify your needs or conduct evaluations.
Identifying Disability & Needs:

The decision to declare your disability in college rests with you.
Your high school does not automatically transfer your documents to college.
Proving Eligibility:

The responsibility to prove your disability and submit current documentation lies with you.
Responsibilities and Legal Framework:

Colleges are mandated to offer accommodations.
Researching and selecting services that suit your needs becomes your responsibility.

Negotiate with the disability services office.
Communicate directly with professors regarding your accommodations.
Take charge of scheduling and understanding how to effectively use your accommodations.
Understanding College's Legal Obligations:

Accommodations are a civil right.
Laws such as Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and ADA continue to apply.
While colleges must offer accommodations, they are not obligated to replicate every accommodation from high school.
Accessible College Accommodations:

Considerations for various aspects, including environment, schedule, interaction, tools, assignments, presentation, testing, and assistive technology, cater to diverse needs.

Being informed about available accommodations and actively seeking support is pivotal for a successful college experience. Remember, your right to access accommodations empowers you on your academic journey.
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