Accessible Education Services
Other Important Information
What Are Accessibility Services For Students?
We provide services, advocacy, and support to students with documented disabilities.
Having the educational course accommodations you need is an important part of learning and education. Students with disabilities who attend Southwestern Oregon Community College have the option of accessing course accommodations. Course accommodations vary and are individually tailored to meet the person’s academic needs. Examples of academic accommodations include extra time for quizzes and exams, separate testing area, note taker, copies of a power point or lecture, recording a lecture, and much more. The more you know about what you need in relation to the disability and educational needs, the more informed and meaningful the conversation about accommodations feels.
People interested in accessing and implementing course accommodations at Southwestern have three steps they are asked to complete prior to receiving educational accommodations.
The steps to get connected to course accommodations include:
- Filling out the Accessible Education Services Application
- Providing the Accessible Education Office with documentation about the qualifying disability. If you are in need of assistance regarding the type of documentation needed, please contact the Accessible Education Office.
- Meet with the Director of Accessible Education about the requested course accommodations and the accommodation process.
Following the course accommodation approval process, students will receive an accommodation sheet with those they are eligible for in their classes. While the Accessible Education Services office notifies faculty of the course accommodations, students are encouraged to present their faculty with the accommodation sheet as a part of the process. By doing this one step, you are letting faculty know you want to use these accommodations in their class.
What Services Are Available To Students?
- Reader for tests and exams
- Alternative testing setting and extended test time
- Memory aid
- Alternate format for books
- Other exam modifications
- Extended time on homework
- Sign language interpreter
- Other reasonable academic accommodations will be provided on a case-by-case basis
What Do I Do If I Think I Need Services?
If you have questions about academic accommodations, please contact our office at 541-888-1578. You can schedule a meeting with the Director of Accessible Education to discuss the documentation process, services, your educational goals, and the accommodation process. You and the Accessible Education Services office will work together to determine which services are appropriate for you.
Request For Accommodation
Reasonable And Appropriate Accommodation
Reasonable and appropriate accommodations include a change or modification that enables a student with a disability to enjoy equal opportunity and/or access to college facilities, programs, and activities, provided a fundamental alteration would not result from the modification.
Reasonable accommodations are required for students with known disabilities. Southwestern is not required to provide “best” or “most desired” accommodation but rather a reasonable accommodation sufficient to meet accessibility needs.
Please complete the Accessible Education Services Application to identify yourself if you have a disability which might warrant accommodations while you are attending Southwestern. The College is firmly committed to providing reasonable accommodations to those with properly documented needs to ensure equal access to all programs.
If you have a learning disability, a visual, hearing or mobility impairment, or a physical, mental health, or other invisible condition, you are encouraged to complete this form. Whether or not you are eligible for an accommodation, your completion of this form will assist the College in responding to your needs.
If you are requesting accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and/or section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; you must provide documentation of the existence of a disability which substantially limits a major life activity.
We are currently reviewing the Complaint Process and will be updating this information.
If you are a student, employee or a member of the public with a disability and have a complaint related to the disability, you may fill out the Complaint Reporting Form.
More information can be found here:
College Complaint and Investigation – Students or Community Member
Faculty and Staff Conduct Complaint and Investigation
Southwestern Oregon Community College (SWOCC) is committed to serving and supporting people who require the use of service animals on campus.
Under the ADA, a service animal is defined as a dog or miniature horse, that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities (includes physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability.) The task(s) performed by the animal must be directly related to the person’s disability.
Except in rare circumstances, service animals are allowed access to all areas of SWOCC’s campuses that are open to the public and students. Service animals do not need an accommodation or be affiliated with the Accessible Education Services office.
Service Animal Handler’s Responsibilities:
SWOCC is not responsible for the care or supervision of service animals.
- Service animals must be accompanied and under leash or voice control at all times.
- The handler is responsible for the behavior of their service animal. Unacceptable behaviors such as uncontrolled barking, jumping, sniffing, growling, and whining, not related to the service the animal is providing are prohibited.
- The handler is responsible for feeding, walking, and cleaning up after their service animal whenever the animal is on campus.
- The handler must be compliant with any laws pertaining to animal vaccinations, licensure, ID tags, etc., that are mandated by State and/or local ordinances.
- Identification is not required, but it is recommended that a service animal wear recognizable identification. This will help others know that the animal is working and not a pet.
SWOCC may restrict, even exclude, a service animal in certain instances such as:
- The service animal is out of control and the handler has not made effective actions to control it.
- The service animal is not housebroken.
- The service animal is a direct threat to the health and safety of others.
If a service animal is restricted or becomes excluded from SWOCC’s campuses, SWOCC gives the handler the option of continuing to enjoy its programs and servicese without having the service animal on the premises.
Faculty & Staff Guidance:
Faculty and staff may not inquire about a person’s disability, but when it is not obvious what service an animal provides, staff and faculty may ask two questions:
- Is the dog a service animal required because of a disability?
- What work or task has the dog been trained to perform?
Public Etiquette Towards Service Animals:
- Always speak to the handler, not to the service animal.
- Do not ask personal questions about the handler’s disability.
