The DSO staff is committed and ready to assist students with disabilities in reaching their academic goals.
At the beginning of each semester, the DSO (Disability Services Office) will provide letters addressed to your professors outlining your approved accommodations. Click here to view a sample letter of accommodation.
To implement your academic accommodations it is your responsibility to:
- Pick up your accommodation letters in the DSO each semester (usually the second week of class) and hand deliver your letters to your professors during their office hours. Office location and hours can be found on your course syllabus which will be distributed on the first day of class.
- Discuss your accommodation needs and arrangements with your Professor. Discuss how, where and when accommodations will be implemented.
- If you would like your professors to know about your need for accommodations, prior to the start of the semester, you may contact them by email to introduce yourself. Email addresses for your professors can be found in MyKU. Click here for a sample introductory email.
Contact the DSO immediately if you have difficulty obtaining your accommodations, need help self-advocating or communicating your needs to your professors.
Academic accommodations are meant to provide the student with equal access without fundamentally altering the essential elements of a course or degree program. Each semester, you will need to implement/request your academic accommodations by delivering your accommodations letters and discussing your needs with your professors. While you may request accommodations at any time during the semester, you are strongly encouraged to request them as early as possible. It is important to note that under the ADA, accommodations are not provided retroactively.
Click here for more comprehensive information on accommodations.
Self-Advocacy is a key component to success in college. As a student registered with disability services it will be your responsibility to discuss your accommodations with university faculty and staff. While there is no need to disclose the nature of your disability, understanding your disability and its impact on how you live, learn and work will provide the confidence to communicate your needs to others.
Think about the following questions:
- What is my disability? How does it impact my ability to learn, socialize, work and study?
- What are my needs and how can my professors and university staff help me?
- What are my strengths and weaknesses?
- What strategies do I use and how do I plan to be actively involved in the learning process and campus community?
Click here for more tips for communicating with your Professors. If you have difficulty explaining what your needs are and why you need accommodations, please seek assistance by scheduling an appointment with a staff member in the DSO.
Advising and Course Selection
Your Faculty Advisor (Academic Advisor) is a faculty member in your department/major and is a good source for information about courses, programs and resources at KU. As a student with disabilities, it may be helpful to discuss your accommodations with your Advisor so you can develop an effective strategy for taking your courses (number of credits, teaching environment- online, hybrid, classroom and course sequencing). The name of your Faculty Advisor is listed on MyKU.
While you are encouraged to meet with your Faculty Advisor throughout the semester, you will be required to schedule an appointment with your Advisor for course selection each semester. Watch your KU email account for information on Advising and Course Registration. This email is sent usually in October and March and explains the process for advising and registration.
Advocacy and Student Groups
Getting involved in student organizations and campus life is important in adjusting to campus life. KU has over 150 organizations, many of which center on advocacy activities. Please visit the KUnited website to learn more.
Delta Alpha Pi International Honor Society is an honor society for students with disabilities. Members of Delta Alpha Pi serve as role models for other students with disabilities and have the opportunity to participate in mentoring and awareness programs and complete other campus service projects. Please click here for more information about Delta Alpha Pi.
Testing Accommodations (EST-Praxis, Pearson- PECT, GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT)
Students who are majoring in education and those who are considering graduate/professional school are often required to take standardized tests such as the Praxis or GRE. Students with disabilities can request testing accommodations through the test provider/vendor. Please be aware that updated documentation of your disability may be required and the approval process may take up to 6-8 weeks. The DSO staff is available to meet with students to assist with the process of requesting test accommodations.
Safety and Evacuation Procedures
Students with disabilities have the responsibility to seek out and develop a personal support network to assist them in case of emergencies and evacuations. You are encouraged to add the KU Public Safety emergency telephone number to your phone contacts (610-683-4001) and keep your phone with you at all times. Review the Guidelines for Emergency Building Evacuation for Persons with Disabilities.
Career Development, Internship and Professional Employment
Students are encouraged to meet with the Career Development Center staff early in college to explore options, learn about opportunities for experiential learning (part-time and seasonal jobs related to your field of study, job shadowing and internships), professional employment, and how and when to discuss your need for accommodations in the workplace. More information about the Career Development Center.
Selected career sites specifically for individuals with disabilities.
Student Rights and Responsibilities
The rights and responsibilities of students with disabilities are delineated by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the ADAAA of 2008, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Kutztown University is committed to protecting and ensuring the rights of students with disabilities. Information on student rights and responsibilities.