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:
- Meet qualifications for admission
- Self-disclose to disability services
- Register with disability services
- Request accommodations in a timely manner
- Provide documentation verifying disability and supporting the request for accommodations
- Engage in an interactive process with disability services to determine reasonable and appropriate accommodations
- Encourage communication with faculty to discuss accommodations
- Notify disability services regarding any problems with accommodations or needed changes
- 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.
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:
- The process requires time to acquire the necessary information to establish eligibility.
- Certain types of accommodations such as housing, e-text, and scheduling require advance notice to arrange.
- 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.
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:
- Establish eligibility as an individual with a disability
- 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.
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.