Frequently Asked Questions - Students
- How are services for students with disabilities at college different than what is provided in high school?
- Will I receive the same accommodations that I received in high school?
- Are 504 Plans and IEPs (Individualized Education Plans) acceptable documentation at the college level?
- What do I need for documentation?
- I have a disability but no current documentation. What should I do?
- With whom do I share my disability documentation - and when?
- What types of classroom accommodations are considered?
- I think I have a disability but I have never been tested. What should I do?
- Are there special disability advisors or academic coaches at Beloit College?
- Are housing accommodations available?
1. How are services for students with disabilities at college different from services provided in high school?
There are many differences regarding eligibility requirements, policies, procedures and services. Please see How College is Different than High School for an overview.
Students should not assume that accommodations provided in high school/other colleges will be provided at the college level. The standards for granting accommodations are different from high school to college (see above). In addition, accommodations are determined on an individual on basis, cannot compromise essential components, and are limited to providing equal access for the student with the disability. A student's request, documentation, and past experiences are taken into consideration when determining accommodations. Also, some accommodations provided in high school are services available to ALL students at Beloit College (e.g. tutoring) and therefore would not be considered accommodations.
3. Are 504 Plans and IEPs (Individualized Education Plans) acceptable documentation at the college level?
IEP's and 504 Plans can be informative. However, original diagnostic and testing information (when relevant) are typically more helpful, particularly when they are appropriately recent. See the Documentation Guidelines for additional details.
The most helpful documentation is current, completed by a qualified professional, states the diagnosis, explains substantial limitations, and recommends accommodations. (See Documentation Guidelines.) If you are unsure whether or not the documentation that you have is appropriate, send it to the Director of Learning Enrichment and Disability Services who will review it. Be sure to include contact information so that the Director can respond to you after reviewing it.
Notes: 1) Please do not send documentation until you are certain that you will attend Beloit College. 2) Information sent to the Health Center ALSO needs to be sent to this Office for accommodations.
Beloit College does not provide screening for disabilities nor do we provide evaluation updates, so it is best to have a qualified professional evaluate you before you arrive (check with your high school). However, if there is not time or opportunity for you to obtain an evaluation before arrival (or during College breaks), the Director can assist you in obtaining information about relevant Beloit area practitioners. Costs incurred for any evaluations are the student’s responsibility.
With whom and/or when you share that you have a disability is a personal decision. At Beloit College, if you self-identify as having a disability to any employee (except the Health Center and Counseling Center staff) in any format (personal conversation, advisor questionnaire, email), employees are to share that information with the Director of the Learning Enrichment and Disability Services Office. The Director then reaches out to make you aware of the ways in which the College can provide equal access for you.
Documentation is to be delivered directly to the Director and the Director will only share this information with others on a "need to know" basis (unless it is an emergency or the student is a threat to self or others). Students that are on medications for any reason, or have a mental or physical disability, are also strongly encouraged to disclose this information to the Health Center and/or Counseling Center. Prospective students that send documentation to the Admissions Office will likely find that the information has been passed on to the Director of the Learning Enrichment and Disability Services Office.
If you are a prospective student to Beloit College, you are encouraged to arrange a meeting with the Director to discuss your situation. Students with disabilities who are certain that they will be attending Beloit College (or are attending the College) should contact the Director as soon as possible to discuss available services and accommodations.
Please see “Accommodation Possibilities.” In addition, at Beloit College, tutoring services and various academic enrichment activities regarding time-management, organization, and other study skills are available to all students free of charge and therefore are not considered accommodations.
The Director can help students by discussing the situation and sharing study or time-management strategies. Beloit College does not provide screening for disabilities, but the Director can present referrals for the student to get evaluated.
Beloit College does not have special disability advisors or academic coaches. However, the Director or Learning Assistants (LA - trained peer staff) can meet with students upon request. Each student makes his/her own choice of how often they need/will utilize the services and resources provided by the College. However, to obtain accommodations, students must meet with the Director at least once per semester for the first four semesters.
Please see Housing and Food Service Accommodations.
Adapted from the Longwood College website.