ELIGIBILITY AND REQUESTING ACCOMMODATIONS
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN HIGH SCHOOL AND COLLEGE-LEVEL DISABILITY ACCOMMODATION
You can find a list of typical accommodations on the types of accommodations page. Once you have been accepted and admitted to SMU, please follow the step-by-step instructions to apply for accommodations and services to have SMU's DASS team review your documentation.
SMU students may request accommodations for any condition that can be considered a disability. There is a process for applying for accommodations and services and you, the student, will need to initiate that process. Disability Accommodations & Success Strategies (DASS) works with students individually to ensure they are able to execute approved accommodations with their professors. Additionally, DASS offers academic coaching for undergraduate students with LD/ADHD, which can help with the transition to college and beyond. This may include assistance with executive functioning issues, time management, organization, reading and study skills, and self-advocating. There are additional services, such as HDEV 1110: Reading and Learning Strategies, a 1-credit elective course specially designed for students with learning and attention disorders that focuses on reading and study skills. In addition, there is a student-run support and networking group called Students for New Learning (SNL). Finally, all SMU students can utilize the Learning Enhancement Center's academic services, such as free tutoring, study skills workshops, and the Writing Center. There is also assistive technology housed in the L.E.C. as well as most of the campus libraries for students with disabilities to utilize. All services, including accommodations as well as academic coaching, tutoring, and study skills support, are provided to SMU students at no additional charge.
Students must first read the step-by-step instructions. Then they will complete and submit the Accommodation Request Form (available on the instructions page) along with their uploaded supporting documentation. Once both the documentation AND request are received, DASS staff will review the information and contact you within 2 to 3 weeks. For additional information, please plan on attending the DASS breakout session during AARO (Academic Advising, Registration, and Orientation). Attending the breakout session will give you direct contact with a DASS staff member, who will inform you of the services available and how to utilize them. This is a critical step in assimilating to college as a student with a disabiity.
Maybe. SMU does need to understand the current impact(s) of your condition; therefore, the most up to date documentation is the most helpful. Here are some suggested guidelines for giving us the most current, relevant information to understand your needs:
ADHD -- Every 3 years
Learning Disabilities -- Every 3 years
Physical and Systemic Illness or Injury -- Every 6 to 12 months, unless the condition is permanent
Psychological Disabilities -- Every 6 to 12 months
Additional disabilities are discussed in the specific documentation guidelines on our website.
Documentation is typically reviewed in 2 to 3 weeks, but can take a longer or shorter time depending on several factors, including: the complexity of the request, the thoroughness of the supporting information/documentation submitted, and the time of year. From mid-summer through the first two months of the Fall Semester, we receive hundreds of new accommodation requests, so we urge incoming students to submit new requests and documentation well before the start of classes.
Documentation is evaluated primarily by the Accommodations Coordinators on the DASS team.
After the accommodation review process is complete, your DASS Coordinator will notify you by email. If an accommodation is not approved, your Coordinator will communicate that with you and let you know if additional information is needed to move forward. If accommodations are approved, you will need to set up an intake meeting with your Coordinator through our online interface, DASS Link. You must be enrolled in at least one class to have an intake.
To schedule and appointment, log in to DASS Link, click the blue Appointment tab and select New Appointment. In the dropdown menu, select Intake, the appropriate coordinator, and a date and time range that works with your schedule. Select the one that’s best for you, and submit the request. You’ll receive a confirmation from your DASS Coordinator to finalize the appointment.
Colleges and universities may have different procedures and documentations guidelines for students requesting disability-related accommodations. All SMU students apply for accommodations by following our step-by-step instructions. We encourage students to submit their request 1-2 months before the semester starts, if possible.
Before completing the online accommodation request form, gather the documentation that supports your request for accommodations. This is likely the same packet you submitted to your previous school in order to be considered for accommodations. In addition, please provide a copy of your accommodation letter from your previous institution. If you received accommodations on the SAT or ACT, please provide that verification, as well. You can try to contact the disability services coordinator from your previous university or college to email a list of your accommodations and any other pertinent documentation to you. You will upload all of your disability-related documentation when you complete the online request form.
We are most interested in the current impact of your condition. Since you’ve been in college already, take some time to share the day-to-day impacts when you complete the online form.
DASS and the A-LEC offer many resources for SMU students, including transfer students. For students with ADD/ADHD and learning differences, DASS resources include academic coaching, a specialized section of HDEV 1110: Reading and Learning Strategies, and our Students for New Learning group. Students can also consult with DASS staff to improve self-advocacy skills. Student Academic Success Programs (SASP) offers a section of HDEV 1110: reading and Learning Strategies specifically for transfer students, tutoring sessions for a variety of difficult courses, workshops to put new techniques to work, and a writing center to brainstorm and improve your writing.
No. The University has no way of knowing if a student has a disability and received accommodations until the enrolled student discloses the information to DASS. There are also different laws and expectations at the college level; therefore, not everyone who was accommodated in high school will qualify for accommodations at the college level. To get a better understanding of your rights as a student transitioning into college with a disability, please see the Office for Civil Rights’ website on these issues.www2.ed.gov/print/about/offices/list/ocr/transition.html
There are several changes that will happen. Please download and read this article to get an idea of what some of those changes are.
Yes, typically the SMU pharmacy can fill prescriptions for controlled medication, including psychotropic and ADHD-related medication. They have even received a waiver from the state of Texas in order to fill out-of-state prescriptions. Please visit their website for more details.