The Academic Support Center’s Disability Services offers a wide variety of services to students with disabilities that include, but are not limited to testing accommodations, providing access to adaptive computer technologies, and acting as a liaison to campus services.
The office is located in the lower level of Thaw Hall in the Academic Support Center. Regular office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. The staff is available to answer questions during these hours and may be reached by calling 865-981-8124. Students may also e-mail the office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disabilities Services seeks to meet the needs of students with disabilities by providing appropriate accommodations that create an equal opportunity to demonstrate their abilities at the College, provide equal access to programs and activities, and are in compliance with state and federal laws to assure that students with disabilities are not subject to discrimination.
Disability Services Procedures
The steps to obtain services through Disability Services are described below:
1. Admission to Maryville College
Students must meet all prerequisites for admission to Maryville College before receiving services through Disability Services. See the current Maryville College catalog for required admission standards.
2. Application for Services
Students are responsible for disclosing a disability and requesting accommodations. Students must complete the Registration for Disability Services and provide current documentation which documents the disability and supports the request for accommodations. Contact Disability Services to request a registration form.
Students should meet with a Disability Services advisor in the Academic Support Center prior to the student's initial semester at Maryville College to determine reasonable accommodations. Additional time may be needed for some modifications, so ample time must be allowed for accommodations to be activated. Students may not receive any accommodation services until they are registered with Disability Services. This ensures that the student is qualified as defined by the ADA as having a disability and that the accommodations are reasonable for the disability.
Students are responsible for disclosing the disability and requesting reasonable accommodations. Documentation is required specifying the disability, its impact, and severity, as well as substantiating the need for accommodations. A licensed clinical professional, familiar with the history and functional implications of the disability, must provide the required documentation. If the initial documentation is incomplete or inadequate to determine the extent or needs of the student, Disability Services has the discretion to require additional documentation.
Current documentation is required for permanent and/or temporary disabilities. In addition, students requesting accommodations for multiple disabilities must provide documentation of all such conditions. The documentation must substantiate current functional limitations. It is the student's responsibility for the financial cost involved in obtaining documentation of a disability. Any additional documentation required or any reevaluation to substantiate the nature of the disability is also the financial responsibility of the student. Disability Services can refer a student to a diagnostician; however, Disability Services may not pay any fees for documentation purposes.
4. Intake Meeting and Accommodation Determination
After completing the Application for Services and acquiring the necessary documentation, students should contact the Disability Services office and set up an appointment with a disability services advisor to determine reasonable accommodations. Together, the student and the disability services advisor will determine what accommodations are reasonable based on the severity and functional limitations of the documented disability.
A reasonable accommodation is a modification or academic adjustment to a course, program, service, activity, or facility, which allows students with disabilities to achieve the same level of functioning as a student without a disability. There are three primary concerns when determining reasonable accommodations. First, the academic accommodation cannot pose a direct threat to the health or safety of others. Second, an accommodation is not reasonable if it substantially alters an essential element of the course or program. Lastly, an accommodation is not reasonable if it poses an undue hardship on the institution.
Accommodations are not required if it is found that a direct threat to the safety of others exists. A direct threat is a significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated or reduced to an acceptable level by any modifications of policies, practices, or procedures or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services.
Disability Services staff believe that the student is the most valuable resource for determining effective accommodations. Disability Services assists students in becoming self-advocates while supporting their essential needs. Disability Services assists faculty by providing information, validating, and providing necessary accommodations. Students who feel that they are experiencing problems in the College setting should contact the office as soon as possible to resolve any difficulties they may be experiencing regarding accommodations or access on campus.
Based on Maryville College’s educational philosophy, the value of faculty-student interaction and small class size, requests for an accommodation of reduced classroom attendance will be considered on an individual basis, but may not always be granted. Students who believe that their medical or psychological condition may necessitate excused absences from class, they should discuss this with a Disability Services staff member.
It is the student's responsibility to arrange for certain services that are outside the scope of Disability Services and Maryville College. These services include, but may not be limited to, attendant care, mobility training, items/services of a personal nature, and sources of financial aid. Disability Services staff are available to consult with students regarding special needs and possible local resources.
Based on requirements for graduation and completion of specific majors, Maryville College does not waive or substitute a course or major requirement that is considered fundamental to the academic program. Students with a disability who wish to request a substitution or a waiver for a course or major requirement should submit the request in writing with supporting disability and medical documentation to Disability Services staff who will send it to the Academic Life Council for action. The Academic Life Council’s decision regarding requests will be include the rationale for the decision, and in cases where a substitution or waiver is approved, will specify a substitution or waiver. Students who are denied a substitution/waiver may follow the Grievance Procedures outlined in the Disability Services Procedures.
5. Accommodation Letter
When the appropriate accommodations have been established, students will receive an accommodation letter. This letter indicates what accommodations would benefit each student for the specific course. It is the student’s responsibility to deliver the letter to their instructors. The accommodation letter is provided reduce any discomfort that students may feel about discussing accommodations with a professor. Faculty must receive the accommodation letter prior to providing any course accommodations for students.
Before issuing an accommodation letter, Disability Services must have a complete file. The file must include the Registration for Services, appropriate documentation, and a signed Release of Information Waiver. Only after these documents have been received, and with approval from the student, can Disability Services staff discuss academic accommodation concerns with faculty members.
6. First Week of Class Responsibilities
Students need to meet with each of their scheduled class professors during the first week of the term and present them with the Accommodation Letter. Faculty members and students should review and discuss the accommodations requested. Students and faculty should contact the Disability Services staff regarding questions about ways to implement the requested accommodations.
7. Continuing Enrollment
Each term, continuing students should register for an upcoming term at the earliest possible opportunity and contact Disability Services at 865-981-8124 to schedule a meeting to review the upcoming class schedule and discuss needed accommodations for that term. If any changes need to be made to accommodations during the term, students should notify the Disability Services staff as soon as possible to review documentation of their specific disability and arrange any needed changes to accommodations for classes.
8. Grievance Procedures
An internal grievance procedure exists for students who believe that accommodations provided were inappropriate or who wish to lodge a complaint of noncompliance on a disabilities matter. Students should submit a written statement of the specific complaint within ten (10) business days of the alleged incident or action to the Academic Support Center Director. The Director will attempt to resolve such concerns informally through discussions with the student and, as necessary, with pertinent faculty or staff members. In some instances, appropriate administrators may be consulted or a meeting convened by the Director in order to reach a resolution. In order to establish the basis for such a grievance, students must have first registered with the Office of Disability Services and provided documentation of disability. Students should expect to receive a written response to their grievance within ten days of submitting it.
Contacting Disability Services
To register for disability services, students should visit the Academic Support Center in Thaw Hall, Lower Level, Room 123, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. or contact the Center at 865-981-8124.