Procedures for Obtaining SSD Authorizations for Academic Accommodation
Students seeking disability-based accommodations in academic courses should request such adjustments through the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) office.
Students who do not already have valid SSD Authorizations for Academic Accommodations must follow the Preliminary Application and Assessment Procedures before completing an Academic Accommodations Request Form.
Preliminary Application and Assessment Procedures
Based on the documentation submitted and the information gained during the Intake Appointment, the Director or Learning Disabilities Specialist will determine and authorize academic accommodations appropriate to the needs of the student and the requirements of the courses in which he or she is registered that semester.
In subsequent semesters, students approved for such assistance will receive a letter inviting them to request "SSD Academic Accommodation Authorization Letters" for specific courses, along with a Request Form for their completion and submission to the office.
Procedures for Requesting SSD Authorization Letters for Academic Accommodations in specific courses:
- The student meets with the SSD Director or Learning Disabilities Specialist to complete the Preliminary Application and Assessment Process.
- The student completes and returns the "Request Form for Academic Accommodation Authorization Letters" to SSD as soon as the student's schedule has been finalized.
- The student will be responsible for picking up his or her accommodation letters from the SSD office and sharing them with professors. (Proof of personal identity will be required before the letters are released to the student.)
SSD's Timeline for Processing Completed Requests:
- Request Forms received by the indicated due date will be processed prior to the beginning of the semester. Late requests will be processed in the order in which they are received.
- Request Forms received after the start of the semester will be processed within seven (7) working days.
Utilizing SSD Authorizations For Academic Accommodation As Tools for Effective Self-Advocacy
Binghamton University is committed to equal access for all qualified students and to the provision of academic accommodations that ensure an equal playing field for students with and without disabilities within the parameters of established academic standards. The effective implementation of appropriate academic accommodations requires active involvement and collaboration by the students needing them and the faculty responsible for teaching their classes.
As a student who has received SSD Authorizations for Academic Accommodation for one or more of your courses, you are responsible for sharing them with your professors and for meeting with them to clarify your mutually agreed-upon implementation responsibilities. We strongly recommend that you:
- Pick up the Accommodation Authorizations you requested from SSD as soon as they are available
- Personally deliver the Authorizations to your professors and schedule appointments with them early in the semester to review course expectations, discuss your needs, and clarify accommodation arrangements. Do not wait until your first exam.
- During your scheduled appointment with your professor:
- Demonstrate your interest in the course.
- Openly and knowledgeably discuss your disability-related needs and the accommodations listed in the Accommodation Authorization from SSD.
- Address faculty questions or concerns honestly and openly, with as much information as you are comfortable sharing. Try hard not to react defensively, remembering that the vast majority of professors have a genuine interest in understanding your needs and in enabling you to participate on an equal basis with your class colleagues.
- Ask the professors about procedures and timelines for ensuring the implementation of your academic accommodations. Be polite but persistent in arriving at a clear understanding regarding your mutual responsibilities for implementation.
- If you are unable to arrive at a satisfactory agreement regarding accommodations and implementation responsibilities, request that the professor call the SSD Director or Learning Disabilities Specialist -- and provide him or her with our phone number (x72686). Then call or come by the office to let us know you need assistance resolving the situation.
- If your accommodations include any testing modifications (e.g. extended time, separate testing space, etc.) you MUST contact your professor one week before scheduled exams in order to receive these accommodations. Professors are NOT required to provide for accommodations without sufficient advance notice.
- During your follow-up conversations, you should ask the professors to review and confirm for you how your accommodations will be provided and whether you need to take any actions other than arriving at the agreed-upon times and locations.
- If you have any concerns or would like to practice your self-advocacy approach before making appointments with your professors, we encourage you to make an appointment with the SSD Director or Learning Disabilities Specialist. We are happy to work with you and support you in all your academic endeavors.