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Students with Disabilities (May 2001)

Under Section 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, St. Bonaventure University is mandated to make reasonable accommodations for otherwise qualified students with disabilities. It is in the spirit of these federal mandates and of the Franciscan tradition that we assist those who, although disabled in some way, are potentially capable of the successful completion of college. Individuals with disabilities might include those with visual or auditory impairments, learning disabilities, ADD/ADHD, orthopedic impairments, seizure disorder, head trauma, psychiatric disorders, diabetes, or other medical conditions. Specific accommodations will be arranged individually with each student depending upon the type and extent of the disability.

St. Bonaventure does not operate a specialized learning disabilities program, but does provide services to students with identified disabilities. It is expected that a student with a disability, with appropriate accommodations, will be able to meet the basic requirements of a liberal arts education. Services a student with a disability might receive include, but are not limited to: alternative testing arrangements, taped textbooks and classes, word processor/spell check, note takers, tutors, peer mentors, time management and study skills training, weekly individual appointments, and other accommodations as appropriate. Alternative testing arrangements might include extended time, oral testing, or use of a computer. It is the responsibility of the professor to provide alternative testing accommodations to eligible students with disabilities who request them; however, if an Exam Proctoring Form is filled out five days prior to the exam, the exam may be proctored in the Teaching and Learning Center during regular business hours. For students who may require specialized services from outside the University (for example, taped textbooks and equipment), three months advance notice is encouraged. Assistance can be offered in procuring such specialized services. Tutoring services, available to all students, are not intended to be a substitute for independent study and preparation. It is the responsibility of the student to adhere to the policies of St. Bonaventure and its Teaching and Learning Center.

Students with identified disabilities are required to complete the same admissions process as other applicants to St. Bonaventure. It is the studentís responsibility to initiate contact with the Coordinator of Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD). Further, the student is expected to provide current documentation (within the last three years) of his or her disability (for example, an audiogram, doctorís reports, psychological evaluation); documentation of a learning disability should include test results from the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III (WAIS-III) and an IEP. The evaluation must have been performed by a neuropsychologist, neurologist, psychiatrist, licensed doctoral-level clinical or educational psychologist, or a combination of such professionals with expertise in diagnosing learning disabilities. All documentation must be sent directly from the testing site and addressed to the Teaching and Learning Center.

A student with a disability is required to meet with the Coordinator of SSD if he or she wishes to have academic accommodations arranged for the semester. It is the studentís responsibility to deliver accommodation letters to his or her professors after accommodations have been arranged. Accommodations are set up on a semester-by-semester basis; it is the studentís responsibility to contact the Coordinator of SSD at the beginning of each semester to ensure appropriate accommodations can be made. A student is encouraged to discuss his or her disability with his or her professors and to arrange for specific accommodations for test taking and other course requirements. A student applying for a course substitution should contact the Coordinator of SSD for assistance. All disability information is treated confidentially.