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Students With Learning

It is your choice to share any disability with colleges.

First, it is your choice to reveal the fact that you have a learning disability. If you are under 18, your parent will need to give consent to your counselor at school to share this information with colleges and in order to release any of his records that indicate that he has a learning disability. I think we have agreed that you benefit from any extra help and that you and your parents feel that you will continue to need accommodations in college.

It is your responsibility to contact the college and discuss accommodations offered at said college.

Throughout public school, IEP team meetings were held every year to review services and your progress. You were contacted by your counselor or special needs teacher to set up these meetings.

Keep in mind:

  1. Colleges will make academic adjustments, but they will not modify homework or the coursework.

  2. You may have the option to take fewer classes per semester and still maintain full time student status.

  3. Colleges do not provide tutors, but most have tutoring centers available.

  4. Many schools have student tutors available.

  5. Tutoring will not be scheduled into coursework like it is scheduled in high school.

  6. If there is a specific learning center, one will need to initiate setting up and act responsible in attending any tutoring sessions that he scheduled. Will, if you need to make any changes in your tutoring time when necessary (Mom won’t be around to schedule/reschedule for you).

You will need to provide documentation of a disability:

  1. It is important that you inform a counselor or director of disabilities of your needs ahead of time. In order to provide any accommodations, you will need to show a psychoeducational evaluation or neuropsychological evaluation. Some schools will also ask to review your IEP or 504 plan.

  2. In order to receive services, your test results will need to show documentation, including the diagnosis, history and impact on your education and learning style.

  3. Each school may have its own list of requirements that you will need in order to document your disability.

  4. Colleges do not provide any testing.

  5. My recommendation is that you have your school district complete a new evaluation sophomore or junior year of high school so that you have the most updated diagnosis and list of recommendations.

Discrimination issues to be aware of:

Once you do have accommodations in place, there may be a professor who may not tolerate providing you with extra test taking time or allow for you to have a note taker. In such cases, it is your responsibility to report it back to disability services and they will help you handle such circumstances. I have gone through the K&W Guide to Colleges for Students with Learning Differences, and we have identified schools with strong learning centers that include professional tutors and learning specialists. Although you have great strategies, you will have the support from professionals that are familiar with your learning disabilities.

​About 11% of the student population is receiving special services on campus. Many students benefit from specific requests like center seating in the classroom, sound systems for hearing impaired students, or even having a recording device during lectures. The difference in college is that you must remember to be assertive and request any accommodations that you will need to be successful in college. Although Mom/Dad was your advocate in high school, you will need to be the one to make sure you are receiving the services that were put in place by you and the counselor or director of the learning services department. If at any point, you feel that the accommodations are not working, then go and talk to them. I am always here for you to answer any questions or provide you with any support while are on your college adventure!


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