Disability Information Student Handbook

Section Two: Using Disability Services and Accommodations
Academic and Classroom Accommodations & Services

Instructor Liaison

Advocacy and Disclosure

In most cases, students are their own best advocates. Because of this and guidelines on confidentiality, we prefer that DSS students discuss their accommodations and services that DSS has recommended directly with your instructor.

To help you do so, your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist discusses with you those accommodations and support services you will use. If needed, they can help you formulate how to present your limitations and your needs, especially in the context of a particular class’s requirements. In the student success section of this handbook there are additional materials on self-advocacy.

Unless you anticipate requesting accommodations from your instructor, you do not need to disclose your involvement with DSS. If an issue arises later, and you decide to request accommodations, you can consult with your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist for guidance, if needed.

If an instructor questions your status as a student with a disability or has concerns about the accommodations, he/she may call DSS. DSS do not disclose your diagnosis to your instructor, but will confirm that the proper documentation is on file, and that the accommodations are appropriate.  Often an issue is resolved with a simple clarification.

If more mediation or information is required, the student is informed and normally, a dialog is initiated by your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist that involves all parties, with confidentiality safe-guarded and collaboration encouraged.

Notification to Instructors

DSS does not routinely send notifications or accommodation letters to your instructors. If you want this as a service, you must ask for it.  You may hand carry the notification to your instructor or sign off that you wish the program to send it.

Those instructors who will have interpreters or real-time captioners in their classroom, will receive an informational packet before the quarter begins.

Steps to Receive Instructor Notifications:
  1. If you and your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist determine an “Instructor Referral” or an “Accommodation Letter” is appropriate for your situation, you can request that one be prepared.
    • An “Instructor Referral” states that you are a student with a verified disability and that you will be speaking to the instructor about the accommodation needs DSS has recommended.
    • An “Accommodations Letter” states that you are authorized to receive certain accommodations.
  2. Meet with your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist to make the request and sign to release the information.

Progress Checks

Students are encouraged to be aware of their course progress throughout the quarter.   This can be done by monitoring the instructor's feedback on assignments, periodically calculating their grade to date in the course, and talking with instructors. By doing so, you can get help if needed early to improve your success in the course. 

Your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist will assist you to learn a process to evaluate class progress that will be useful throughout your academic career.

When circumstances warrant, and upon your request, your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist, may send out a mid-quarter Progress Checks to obtain instructor feedback. This information can then be shared with you in planning any needed interventions.

Steps to Receive Progress Check Service:
  1. Meet with your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist to discuss  the self-monitoring process.
  2. If requesting a Progress Check, sign a consent.
  3. Meet with your DSS Counselor or LD Specialist to review the instructor's feedback.

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Last Updated: 6/5/17