Student Responsibility

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The disability compliance coordinator for students is the designated contact person for students with disabilities at Cedarville University. Services for students with disabilities focus on providing individualized accommodations while promoting student responsibility, independence, and self-advocacy. Disability services views the provision of reasonable and appropriate accommodations, auxiliary aids, and services for students as a collaborative effort involving faculty, staff, and students.

Policies and Procedures

Students with disabilities seeking accommodations must follow established policies and procedures. They must:

  1. Meet qualifications for admission
  2. Self-disclose to disability services
  3. Register with disability services
  4. Request accommodations in a timely manner
  5. Provide documentation verifying disability and supporting the request for accommodations
  6. Engage in an interactive process with disability services to determine reasonable and appropriate accommodations
  7. Encourage communication with faculty to discuss accommodations
  8. Notify disability services regarding any problems with accommodations or needed changes
  9. Follow guidelines and procedural requirements for using approved accommodations

Admission to Cedarville University

The application process for admission to Cedarville University is the same for all students including students with disabilities. Universities and colleges cannot make pre-admission inquiries regarding disability. Disclosure is optional and voluntary. However, a student may disclose a disability if he or she feels that previous academic performance was adversely affected due to circumstances pertaining to a disability. If a student chooses to disclose, he or she should provide the information on a separate sheet of paper and include it with the admissions application.

Registering with Disability Services

It is important to understand that disclosure of a disability during the admission process does not register a student with disability services or entitle him or her to accommodations. Registering with disability services and establishing eligibility for accommodations and services is a separate process that is done independently of the admissions office. Students desiring accommodations and services must self-disclose to disability services and establish eligibility by providing documentation of disability. Documentation should be sent directly to the Disability Compliance Coordinator.

Self-Disclosure

In the postsecondary setting, it is the responsibility of students to take ownership of their education by fully participating in the accommodation process. New students who wish to be considered for reasonable accommodations at Cedarville University must self-disclose and register with disability services once they have been accepted and have committed to attending the University.

Self-disclosure in a timely and reasonable manner is important for several reasons:

  1. The process requires time to acquire the necessary information to establish eligibility.
  2. Certain types of accommodations such as housing, e-text, and scheduling require advance notice to arrange.
  3. Accommodations are not retroactive.

Students who choose not to self-disclose when they enter Cedarville University do not forfeit their right to identify themselves and to receive accommodations at a later date. However, Cedarville University is not obligated to provide accommodations or services to those students with disabilities who do not disclose. Registering with disability services and establishing eligibility does not obligate a student to use approved accommodations.

Faculty Reliance on Disability Services for Verification of Disability

A disclosure of disability or request for an accommodation made by a student to a faculty or staff member will not be treated as a request for an accommodation. Faculty rely on disability services to verify eligibility and the need for accommodations. Students must self-disclose to the disability compliance coordinator and follow established procedures and guidelines to establish eligibility.

Establish Eligibility

A disability, as defined by federal law, is a physical or mental impairment that "substantially limits" one or more major life activity such as walking, hearing, seeing, speaking, or learning. A student must self-disclose and provide current documentation of the disability to disability services.

The purpose of documentation is to:

  1. Establish eligibility as an individual with a disability
  2. Establish a rationale for reasonable and appropriate accommodations

Right to Privacy and Release of Information

The coordinator of disability services for students respects the right to privacy of individuals with disabilities and the confidential nature of information conveyed verbally or in writing. Disability services is committed to ensuring that all documentation including medical, educational, and psychological information regarding a student's disability is maintained as private. Information will not be released except in accordance with state and/or federal law.

Information acquired is used solely for establishing eligibility to provide reasonable and appropriate accommodations at the University. Students who request disability services to facilitate accommodations on their behalf need only to share disability-related information. This information is shared only with others within the University on a need-to-know basis for the purpose of meeting students' disability-related needs per request.

Note: Cedarville University does not provide diagnostic services to students who suspect they may have a disability. Upon request, disability services will provide names of professionals in the general area.

Self-Advocacy

Students who understand their disabilities are better equipped to self-advocate, taking an active role in developing their own strategies for reasonable accommodations. Should any concern arise during the term regarding the provision of an accommodation and/or its effectiveness, it is the student's responsibility to immediately contact the faculty member and disability services.