- Do not pet a service animal. It distracts them from the task at hand, and service animals may be protective.
- Do not feed the service animal.
- Do not separate or attempt to separate a partner/handler from their service animal.
- Do not hesitate to ask the handler if they would like assistance if the team seems confused about a direction to turn, an accessible entrance, entrance to an elevator, etc.
- Do not draw unnecessary attention to a service team.
Self-Advocacy And Responsibility
Self-advocacy is an essential part of living with a disability. People come to college with varying degrees and experience in learning how to self-advocate. Self-advocacy is also an important part of the course accommodation process. Students with disabilities can enhance their self-advocacy skills by completing the Accessible Education Services process so they can receive course accommodations in their classes. An important component of this process is for students to let their instructors know they want to use their approved accommodations. While the Accessible Education Services office notifies a student’s instructors of the approved accommodations, it is also helpful for the student to let their instructors know they want to use them. By letting your instructors hear from you that you want to use the approved course accommodations, you are helping them help you.
- Filling out an application for Accessible Education Services.
- Bringing proper documentation to the Accessible Education Services office to verify the disability as well as background information to help in planning for appropriate support and accommodations.
- Contacting Accessible Education Services if you have questions about the documentation needed or how to obtain it.
- Knowing one’s specific needs as they relate to the disability.
- Asking for help at the beginning of the quarter and not after the student is failing.
- Letting the professor know in advance the kind of accommodations needed to meet academic needs. This includes showing faculty the Approved Accommodation sheet.
- Understanding that the student is responsible for choosing to learn or not.
- Using an assertive approach to ask for needed help. This means knowing what their needs are, being respectful and polite, and being patient with other people who are trying to understand and help.
- To be aware of the laws that provide for students with disabilities in postsecondary schools.
- To provide reasonable accommodations to students with documented disabilities, as indicated by the Accessible Education Services office.
- To contact the Accessible Education Services office if they have questions about how to provide a requested accommodation or questions related to the accommodation process.
- To provide a positive environment where students are encouraged to self-advocate.
Student Resources & Funding Opportunities
This section provides links to valuable resources. Information is provided to help students learn about potential grants, scholarships and funding opportunities, computer software, resources and content that may be of use to students with disabilities, veterans, and post-secondary transition.
The following link can be useful for students, faculty, and administrators. It provides access to areas such as inclusive educational practices, universal design, accessibility, accessible distance learning, assistive technology, and more. Check it and explore what it has to offer!
Students with disabilities wanting to know more about career and job opportunities may review this link.
Blanche Fischer Foundation
The Blanche Fischer Foundation is a private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) charitable organization founded through a trust established by the late Blanche Fischer, a native of Long Creek and long-time resident and benefactor of Lincoln City, Oregon.
The Foundation makes direct grants on behalf of Oregonians with physical disabilities. The aid may relate directly to the disability or toward fostering personal independence.
The Foundation was created in 1981 and since then it’s estimated that they have granted $1.5 million in individual grants to people with physical disabilities in Oregon. The average grant award is $600.
Applicants need to meet three criteria:
- Must be an Oregon resident
- Must have a disability of a physical nature
- Must demonstrate financial need
The application is available at their website, www.bff.org. It is also available via the US mail. Applications are mailed the same day they’re requested. Please call 503-246-4941 with any questions.
Screen Readers And Software
This section provides several links to learn more about assistive technology options such as screen readers and software that may be helpful to students.
- Demo of JAWS – Demo, free trial to try before you buy.
- NaturalReader – Demo, free trial to try before you buy.
- Ghost Reader for Mac – Free reader software for Mac.
- AdapTech Research Network – Updated database of free or inexpensive Computer Technologies for both windows and MAC, OS systems.
Transition From High School To College
Students with Disabilities Preparing for Postsecondary Education – Know your rights and responsibilities.
Scholarships, Grants, And Resources
Students looking for scholarships, grants, and resources related to living with a disability may find the following links helpful. Some links have scholarship and grant information and to find them, you may need to perform the search function. In addition, some websites list links to several other scholarship and funding opportunities. Other sites provide useful disability resource information.
- 1800Wheelchair Scholarship
- American Council of the Blind
- American Foundation for the Blind
- American Speech Language Hearing Foundation
- Association for the Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind And Visual Impaired
- Association of Blind Citizens
- Blind Veterans Association
- Financial Aid for Eye Care
- Cystic Fibrosis Scholarship
- College Scholarships for Disabilities
- College Funding Strategies for Students with Disabilities
- Helen Keller Foundation
- Immune Deficiency Foundation
- Lighthouse Guild
- The Center for Reintegration
- Mobility International
- Multiple Sclerosis Foundation
- Muscular Dystrophy Foundation
- National Center for Learning Disabilities
- National Federation of the Blind
- The Orthotic and Prosthetic Activities Foundation
- Pilot Dogs
- Spina Bifada Association
- The Travis Roy Foundation
- United Cerebral Palsy
Communication and Interaction Tips
Communication and interacting with people is an important aspect of college. Two videos are provided to improve your understanding of ways to improve your communication and interactions with individuals with disabilities.
Improving Customer Service
Sensitivity Training for Interacting with Persons with Disabilities