Parents and Family Guide
What does the Center for Disability Resources (CDR) do?
The Center for Disability Resources facilitates equal access for students with disabilities by coordinating accommodations and support services. The CDR works with graduate and undergraduate students with various types of disabilities including learning, physical, hearing, visual, psychological, and chronic medical conditions.
How do I register with the CDR?
Registration includes submission of both the Application for Accommodations and Services and disability documentation (see general guidelines and specific guidelines). There are separate application forms for undergraduate and graduate students. (See Undergraduate Application for Accommodations & Services(PDF) and Graduate Application for Accommodations & Services(PDF)) After review of a student's application and relevant documentation, the CDR will coordinate services and accommodations based on eligibility. The student will receive a letter indicating specific accommodations they are eligible to receive. In addition, an appointment will be set up for an orientation session. The CDR works with students with various types of disabilities including learning, physical, hearing, visual, psychological, and chronic medical conditions.
- Undergraduate Student Registration
- Graduate Student Registration
How do high school services differ from college disability services?
The following information is geared primarily toward families of undergraduate students. While much of the information is still relevant, please contact the CDR for further information on how you can support your graduate student.
The Center for Disability Resources (CDR) is available to speak with you and your student about the important differences between high school and college with respect to services for students with disabilities. Understanding these differences will help to ensure a smooth transition period for both you and your student. Below we have provided a summary that highlights these differences. We have also included information that is specific to our program for students with disabilities.
In high school, teachers or other school personnel identified students who were in need of services, provided free assessments, and developed Individualized Educational Plans (IEP's) based on these assessments. These plans may have included a modified curriculum, specialized instruction, tutoring, academic accommodations, and other individualized services.
In contrast, post-secondary education requires students with disabilities to be much more self-directed about gaining access to the key accommodations they need. While K-12's emphasis is on ensuring students' success, post-secondary disability services is focused upon "leveling the playing field" for students with disabilities so that they have equal opportunity and equal access. With these important distinctions in mind, the following represent key features of the Center for Disability Resources at Illinois Institute of Technology.
- Students must self identify to the CDR to request accommodations.
- Students also must provide reasonable accommodations of their condition/disability. Colleges are not responsible for assessing or determining students' disability status or related needs. Colleges also have the right to set reasonable standards regarding the type of documentation needed / required and can further require that such documentation be current.
- Higher education institutions, including Illinois Institute of Technology, review students' documentation and determine their disability-related needs for academic adjustments and reasonable accommodations.
- Reasonable accommodations coordinated by the CDR for eligible students include extended time on exams, note taking services, textbooks and other materials in an alternate format, sign language interpretation, and transcription services.
- Students are expected to follow the established procedures for receiving reasonable accommodations in order to maintain their eligibility for such accommodations.
- The CDR consults with faculty and/or students' academic programs to ensure that accommodations do not modify the fundamental nature of these programs.
Please note: Individualized services and tutoring are not considered reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the two laws which govern the provision of accommodations at the college level.
Please consult the links below for a more comprehensive overview of the differences between high school disability services and college disability services.
Going to College - http://www.going-to-college.org/
This website is full of information for students and parents to assist with the transition from high school to college.
Transition to College - http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/transition.html
This link from the Office for Civil Rights is a good place to start for answers to questions about the legal differences between high school disability services and college disability services.
Information for Parents - http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/letters/parent-20070316.html
This link from the Office for Civil Rights provides information about how parents can assist their child with the transition to college.
The CDR looks forward to working with your student, as he/she becomes a part of the exciting IIT community. We are here to support your student by providing appropriate, reasonable accommodations that facilitate academic and physical access to IIT's programs and activities. If you have any questions, please contact us.
What qualifies as a disability?
Disability is defined as a physical or mental impairment, which substantially limits one or more of an individual's major life activities. This is typically supported by a formal record of the impairment. "Impairment" is defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Where is the CDR located and what are its office hours?
CDR Location and Office Hours
IIT Center for Disability Resources
3105 S. Dearborn Street - LS 252
Chicago, Illinois 60616