Disability Services

Disability Services for Students
Erin Kelley, Disability Specialist
Hours M - F 8:30 - 12:00 & 1:00 - 5:00
Location: Ritter Library, 2nd Floor
(440) 826-2303
(440) 826-3832 (confidential fax)

Frequently Asked Questions

Student FAQs

Do I have to disclose my disability to someone at Baldwin Wallace? 
If you would like to receive services, you are asked to disclose your disability to Erin Kelley or Alsace Toure.  In addition, you need to complete the steps to get connected with our office.  Your disability status is confidential and will only be shared with necessary BW faculty, staff or administration on a need to know basis. 

What should I do if I feel I have been discriminated by my professor or a staff member at BW because of my disability?
If you feel that you have been discriminated by your professor or by a member of the BW university staff, contact the Disability Specialist, Erin Kelley, or Director of Disability Services, Alsace Toure, to discuss the matter. 

What are some of the services BW offers?
Available services for students connected with DSS may include but are not limited to the following:  extra time for examinations, alternated text, reduced distraction test environment, etc. 

Students are encouraged to talk with the Disability Specialist to determine what accommodations are appropriate based on their individual needs.  Appropriate services and accommodations are determined and offered to students on an individual basis. 

When should I submit my documentation?
It is recommended that students submit their documentation as early as possible.  The review process may take up to thirty (30) business days.  Therefore, you are strongly encouraged to initiate the process as early as possible because accommodations are not retroactive. 

For first semester freshmen, we recommend that you submit your documentation and application to our office after you have been admitted to BW.  You can schedule an intake meeting the Friday before your summer orientation. 

At my high school, I received different or more accommodations than BW is willing to grant me.  Why is there such a difference in services between BW and my high school?
There are significant differences between Disability Services in high school and college.  In high schools typically the services and accommodations provided are meant to ensure your success.  In a university setting, the laws dictate that we must provide equal access to the curriculum.  As a result, the services a university provides may be immensely different from those you received in high school.  Please click here for details about how to prepare for post-secondary education.  

Is it ever too late to request accommodations?

It is never too late to begin the process to apply for accommodations.  However, accommodations are not retroactive.  This means, any previous assignments, tests and exams cannot be changed if you are unsatisfied with your overall grades.  If you have been approved for academic accommodations, you will have to abide by certain time lines depending on the kind of accommodation deemed appropriate (ex., accommodated test requests, sign language interpreter, alternate text formats).

Do I have to use all of my accommodations in every class?
Some accommodations are not appropriate for all classes.  This is why it is important to talk to your instructor about how the accommodations will be implemented in the course.  For example, if you have been approved to be able to use a calculator but the course is a history class, the accommodation is irrelevant. 

If you choose, however not to use an accommodation in a given class, then you will not be provided the opportunity to retake the exam or make-up an assignment with the accommodation at a later date. 

Can I request an accommodation directly from my professor before I have been approved for accommodations?
No.  You should not request academic accommodations from faculty unless you have been approved by Disability Services for Students and have received a Letter of Accommodation, LOA. 

If I get approved, who informs my instructors about my accommodations?
DSS will notify faculty via email of your approved academic accommodations after you submit a LOA request.  You and your instructor should then meet to discuss how the accommodations will be implemented. 

What if my professor refuses to provide an accommodation listed on my Letter of Accommodation (LOA)?
If your professor refuses to provide an approved accommodation, please contact the Disability Specialist Erin Kelley as soon as possible. 

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