Disability Services at the University Level - FAQ
Adapted from Students with Disabilities Preparing for Postsecondary Education. Office of Civil Rights (OCR): http://ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/transition.html
Do I have to inform Seton Hall that I have a disability?
No. However, if you want Seton Hall University (SHU) to provide an
academic adjustment, you must identify yourself to Disability Support
Services (DSS) as having a disability. Likewise, you should let DSS know
about your disability if you want to ensure that you are assigned to
accessible facilities. In any event, your disclosure of a disability is
As a student with a disability leaving high school and entering
postsecondary education, will I see differences in my rights and how
they are addressed?
Yes. Section 504 and Title II protect elementary, secondary and
postsecondary students from discrimination. Nevertheless, several of the
requirements that apply through high school are different from the
requirements that apply beyond high school. Unlike your high school, SHU
is not required to provide free appropriate public education. Rather,
we are required to provide appropriate academic adjustments as necessary
to ensure that the University does not discriminate on the basis of
What documentation should I provide?
Schools may set reasonable standards for documentation. Some schools
require more documentation than others. SHU requires that you provide
documentation prepared by an appropriate professional, such as a medical
doctor, psychologist, or other qualified diagnostician. In general, the
required documentation must include a diagnosis of your current
disability; how the diagnosis was reached; the credentials of the
professional; how your disability affects a major life activity; and how
the disability affects your academic performance. Specific
documentation guidelines are available on the DSS website.
Although an individualized education program (IEP) or Section 504
plan, if you have one, may help identify services that have been
effective for you in the past, it is not sufficient documentation at the
college level. This is because postsecondary education presents
different demands than high school education, and what you need to meet
these new demands may be different. Also, in some cases, the nature of a
disability may change. If the documentation that you have does not meet
SHU’s requirements, a DSS administrator will tell you in a timely
manner what additional documentation you need to provide. You may need a
new evaluation in order to provide the required documentation.
Who has to pay for a new evaluation?
Neither your high school nor SHU is required to conduct or pay for a
new evaluation to document your disability and need for an academic
adjustment. This may mean that you have to pay or find funding to pay an
appropriate professional for an evaluation. If you are eligible for
services through your state vocational rehabilitation agency, you may
qualify for an evaluation at no cost to you. DSS may also be able to
provide an off-campus referral.
How do institutions determine what academic adjustments are appropriate for me?
Once you have identified yourself as a student with a disability,
requested an academic adjustment and provided appropriate documentation,
SHU staff will discuss with you what academic adjustments are
appropriate in light of your individual needs and the nature of SHU’s
program(s). Students with disabilities possess unique knowledge of
their individual disabilities and should be prepared to discuss the
functional challenges they face and, if applicable, what has or has not
worked for them in the past.
In providing an academic adjustment, SHU is not required to lower or
substantially modify essential requirements. In addition, your
postsecondary school does not have to make adjustments that would
fundamentally alter the nature of a service, program, or activity, or
that would result in an undue financial or administrative burden.
Finally, your postsecondary school does not have to provide personal
attendants, individually prescribed devices, readers for personal use or
study, or other devices or services of a personal nature, such as
tutoring and typing.