Resources For Students
FAQs From Students
Who do I contact about my disability?
VCU provides services for students with disabilities on both the Monroe Park and MCV Campus. Please contact the appropriate coordinator of the Disability Support Services (DSS) Office for additional information about eligibility of services and accommodations:
Monroe Park Campus
907 Floyd Ave., Room 102
(804) 828–2253 VOICE/TTY – (804) 828–1944 FAX
VMI Building, 1000 East Marshall Street, Room 301
(804) 828–9782 VOICE – (804) 828–4608 TTYB
(804) 828–4609 FAX
Who is eligible to receive services from the Disability Support Services (DSS) Office?
A disability is defined as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, such as caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working.
In order to determine if you are eligible, please contact the DSS Office to set up a meeting and to discuss your disability needs. You may be required to provide documentation of your disability to the DSS Coordinator.
Will the services that VCU provides to students with disabilities cost me anything?
The Disability Support Services (DSS) Office provides services to qualified VCU students with disabilities at no cost.
What is VCU's policy on attendance for students with disabilities?
The Disability Support Services Office does not determine course attendance policies at VCU. University departments or faculty are responsible for setting attendance policies as well as policies on make–up work and missed quizzes and exams.
What is the Disability Support Services (DSS) Office?
The DSS Office provides services and supports for VCU students with disabilities in order for these students to have equal opportunities to benefit from all programs, services and activities offered at VCU. The Office of Disability
Support Services offers the following services:
- Provides support services to students with disabilities, including but not limited to advocacy, adapted materials, alternative testing, and career advising.
- Makes recommendations for program accommodations in accordance with recent documentation.
- Assists the University in complying with the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended.
- Provides liaison activities between faculty and students with disabilities.
- Maintains and protects the confidentiality of student records as required by law and university policy.
- Provides technical assistance to University departments.
- Serves as an information and referral service on disability related issues by providing current and accurate information regarding disability related products, programs and services to current students, prospective students, faculty and staff.
- Consults with public school special education personnel, rehabilitation or high school counselors, parents and prospective students concerning the University's services for students with disabilities.
- Provides an open and welcoming atmosphere by creating a place for students to meet, share, study, organize and obtain information related to disability issues and opportunities.
The Office of Disability Support Services will not:
- Perform psycho–educational diagnostic assessments.
- Offer self–contained classes or training programs for students with learning disabilities.
- Ask faculty to compromise the quality of instruction or evaluation, or sacrifice class standards.
- Provide persons with disabilities personal devices or assistance for personal use. This includes but is not limited to wheelchairs, eye glasses, hearing aids, transportation, personal assistance for eating, dressing or other personal services or readers or scribes for personal use.
What type of documentation do I need to provide to the Coordinator of the DSS Office?
Students with visible physical impairments may be required to present reports from physicians or other state or local agencies for official identification and determination of appropriate academic adjustments.
Students with hidden disabilities such as learning disabilities or mental health impairments may be required to present extensive and current documentation of their disability to the Coordinator for official identification. Examples of documentation could include psychiatric reports, psychological reports and/or educational assessments. All documentation provided to the DSS Office needs to include:
- Name, title and professional credentials of the evaluator as well as the area of specialization, employment and state/ province in which the individual practices should be clearly stated in the documentation.
- All reports should be on letterhead, typed, dated, signed and otherwise legible.
- The evaluator should have training and experience with adolescent/adult populations. A school plan such as an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or 504 Plan is insufficient documentation, but these plans can be included as part of a more comprehensive assessment battery. For more information about specific documentation requirements, please refer to the Documentation Requirements section of this handbook.
Who will know about my disability?
Disability documentation is considered confidential information and does not become part of a student's academic transcript. All disability information is housed in the DSS Office. Disability documentation will be released only in accordance with the law, and VCU policies and procedures. Student's grades, transcripts and other academic information are also confidential and will be released only in accordance with the law, and VCU policies and procedures. Faculty and staff have no authority to view disability documentation or have any information concerning a student's disability without a legitimate educational need to know. It is the students' responsibility to supply any agencies or individuals who may be sponsoring them with copies of their grade reports and/or other academic information.
When should I tell the University that I have a disability?
It is your decision whether or not to notify the University that you have a disability. You can disclose your disability to the appropriate DSS Coordinator at anytime during your enrollment at VCU. Although you can disclose your disability at any time, it is highly recommended that you disclose your disability as soon as possible in order to receive appropriate accommodations and services in order to have equal opportunities to benefit from all programs, services and activities offered at VCU.
What type of accommodations can VCU offer to students with disabilities?
The Coordinator of Disability Support Services will provide assistance to insure access to classes, programs and activities as necessary. Academic accommodations are determined on a case–by–case basis. Examples are:
- Priority registration
- Library assistance
- Classroom accessibility
- Textbooks in alternate
- Access to wheelchair lifts format
- