Academic Adjustment Procedures

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Everett Community College (EvCC) is committed to providing auxiliary aids and academic adjustments, including core services, to qualified students with disabilities. The purpose of these procedures is to identify the rights and responsibilities of students and EvCC under the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 Acrobat PDF Reader Icon and to establish clear and responsible guidelines for seeking and receiving academic adjustments.

No student shall, on the basis of his/her disability, be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subject to discrimination under any college program or activity. Everett Community College is committed to providing qualified students with disabilities an equal opportunity to access the benefits, rights, and privileges of college services, programs and activities, in the most accessible setting appropriate to the students’ needs, in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act External Site Link, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 External Site Link and the disability laws in the State of Washington.

Auxiliary aids and academic adjustments under these procedures include, but are not limited to:

  • Modification of academic requirements, and flexibility in test-taking arrangements;
  • Adjustments in nonacademic services and other rules;
  • Auxiliary aids and services (examples: Sign Language interpreters, priority registration, books on tape, notetaking services or adaptive equipment or technology)

Everett Community College will make those modifications to its academic requirements that (1) are necessary to ensure that those requirements do not discriminate, or have the effect of discriminating, against a qualified student with a disability based on that disability, and (2) do not fundamentally alter the course, or require alteration of essential program requirements.

Appropriate academic adjustments will be provided to qualified students with disabilities for recruitment, the application process, enrollment, registration, financial aid, course work, academic counseling, and nonacademic programs and services.

Definitions

A. "Student" is a person enrolled at the College.

B. "Student with a disability" refers to any student who: (1) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities (i.e., caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working; (2) has a record of such an impairment (has a history of, or has been classified as having, a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities); or (3) is regarded as having such an impairment.

C. A "qualified student with a disability" is one who, with or without academic adjustments, meets the academic and technical standards required for admission to, participation in, and/or fulfillment of the essential requirements for college programs and activities.

D. "Health Care Professional" means a person who has completed a course of study and is licensed or certified to practice in a field of health care, which includes the diagnosis and assessment of the particular disability or disabilities in question.

E. "Program accessibility" means that all programs and services, when viewed in their entirety, are accessible to persons with a disability.

F. "Academic Adjustments" in college programs and services are modifications of those programs, policies, practices, and procedures that enable qualified individuals with a disability to have an equal opportunity to benefit from, and have access to, college programs and services, employment, and the provision of auxiliary aids and services.

G. "Core Services" are those services listed in State of Washington Laws of 1994, Ch. 105, that are necessary to ensure students with disabilities are reasonably accommodated at the College.

Obligations of the College - General:

A. Comply with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973External Site Link and Section 202 of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990External Site Link, as amended, in addition to pertinent Washington State laws.

B. Notify students of the College’s policy of nondiscrimination on the basis of disability and of the steps s/he may take if s/he believes discrimination has taken place. This notice shall be included in all formal correspondence that communicates decisions or policies adversely affecting the individual’s status or rights within the institution of higher education. This notice shall include the phone numbers of the U.S. Office of Civil Rights and the Washington State Human Rights Commission.

C. Work with the individual on a case-by-case basis to select and provide those academic adjustments/core services appropriate for each qualified individual with a disability.

D. When a student makes a request for an academic adjustment, the college may request that the student provide verification from a health care professional, qualified to diagnose that disability, that s/he has the disability as claimed and that it has the effect of necessitating the adjustment requested. The College may obtain a second opinion at its own expense from a heath care professional of its selection. Such inquiries must be limited to verification of the student's claims, except that the Center for Disability Services (CDS) Director may also request that the health care professional suggest possible effective alternative academic adjustments.

E. The College shall provide an internal grievance procedure for addressing disputes related to requests for auxiliary aids and academic adjustments. Such procedures shall: explain the method for submitting a grievance; describe any internal appeals process; identify an individual responsible for overseeing the process; set forth reasonable time frames for the review and resolution of the grievance; and provide for documentation of complaints submitted and the steps taken to attempt resolution.

Obligations of the College to Students:

A. Assure that no student is denied the benefits of, excluded from participation in, or otherwise subjected to discrimination under the educational program or activity operated by the recipient because of the absence of educational auxiliary aids for students with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills.

B. Make available to all students information on the services available to students with disabilities, including the name and location of the CDS office, and the process for accessing those services.

C. Maintain the academic integrity of its programs.

D. Not make pre-admission inquiry as to whether the applicant has a disability, except as provided by law.

Obligations and Rights of the Qualified Student

The College is obligated to provide academic adjustments to a qualified student with a known disability. What is appropriate for the student is a case-by-case determination. It is the obligation of the student to seek the academic adjustments. An individual who seeks academic adjustments under this policy is responsible for documenting the nature and extent of the disability. The College will work collaboratively with the individual in determining the appropriate academic adjustment.

To ensure that needed academic adjustments are provided in a timely manner, the individual shall:

A. Provide timely notice and documentation of the nature and extent of the disability, and the academic adjustment requests of students, to the Director of the Center for Disability Services. Requests for academic adjustments from students should be received by the Center for Disability Services 6 weeks prior to the beginning of the quarter for which the request is made, when possible. Lack of advance notice may delay the availability of an academic adjustment.

B. Provide such additional documentation on the nature and extent of their disability as the college may require for determining appropriate academic adjustments. Such documentation may include, but is not limited to, identification of tests administered, test results, description of the covered disability and recommended academic adjustments.

C. Cooperate with the Center for Disability Services to develop an appropriate plan for academic adjustments.

D. Communicate with instructors the need for academic adjustments in classes, as necessary.

E. Promptly notify the Center for Disability Services of any problems encountered in receiving the agreed-upon academic adjustment.

