Transitioning to College
Welcome to Valencia College Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD)! In addition to the general challenges all students entering college face, students with disabilities transitioning to college need to be aware of changes in their rights and responsibilities and the procedures to receive disability services.
What are some things you need to consider?
Diploma Options: Typically a standard diploma is required in order to be a degree seeking student at Valencia, although there may be some provisional status for a student without a standard diploma. OSD speaks to prospective students as well as current students. Call us early with questions. High School students are encouraged to plan ahead.
Documentation of a Disability: In order to establish eligibility for accommodations, a student must provide current documentation of a disability that significantly impacts him/her in a major life function, such as learning, reading, seeing, hearing, walking, etc. In most cases the Individualized Education Plan is not sufficient documentation; OSD may require current evidence or testing from a qualified diagnostician.
For more information about what students with disabilities need to know about transitioning to college, review the following information: Students with Disabilities Preparing for Postsecondary Education: Know your rights and Responsibilities
Students seeking accommodations are required to provide recent documentation from an appropriate health care provider or professional. If documentation is incomplete, or otherwise inadequate to determine the disability and/or reasonable accommodations, the Office for Students with Disabilities may require additional documentation.
To be eligible for disability-related services, students must have a documented disability as defined by the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504, and/or the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990/2008. A person with a disability is an individual with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities (i.e. seeing, walking, talking); or has a record of such an impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment.
This definition includes, but is not limited to
- Persons with mobility impairments
- Persons with learning disabilities
- Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing
- Persons who are blind or have low vision
- Persons with one or many serious contagious and non-contagious
diseases, including AIDS, epilepsy, cancer and tuberculosis
- Persons with psychological disorders
The first step in the eligibility process is to submit appropriate documentation of disability to the Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD). The College must ensure that the student is a person with a disability and that we can provide a rationale for reasonable accommodations. Your OSD advisor will meet with you to discuss how your disability impacts your learning and how we can assist. Typically, documentation is also required.
OSD Registration Process
In order to request accommodations from the College, the student must complete the following steps in the Office for Students with Disabilities registration process:
- Meet with the OSD advisor, by appointment or by walk in, to discuss your situation. In most cases it is recommended that you send documentation ahead of time so we can review it. Be sure to explain to your advisor how your disability impacts you and what accommodations you are requesting.
- Provide appropriate documentation of the disability for which accommodations are being requested.
- Complete the self assessment (available at your first meeting) and other paperwork as needed.
Until all steps of the registration process have been completed, the student will be considered pending with OSD and will not be eligible for services or accommodations. Incomplete files will be kept for one term and then destroyed. The student may, however, begin the process again at any time.