Disability Support Services FAQ's
Q: If I have a disability, what should I do first if I would like to receive accommodations?
A: Contact the Office of Disability Support Services.
Q: I have a disability, but I don’t want to disclose it because I am afraid of being labeled and stigmatized. What should I do?
A: Visit the Office of Disability Support Services to discuss this matter with the Disability Support Coordinator, who may be able to alleviate your concerns.
Q: I had an IEP in high school. Is that sufficient for me to receive services?
A: It may be. The determination will be made in accordance with the professional judgment of the Disability Support Coordinator looking at the entirety of a student’s history.
Q: What is the difference between an IEP and an accommodation plan?
A: There are important differences. An IEP applies to students with disabilities from preschool to grade 12 only. An IEP offers a much wider range of program options, modifications and intensive services than accommodation plans do. An IEP is designed to remediate the identified areas of disability with goals to measure progress while accommodation plans are only required to provide reasonable accommodations that will give students with disabilities equal access to learning. In an IEP, the curriculum and standards can be modified; however, this is not the case with an accommodation plan in college. Once an accommodation plan is put in place, students with disabilities are held to the same standard as all students. For some students coming from high school, the difference can be shocking.
Q: What are some other differences between high school and college for students with disabilities?
A: The major difference is that students with disabilities are expected to self-advocate for themselves at a much higher level than is sometimes necessary in high school. In college, students must have a good understanding of their disability needs and be able to communicate those needs to others. In addition, students must know where and when to get academic support and tutoring and become familiar with how technology can assist them in becoming successful.
Q: I had a 504 plan in high school, not an IEP. Can I still qualify for services?
Q: How do you determine if I am eligible to receive services?
A: The Disability Support Coordinator considers information gained from one or more of the following sources: a structured interview with each student; observations, reports from faculty, or direct interaction; psychological or learning evaluations, medical reports, and/or previous school records in order to make a determination on eligibility.
Q: How do you decide what accommodations I qualify for?
A: Based on the interview with the student and any documentation provided, both the student and the Disability Support Coordinator will discuss what accommodations will be both reasonable and effective.
Q: What are the possible accommodations?
A: See Accommodations.
Q: What should I do if my evaluations are out of date?
A: While all documentation will be considered along with the entirety of a student’s history, current evaluations and medical reports are the most useful in making the necessary determinations in regard to eligibility and accommodations and may be necessary for certain handicapping conditions. However, relevancy remains the critical dimension in documentation. The DSS coordinator will determine the documentation needs on an individual basis.
Q: What if I have a complaint or a grievance about my accommodations not being met?
A: Contact the Disabilities Support Coordinator.
Q: What if I feel I am being subjected to harassment or a hostile learning environment due to my disability?
A: Salem Community College prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability and age in any of its programs or activities. Any complaints or grievances of alleged discrimination should be filed with the Dean of Student Affairs, Tillis Hall, 460 Hollywood Avenue, Carneys Point, NJ 08069 (856.351.2707).
Q: What if I want to appeal a decision regarding eligibility or an accommodation plan?
A: See Appeal Process.
Q: I don’t have the money to pay for an updated evaluation. What can I do?
A: The college is committed to making sure that any request for documentation, if such documentation is required, is reasonable and limited to the need for the modification, accommodation, or auxiliary service or aid requested. There are a number of available options. See the Disability Support Coordinator for more information.
Q: I am embarrassed to tell my instructor that I have an accommodation plan. What should I do?
A: Accommodation plans are sent to your instructors as a courtesy so that they are prepared when you approach them. Many of the faculty has experience working with students who have accommodation plans and understand this concern.
Q: How long does it take to develop an accommodation plan?
A: Most plans can be developed in 30-60 minutes.
Q: I had an accommodation plan, but did not meet with the Disability Support Coordinator to renew it last semester. Can I get a new plan for this semester?
A: Yes. Contact us to schedule an appointment.