The Center for Disability Services Office

The authority to make the initial academic adjustment decisions on behalf of the institution has been assigned by the college president to the CDS Director, who shall make appropriate determination of academic adjustments for students based on documentation provided.

The Center for Disability Services is committed to a reasonable approach in the identification of students with disabilities, including contacting all students who voluntarily self-identify during the college admission or orientation process.

Information regarding a disability will be kept confidential according to Federal and State privacy regulations unless a student signs a Release of Information Form in accordance with college procedures.

The Center for Disability Services office will assist and advise each qualified student with a disability who requests academic adjustments under this policy in developing an instructional plan, identifying academic adjustments appropriate for the student, and ensuring that the agreed-upon adjustments are provided.

Academic Adjustment - Examples for Students by Category

A. Academic Adjustments:

Academic adjustments may include, but are not limited to:

  • Flexibility in timelines for completion of courses, certification, and degree requirements;
  • Substitution of specific courses required for the completion of degrees;
  • Adaptation of the manner in which specific courses are conducted;
  • Flexibility in teaching methods and test-taking arrangements. Methods used for evaluating the achievement of students who have a disability that impairs sensory, manual, or speaking skills as will best ensure that the results of the evaluation represents the student’s achievement in the course rather than reflecting the student’s impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills (except where such skills are the factors that the test purports to measure).

B. Auxiliary Aids and Services:

  • Sign language, oral and tactile interpreter services or real-time captioning;
  • Early registration;
  • Textbooks and other educational materials in alternative media including but not limited to: large print, audiotape, electronic format or Braille;
  • Facilitation of physical access including relocating of classes, activities and services to accessible locations;
  • Access to adaptive equipment including TTYs, low-vision reading aids, closed circuit televisions, 4-track tape players, brailing devices, photocopy machines that produce enlarged copies, and adaptive computer equipment;
  • Release of syllabi, study guides and other appropriate instructor-produced materials in advance of general distribution, and access beyond the regular classroom session to slides, films, overheads, and other media, and taping of lectures.

C. Access

  • Ongoing review and coordination of efforts to ensure campus accessibility, including barrier-free design, signage, identification of hazards of mobility barriers, maintenance of access during construction, snow and ice clearance, and adequate disability parking for all facilities;
  • Facilitating physical access to programs and services including relocating classes, activities, and services to accessible facilities;
  • Referral to appropriate on-campus and off-campus resources, services, and agencies; and
  • Access for students with disabilities to tutoring, mentoring, peer counseling, and academic advising, if available to other students on campus.

D. Course subsitutions and/or Waivers

A student seeking academic adjustments in completing a course due to a documented disability shall request assistance from the Director of the Center for Disability Services. Requests for substitutions and waivers must be related to the student’s documented disability.

Requests for exemptions and substitutions for a particular course or program are considered only when a qualified student with a disability has demonstrated that, even with academic adjustments and auxiliary aids/services provided by the College, he or she is unable to successfully complete the course solely because of the disability.

All requests for course substitution must be submitted in writing by the student to the Director of CDS and must contain an explanation of the relationship of the student’s disability to the lack of success in completing the course.

Requests for waiver of a program/graduation requirement will only be considered when the course substitution is not successful. Usually, such requirements will not be waived, but will be adjusted, or an appropriate alternate requirement will be arranged. The instructional dean shall consider such requests in the same manner as provided above. The dean's response shall go to the Vice-President of Instruction and Student Services, who will make the final decision on requests for waivers.

E. Appeals

  • Student Affairs and Grievances
    If a student has evidence that he/she has been unfairly treated by the Director for the Center for Disability Services or in other matters related to student services, the student should follow the Student Affairs Grievance Procedure (WAC 132-120-370). The first step of this procedure, with regard to Disability Services, is to contact the Vice President of Instruction and Student Services and the Center for Disability Services to discuss the situation. The full procedure is described in the EvCC Student Handbook.
  • Academic Grievances
    If a student has evidence that he/she has been unfairly treated in academic matters, the student should follow the Student Academic Grievance Procedure (WAC 132-120-360). The full procedure is described in the EvCC Student Handbook.
  • Discrimination/Sexual Harassment
    If a student has a discrimination or sexual harassment complaint, he or she should follow the Discrimination/Sexual Harassment procedure (WAC 132 120-380). The full procedure is described in the EvCC Student Handbook
  • Office for Civil Rights
    The Office for Civil Rights (OCR)External Site Link in the U.S. Department of Education handles complaints pertaining to post-secondary institutions. If a student is not satisfied with the on-campus efforts to resolve a complaint, OCR is usually the place to turn. OCR will examine the factors of the alleged discrimination and interview appropriate persons to establish the facts. They can be contacted at (206) 220-7900 (voice) or (206) 220-7907 (TTY).
  • Washington State Human Rights Commission
    The Washington State Human Rights CommissionExternal Site Link can be contacted at 800-605-7324 (toll free), (206) 464-6500 (voice), or (206) 587-5268 (TTY) to file a complaint(s) outside of the Everett Community College System.

Documentation of Disabling Conditions:

A. Responsibilities and Costs
Students who are seeking academic adjustments from the Center for Disability Services at Everett Community College must submit documentation to verify eligibility of services. Documentation of disability and related information will be kept in a separate file in the CDS office. The cost and responsibility for providing this documentation shall be borne by the student.

B. Currency
The provision of all academic adjustments and services is based upon the assessment of the current impact of the disability on academic performance. In most cases, this means the documentation must be from within the past three years. Since assessment constitutes the basis for determining academic adjustments, it is in a student’s best interest to provide recent and appropriate documentation to serve as the basis for decision-making about a student’s needs for academic adjustments in an academically competitive environment.

C. Specific Documentation Requirements
Requirements for documentation of specific disabling conditions are available through the Center for Disability Services.