Learning Disability Assessments
Learning Disabilities / ADHD at College
Almost every college and university in the country has a Center for Students with Learning Disabilities with a mandate to help students with Learning Disabilities or Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder succeed in a college setting.
If you or your child have been diagnosed with a learning disability or ADHD, you may be very familiar with, and exhausted by, the Individual Education Plan (IEP) and 504 process of securing services through the public school system. The good news is that at most colleges, accessing accommodations is much easier and more straightforward.
To access accommodations at college, contact the academic dean’s office and let them know you need accommodations. They will typically refer you to their Learning Disabilities Center.
Each center has its own set of requirements for accepting students into their program. Typically, universities will require a recent educational or neuropsychological assessment to document the presence of a disability. If your child has not had an evaluation recently, you may need to have an updated evaluation completed. To avoid a gap in services, this should be done prior to beginning the freshman semester. Some colleges will allow provisional accommodations while students are undergoing an evaluation.
Typical college level accommodations include:
- A note taker, or access to professors’ notes to follow along with during lecture time.
- Books on iPod. (All textbooks and assigned literature are available as downloads on iPods. For students with reading disabilities this is invaluable).
- Extended time for tests.
- Alternative format tests (for example, fill in the blank rather than multiple choice).
- Access to writing tutors or drop-in writing labs.
- Waiver of mathematics or foreign language requirements.
Some colleges also have specific programs to assist students with organization and time management, especially helpful to the ADHD student.
Parents may think their child that got in to an Ivy League school, but is doing poorly, has to be pulled out of college. Yet if they were to receive an evaluation that shows some type of disability, there are services at literally every college, from Bunker Hill College to Harvard.
Contact Dr. Postal
Karen Spangenberg Postal, Ph.D, ABPP-CN
451 Andover Street, Suite 190B
North Andover, MA 01845
(978) 475-2025 (telephone)
(978) 475-1661 (fax)