Office of Collegewide Disability Services Student Handbook

As a prospective or current student, you are in the process of making many decisions, ranging from which schools to apply to and what to study, to engaging in the process of registering for courses, completing the degree-planning process and identifying the resources you will need to be successful at Empire State College.

The information provided in this student handbook is designed to assist students with disabilities to make decisions and progress through their studies by identifying and requesting reasonable accommodations that would provide equal access to all college services, studies, programs and activities.

Students attending college after high school often do not realize that their college experience will be different from their high-school experience. As a leader in the field of adult education, our staff is aware that adults often decide to return to college after a variety of life events, including an injury or disability that may have affected their employment or their learning.

The resources offered through the Office of Collegewide Disability Services provide equal access to all college services, studies, programs and activities by ensuring that reasonable accommodations are determined and implemented in an appropriate manner.

As you read through this student handbook, keep the following in mind:

  1. An accommodation is a modification to a program, task or event that allows an individual with a disability to participate fully. Accommodations must be effective to ensure equal access, but may not reduce program standards or present an undue financial or administrative burden to the institution.
  2. Documentation is the report generated by the professional who has evaluated an individual’s disability and provides the official basis of the student’s claim that he or she is a person with a disabling condition. While the law allows the college to request this documentation, at Empire State College proof of a disability is not required for most accommodation requests.

The following accommodations require documentation:

  • Reader's Aid Funds application
  • ADA Part-Time TAP eligibility
  • alternatively formatted text books, i.e., e-text from the publishers or audio books

The articles below will provide you with information about:

Registering with Disability Services and Requesting Accommodations

Why Should I Register? Answers for Adult Students and Recent High School Graduates

Applicable Laws for Students with Disabilities

Students Rights and Responsibilities

Student Action Plan: A Step-by-Step Guide

What if I Suspect I Have a Disability? What to Do and Who to Contact

Temporary Disability: What Do I Qualify For?

Accommodations: An Overview

Accommodations for Online Courses

Requesting Alternatively Formatted Books

ADA Part-Time TAP: Financial Aid for Students with Disabilities

Determining the Functional Limitation of Your Disability

Documentation: What Is It? When Is It Required? Why Should I Consider Asessment or Reassessment?

Recordkeeping and Confidentiality

Grievance and Appeals: How Do I Grieve or Appeal a Disability Action?

All students registered with the Office of Collegewide Disability Services are responsible for knowing the information provided in the Office of Collegewide Disability Services Student Handbook.

If you have any questions related to disability services, you can find additional information on the community resources and frequently asked questions pages or contact your center disability representative or:

Kelly Hermann, director
Andrea Piazza-Victor, disability specialist
Office of Collegewide Disability Services
800-847-3000, ext. 2201
NYS Relay Service 800-421-1220
Disability.Services@esc.edu