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General Information

Differences between IDEA and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA)

There are a number of differences between IDEA provided in elementary and high school where a student may qualify for modifications and accommodations.  These students may have received services above and beyond that were not offered to students without disabilities.  At the university level, qualified students with disabilities are entitled to academic accommodations that eliminate barriers which would prevent a student from equal access to the learning environment under the ADAAA.

Accommodations are intended to “level the playing field,” not offer an academic advantage. In other words, the university is not required to lessen requirements or modify a class to the degree that it jeopardizes the academic integrity of a course.

Differences between Texas State University, Community Colleges, and other 4-Year Colleges and Universities

The method used to provide services for students with disabilities varies at every community college and 4-year private and public college in the country.  For student’s with a disability who are planning to attend and/or transfer to Texas State University, which includes the Round Rock Campus (RRC), students ought to familiarize themselves with the Office of Disability Services (ODS) including the philosophy of service provision, documentation requirements, and services offered by the ODS.

Texas State University Round Rock Campus (RRC)

In addition to serving students with disabilities at Texas State University in San Marcos, we are also committed to meeting the needs of students with disabilities enrolled in classes at the Texas State University Round Rock Campus (RRC).  Disability services for students enrolled at the Texas State University RRC are coordinated by the General Disability Specialist in the One-Stop Center.  The processes for accessing some services and accommodations at the Round Rock Campus may differ from those described for the main Texas State campus.

Location:

Avery Building, Suite 201
1555 University Blvd.
Round Rock, TX 78665-8017
Phone: 512.716.4007

 

Registration and Documentation Requirements at ODS

In order to qualify for accommodations at Texas State, a student must register with and provide documentation of disability to the Office of Disability Services (ODS) prior to, or at the time services are requested. Services are provided for students from a variety of disability backgrounds including, but not limited to the following:

What if I Suspect I Have a Disability?

ODS does not screen students for indicators of a learning or other disability.  It is the student's responsibility to get diagnosed or documentation for a disability from a certified professional (e.g., psychologist, psychiatrist or physician) in order for ODS to establish the student's need for appropriate accommodations. We have a list of local, certified professionals in the San Antonio, San Marcos, and Austin areas. The Office of Disability Services does not endorse any of the certified professionals on this list.

What if I Have a Temporary Disability?

The ODS and university offers services for a student with a temporary disability.  Examples of temporary disabilities addressed by these services include, but are not limited to, broken arms, broken legs, hand injuries, torn ligaments, etc.

Management of Services

Every student who qualifies for services from the ODS will meet with an ODS Specialist to review their approved accommodations and the process necessary to receive each accommodation.

As a self advocate, every student is responsible for informing faculty members and other appropriate university personnel about their need for accommodations. Professional staff in the ODS will help facilitate access to accommodations through written and/or verbal communication with faculty and staff members.

Determination of Approved Accommodations

The ODS will review disability documentation for the purpose of determining appropriate accommodations for any potential student or applicant for admission. Students with disabilities must meet the same admission requirements as other students.

Accommodations selected will be based on the documentation provided in accordance in the guidelines outlined above; a future student should not assume that the accommodations they received at their prior institution/high school will also be provided at Texas State.

The ODS will review a student’s disability documentation within 30 working days of receipt.  After accommodations are identified, the student will be contacted for an appointment with an ODS specialist via Bobcat Mail.  At this appointment, the specialist will review and discuss the following:

Accommodation Approval Form

The ODS specialist will explain to the student the accommodations they have been approved to receive and the process for accessing each accommodation.  The student will be asked to acknowledge their understanding of each accommodation by initialing, dating, and signing their Accommodation Approval Form.  By signing this form, the student accepts "responsibility as a registered student with a disability to provide ODS with written notice of any issues (e.g., inappropriate or ineffective accommodations, interruption of services, etc.) that [they] may encounter. It is [their] responsibility to request a new accommodation letter every semester as well as communicate [their] need for auxiliary aids and services to my professors."  They also accept responsibility to request accommodations in a timely manner, and understands a failure to do so may delay an accommodation being provided.

At the conclusion of the appointment, a copy of the Accommodation Approval Form will be placed in the student’s ODS confidential file.  Students are encouraged to contact their ODS specialist if the assigned accommodations are not meeting their disability-related needs.
Accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

  • Special Group's Early Registration
  • Assistive technology/alternate format textbooks
  • Accommodations for in-class and online exams
  • Volunteer note takers
  • Preferential seating in the classroom
  • Liaison and advocacy between students, faculty and staff
  • ASL interpreters
  • Captioning (speech-to-text services)

Request Accommodation Letter

The ODS specialist will explain to the student how to request their accommodation letter for the current and following semesters.  The student will be oriented with the steps and processes for receiving their letter and retrieving signatures from each of their professors.  This will need to be repeated each semester.

Return Accommodation Letter

Students will be informed to return their accommodation letter and signature form each semester in order to access their approved accommodations.

Types of Accommodations and Services Provided

Confidentiality

The ODS will not discuss the specifics of a student’s disability, or share a student’s records with any off-campus individual or agency without written permission from the student on the Consent for Release of Confidential Information form.

Release and Confidentiality of Information

Students are asked to complete an "Information Release" form in order to grant permission for:

  • Releasing information (name, NetID) to Information Technology Services for specific use in accessing assistive technology stations in Texas State University computer labs
  • Discussing their disability as it relates to their accommodations and academic needs with university faculty members and professional staff in departments including the Counseling Center, Student Learning Assistance Center, Student Health Center, and Athletic Center
  • Discussing their disability as it relates to their accommodations with professional staff in off-campus agencies including the Texas Workforce Commission Rehabilitative Services, Texas Commission for the Blind, or Department of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services
  • Discussing their disability as it relates to their accommodations with their parents/guardians
  • In accordance to the state of Texas Senate Bill 37, collect data in compliance with FERPA to document the number of students being served by the Office of Disability Services with a diagnosis of an Intellectual or Developmental Disability and/or a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder

This does not include the release of any student documentation or records.  There is also no record made of a student receiving services from the ODS on a student’s academic transcript.  The ODS also recommends that students not share their disability documentation with any member of university community outside of the ODS.

Students should keep a copy of any disability documentation provided to the ODS.  The ODS will maintain a registered student's disability documentation and file 10 years after the last semester services are requested.

Self Advocacy

Self advocacy is at the core of all services provided by the ODS office. Students with disabilities at Texas State are expected to be active participants in the accommodation process. Our philosophy is based on the foundation that self advocacy begins with a student knowing about and understanding their disability so they can express their needs to faculty members and others. Being a self advocate also means knowing your rights and responsibilities as it relates to your specific accommodations. A self advocate can also compromise when needed, in order to get the most out of a situation. As it relates to accommodations, this does not mean settling for something that is ineffective or does not meet your needs. A good self advocate also knows when and where to go for help.