Procedure for Requesting Accommodations

New and current students requesting accommodations for the first time at Cedarville University must follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Self-Disclose
    Students must self-disclose to the coordinator of disability services in a timely and reasonable manner. The amount of time considered appropriate depends on the nature of accommodations being sought. Certain accommodations may require significant lead time to arrange and provide. Examples include but are not limited to alternate text format, special services for vision and hearing impairments, and housing. In such instances, without advance communication and the provision of appropriate documentation to both verify eligibility and support the request for accommodations, it may be difficult if not impossible to provide the requested accommodations in a timely manner.
  2. Register
    Students must register with disability services by completing an Application for Services and other appropriate forms.
  3. Submit Documentation
    Students must provide documentation from a qualified professional that supports the request for accommodations and services. Submitting the documentation in a timely and reasonable manner is important. This will allow disability services sufficient time to determine if it is appropriate and complete and to verify eligibility for accommodations. If additional information or clarification is needed, the student will be contacted.

    Transfer Students
    Providing written verification from a previously attended college or university about accommodations used and dates provided is useful information. However, provision of this information does not obligate Cedarville University to provide the same services.
  4. Schedule Intake Interview
    Students must schedule an intake interview with the coordinator of disability services. The coordinator and student will meet to discuss the functional impact of his or her disability in the academic environment. This interactive process will provide important information in determining reasonable and appropriate accommodations, auxiliary aids, and services. The student's self-report regarding the impact the disability has had on learning and other major life activities and the effectiveness of accommodations in the past provides a valuable source of information. While objective information (documentation) is important, so are the previous experiences of the individual. Appropriate and reasonable accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis. Consequently, accommodation recommendations may vary from individual to individual with the "same" disability diagnosis and from environment to environment for the same individual.

    In preparation for this intake interview, students are encouraged to consider how the disability has impacted them in the past. Students should also consider how it is likely to impact them in the typical activities they expect to encounter at Cedarville University.

    If a meeting with the coordinator is not possible prior to arrival at the University, the intake interview can be arranged through other means of communication. However, upon arrival at Cedarville, it is important for the student to schedule a personal appointment with the coordinator.
  5. Approve the Student Accommodation Notification
    Once accommodations are determined, upon the student's request, disability services will provide a Student Accommodation Notification to the student, the student's advisor, and the faculty members designated by the student. This notification informs the recipient that the student is registered with disability services and is eligible to receive the approved academic accommodations designated in the communication.
  6. Meet with Professors
    Every student is expected to meet with faculty to discuss their approved accommodations for each course. Students should arrange for a private conversation during faculty member's posted office hours rather than approaching the faculty member before or after class.
  7. Report on the Implementation and Effectiveness of Accommodations
    Students are expected to maintain contact with the coordinator of disability services regarding the implementation and effectiveness of accommodations. If accommodation needs are not being met in the classroom, the student should request a meeting with the faculty member without delay. If further assistance is necessary, the student should contact disability services immediately to address the concern.

Current Students Registering With Disability Services

Students who are currently registered with disability services and have been approved to receive accommodations must request academic accommodations for each semester they desire accommodations. Students need to follow the procedures outlined below:

  1. Schedule an Appointment With the Coordinator of Disability Services.
    Students must schedule an appointment to review accommodations from the previous semester and consider appropriate accommodations for the new semester. Accommodations that require additional time to provide will necessitate an earlier appointment in the preceding semester. The amount of time considered appropriate depends on the type of accommodations being sought. Some accommodations may require significant lead time to arrange and provide. Examples include, but are not limited to alternate text format and special services for vision and hearing impairments. In these instances, without sufficient notice from the student, it may be difficult, if not impossible, to provide the requested accommodations in a timely manner.
    If circumstances prevent the student from coming to campus for an appointment with the coordinator, communication can be accomplished by e-mail, phone, or other means.
  2. Complete a Semester Request for Academic Accommodations Form
    Each semester, students requesting accommodations for courses must complete a Semester Request for Academic Accommodations form.
  3. Provide the Student Accommodation Notification to Faculty
    Once a Semester Request for Academic Accommodations form has been submitted and reasonable and appropriate accommodations have been approved by the coordinator, a Student Accommodation Notification will be provided to the student and to the faculty members designated by the student. This notification informs the recipient that the student is registered with disability services and is eligible to receive the approved academic accommodations designated in the communication.
  4. Meet With Professors
    Every student is expected to meet with faculty to discuss their approved accommodations for each course. Students should arrange for a private conversation during faculty member's posted office hours rather than approaching the faculty member before or after class.
  5. Report any Problems
    Students are expected to maintain contact with the coordinator of disability services regarding the implementation and effectiveness of accommodations. If accommodation needs are not being met in the classroom, the student should request a meeting with the faculty member without delay. If further assistance is necessary, the student should contact disability services immediately to address the concern.