Exploring College and University Options for Students with Disabilities (page 3)
Many parents of students with disabilities seek assurance that their children can do college work. Given a nurturing, supportive environment, abilities can be tapped and students can experience a meaningful education after high school.
A common characteristic of the following individuals is that they all had a disability that impacted them in some way. Their disability did not stop them from continuing their education or pursuing their dreams.
- Olympic runner, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, asthma;
- TV writer, producer and actor, Stephen Cannell, dyslexia;
- Former Vice-President of the United States, Nelson Rockefeller, dyslexia;
- Journalist, Mike Wallace, mood disorder;
- Miss America 1995, Heather Whitestone, hearing impairment;
- Major league pitcher, Jim Abbott, orthopedic impairment;
- Former Assistant Secretary of Education, Judith Heumann, polio survivor;
- Professional baseball player, Jim Eisenreich, Tourette Syndrome; and
- Academy Award winner, Marlee Matlin, hearing impairment.
Adapted College Entrance Exam
Students with disabilities may request accommodations in testing format or equipment to compensate for their disability. Documentation must be current and must address functional limitations or impairments in learning. Some of the adaptations that may be requested in the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) and the American College Testing (ACT) are: extended time, audio cassette edition with regular-type copy, a reader and/or a person to record answers. Tests are administered several times during the school year. The accommodations or adaptations in the testing procedures or environment must be requested well in advance of the anticipated test date. The following testing organizations can provide more information:
American College Testing (ACT) 500 ACT Drive P.O. Box 168 Iowa City, IA 52243-4028 319-337-1332; 319-337-1701 TDD www.act.org
Extended-Time Testing American College Testing (ACT) P.O. Box 4068 Iowa City, IA 52243-4068 319-337-1851; 319-337-1701 TDD www.act.org
Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) Services for Students with Disabilities P.O. Box 6226 Princeton, NJ 08541-6226 609-771-7137; 609-882-4118 TTY www.collegeboard.com
Accommodations For Students With Disabilities Who Attend College
According to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, universities and colleges that accept federal funds must provide reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities. The key factor in determining whether a person is considered as having a disability is whether the physical or mental impairment results in a substantial limitation of one or more major life activities: caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act defines a qualified individual with disabilities, for post-secondary programs, as “...a person with a disability who meets the academic and technical standards requisite for admission to, or participation in, the college’s education program or activity.” With accommodations, many individuals with disabilities are able to meet the challenges of higher education.
Arizona colleges and universities may be contacted regarding accommodations needed by students with disabilities. The school may request documentation of a student’s disability before providing academic adjustments or auxiliary aids. Most of Arizona’s colleges and universities offer services to students who have disabilities which include:
- blindness/low vision
- deafness/hearing impairments
- learning disabilities
- physical disabilities
- psychological disabilities
- chronic medical conditions
- temporary impairments
- traumatic brain injury
Some of the services and accommodations that may be offered on an individual basis for students with disabilities and may vary from campus to campus include:
- academic advisement and planning
- campus adaptive transportation
- assistive technology
- campus orientation
- career and personal counseling
- mobility training
- needs assessment(s)
- registration assistance
- sign-language interpreting
- test-taking accommodations
- volunteer note-taking
- vocational rehabilitation (RSA) liaison
Requested documentation regarding a student’s disability may include the results of psycho-educational tests administered in the last three years, medical reports or other professional evaluations. It is the student’s responsibility to submit the required documentation in a timely manner.
HEATH Resource Center. (2001). College freshmen with disabilities. Washington, DC: Author.
HEATH Resource Center. (2005). Creating options: Financial aid for students with disabilities. Washington, DC: Author.
U.S. Department of Education. The civil rights of students with hidden disabilities under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Washington, DC: Author.
ACT Staff. (2004). The real ACT prep guide: The only official prep guide from the makers of the ACT. NY: Princeton Review.
Getzel, E.E. and Wehman, P.H. (2005). Going to college: Expanding opportunities for people with disabilities. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing.
Pine, P. (2005). Master the New SAT. New York: Macmillan.
American Foundation for the Blind, 11 Penn Plaza, Ste. 300, New York, NY 10001, 212-502-7600 or 800-232-5463, www.afb.org
American Speech - Language - Hearing Association, 10801 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852, 800-638-8255, 301-897-5700 TTY, www.asha.org
Brain Injury Association, 8201 Greensboro Dr., Ste. 611, McLean, VA 22102, 800-444-6443, www.biausa.org
Learning Disabilities Association of America, 4156 Library Rd., Pittsburgh, PA 15234, 412-341-1515, www.ldaamerica.org
National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, Colonial Place Three, 2107 Wilson Blvd., Ste. 300, Arlington, VA 22201, 703-524-7600, 800-950-6264, www.nami.org
Disability Resource Centers for Arizona Colleges
Arizona Western College, Yuma Services for Students with Disabilities, 928-344-7629, www.azwestern.edu
Central Arizona College, Coolidge Special Needs Services, 520-515-5337, www.centralaz.edu
Cochise College, Special Needs Assistance, Douglas, 520-364-7943, www.cochise.edu (Sierra Vista and Fort Huachuca campuses and the centers at Willcox, Benson, and Nogales)
Coconino College, Flagstaff, Student Support Services & Disabilities Resources, 928-226-4323, www.coconino.edu
Diné College, Tsaile, 928-724-6671, www.dinecollege.edu
Eastern Arizona College, Thatcher, 800-678-3808, 928-428-8253, www.eac.edu
Gila Community College, Disabilities Counselor, Globe, 928-425-8481, Payson, 928-469-8039, www.gilaccc.org
Maricopa County Community College, Tempe Disability Resources and Services, 480-732-7050, www.maricopa.edu (Chandler/Gilbert, Estrella Mt., Gateway, Glendale, Mesa, Paradise Valley, Phoenix College, Rio Salado, Scottsdale, South Mountain Community Colleges, and Maricopa and Southwest Skill Centers.)
Mohave Community College, Disability Services, 866-664-2832, www.mohave.edu (Kingman, Lake Havasu City, Bullhead, and North Mohave Center campuses)
Northland Pioneer College, Holbrook Disability Resources and Access Office, 928-532-6178, 928-537-2030, TDD, 800-615-6764, www.npc.edu (Eagar, Heber, Holbrook, Kayenta, Polacca, Snowflake/Taylor, St. Johns, Show Low, Whiteriver, and Winslow)
Pima Community College, Tucson, Disabled Student Resources, 520-206-7286, www.pima.edu (Community, Desert Vista, Downtown, East, West and Northwest campuses, the Northeast Community Learning Center, and the Center for Training and Development)
Yavapai College, Prescott Learning Center, 928-776-2079, www.yc.edu (Camp Verde, Chino Valley, Prescott, Prescott Valley, Sedona, and Verde Valley campuses)
Disability Resource Centers for Arizona Universities
Arizona State University, Tempe Disability Resource Center for Academic Access and Achievement, 480-965-1234, 480-965-9000 TDD, www.asu.edu/drc
Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff Disability Support Services, 928-523-8773, 928-523-6906 TTY, www.nau.edu/dss/
University of Arizona, Tucson Disability Resource Center, 520-621-3268, http://drc.arizona.edu/.
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