Because the support of students with disabilities is a shared endeavor, the DSS when indicated, will collaborate with faculty and staff of other departments to identify resources, examine and clarify academic issues and strategize approaches that deliver optimum student service. This communication will occur on a limited/need-to-know basis.
Official records of disability documentation and accommodation approval are maintained in the Disability Support Services Office. Disability related information is not for inclusion with students' university records.
The university may not make inquiry regarding a prospective student's disability status prior to admission to the institution. However, students may choose, at any time during their association with the university, to disclose a documented disability. It is the student's responsibility to request accommodations and provide required documentation before the term starts. Accommodations are not retroactive. Therefore, it is in a student's best interest to have everything in order before the term begins.
Students with disabilities are entitled to equal access. However, disability status does not, in and of itself, entitle students to accommodation. Individual needs, strengths and limitations, past experiences and the academic program are considered in determining the type and level of services or accommodation. Students are encouraged to be self-directed and are responsible for maintaining communication with the Worldwide Campus Disability Services liaison (WDS) located in the Student Affairs Office and individual faculty.
It is the individual student's responsibility to initiate consideration for protection from discrimination, and request accommodation and/or support services by contacting the WDS. Because some accommodations and services require extensive research and preparation of resources, requests for accommodation should be made in a timely manner---the university cannot guarantee the availability of appropriate accommodations without ample time to make necessary preparations.
Students must provide documentation of their disability in order to receive protection from discrimination under the law. In order to receive accommodation, students with disabilities must provide documentation that, without accommodation, they would not have equal access and, therefore, be subject to discrimination. The documentation must be a comprehensive assessment of the disability written on professional letterhead, and signed by the diagnosing professional. In most cases documentation with the medical diagnoses is only required once to determine eligibility for services.
Modifications of the learning environments are based on the definition, by DSS, of those modifications as appropriate and relevant to the individual student's needs and capabilities. Therefore, documentation must be current or recent enough to determine the impact of the disability on the student's functioning in the higher education environment. Documentation should be sent to the Worldwide Campus Disability Services liaison (WDS) located in the Student Affairs Office:
Phone: 888-292-5727 or 386-226-4911
It is the individual student's responsibility to initiate consideration for accommodation, services, and/or support.