Building An Ability-Inclusive Community at BCC
Welcome to the Disability Services Office! The mission of the Disability Services Office is to provide access and equal educational opportunities for students with disabilities, enabling them to succeed academically, socially, and professionally. We accomplish this by working collaboratively with students, faculty, and staff to determine the appropriate adjustments necessary to address their individual learning needs.
The Disability Services Office is an official New York State Voter Registration site. Individuals who visit the Disability Services Office are allowed to register as New York State voters. Assistance is available to complete the registration.
How to apply for services and disability accommodations?
- Fill out an application: Link to the application (MS Form):
- Upon completion, you will receive a confirmation email
- Reply to the confirmation email from Disability Services Office and attach documentation related to your disability:
- Examples of documentation:
- IEP (Individualized Education Plan), 504 plan from high school, or psychoeducational evaluation reports
- Students with other disabilities such as physical, chronic health conditions, psychological, hearing, vision, or temporary disabilities will need to have a qualified medical practitioner fill out our medical form as documentation: Link to Medical Form (PDF)
- For disability documentation guidelines see CUNY Documentation
- Examples of documentation:
- Schedule an appointment with Disability Services Office by phone at 718.289.5874 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Assessment appointments with Disability Services Office can be scheduled for MS Teams or Zoom
- During the assessment appointment, we will review your application and disability documentation to determine your personalized accommodation plan
- If you need assistance in completing the intake form, please call or email Disability Services Office and we would be happy to assist.
What happens after you apply for services?
- The Disability Services Office will issue an accommodation letter confirming you are registered with our office. Earlier registered students may have been issued a disability accommodations ID card (This card is separate from your BCC student ID)
- Your disability accommodations ID card or accommodation letter is proof that you are legally entitled to accommodations as mandated by BCC, the Americans With Disabilities Act, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
- Your accommodations will be listed and you will need to email or show the provided accommodations letter or ID card to any faculty and staff from who you need to request accommodations.
- These letters outline the student’s disability status, without stating the nature of the disability, and clearly state the specific accommodations that have been put in place.
- Accommodations are not retroactive. Please self-disclose to your professors as early as possible in the semester. Accommodations should be requested prior to taking any exams/quizzes/due assignments. Please review the information on requesting testing accommodations found here
How is eligibility determination made?
According to CUNY Documentation Guidelines (see www.cuny.edu), “Students diagnosed with a disability who request services or accommodations are required to provide appropriate and current documentation. Prior documentation such as an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or a history of receiving accommodations from a former school does not necessarily validate the need for services or continuation of accommodations at the university level. This history can, however, be attached to the current documentation as part of a comprehensive assessment battery.”
Evaluating a Disability:
The evaluation for a learning disability should be conducted by an evaluator with comprehensive training with adults with learning disabilities. The evaluation for a psychological disorder should be provided by a professional who is qualified and has appropriate training in diagnosing psychological and psychiatric disorders.
Guidelines for Evaluations:
The following guidelines apply for all disability types recognized by the Americans with Disabilities Act: The evaluator must be qualified. The evaluation must be current, it must be signed and dated by the evaluator, and it must include recommendations for accommodations. All evaluations must include a detailed history of the functional impact.
Determining a Student’s Eligibility for Services:
After a thorough review of documentation, eligibility will be determined by the Disability Services Office and accommodations will be provided.
Disabilities – This Is Just a Small Sample:
- Learning Disabilities: Dyslexia, Dysgraphia, Dysphasia, Dyscalculia.
- Psychiatric Disorders: Depression, Bipolar Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, Schizophrenia, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
- Medical Conditions: Cerebral Palsy, Multiple Sclerosis, Cancer, HIV, Spinal Injury, Lupus, Seizure Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).
- Low Vision, Blind.
- Hard-of-hearing, Deaf.
- Other students may be in recovery from addiction or have conditions that present temporary limitations.
What services do you offer?
All services provided are determined according to individual needs, on a case-by-case basis. The following is a list of services that a BCC student might receive:
- Extended time for exams.
- Separate, quiet location to take exams.
- Use of a calculator for exams.
- Class notes provided.
- A reader.
- A digital recorder or tape recorder.
- Sign language interpreter.
- FM system to boost sound.
- Assistive Technology: Dragon Speech (speech recognition software), JAWS (screen reader), and Kurzweil (text-to-speech and software literacy solutions).
- General academic and personal counseling.
- Transition counseling for incoming high school students.
- Students with temporary conditions, such as pregnancy, may require accommodations.
- Classes in accessible buildings.
What kind of accommodations do you offer?
According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, no otherwise qualified person with a disability shall be denied a benefit or opportunity or be excluded from participation solely on the basis of that disability. The Disability Services Office at Bronx Community College provides students with disabilities the accommodations necessary for them to access all we have to offer.
The documentation provided by the student must meet the standards outlined in the CUNY Guidelines.
After a thorough review of the documentation by a qualified staff member in Disability Services Office, the student and staff member will meet to identify what has worked for the student in the past and what might work now in this particular setting. Together they will identify appropriate, reasonable accommodations.
Once the accommodations are written, Disability Services Office presents the student with an accommodation letter. The student will then share this accommodation letter with his or her professor to self-disclose and request accommodations that have been approved. These letters outline the student’s disability status, without stating the nature of the disability, and clearly state the specific accommodations that have been put in place. (For a list of possible accommodations, see the “Services” page of the Disability Services website.)
How to resolve a conflict?
We are committed to working collaboratively with students and the campus community to provide access to all students registered with Disability Services Office.
Every effort is made to ensure that students with disabilities are provided with appropriate accommodations, which are determined on a case-by-case basis.
In the event that a student is unhappy with the Disability Services Office, s/he should:
- Arrange an appointment with the Manager of Disability Services Office to discuss the situation.
- If, after that meeting, the issue is still unresolved, the student should then make an appointment with the Vice President of Student Success.
- If the problem still cannot be resolved and the question concerns access and accommodations, then the student should make a formal written request to the Office of Affirmative Action in Language Hall to investigate the issue.
- In the event that the problem cannot be resolved after all steps have been taken, a formal complaint can be filed with the Office of Civil Rights.
Loew Hall [LO], Room 211
Follow Disability Services:
We offer counseling and referrals, arrange crucial auxiliary aids and services, including assistive technology services, note takers, readers, sign language interpreter services, priority registration, and alternative testing arrangements.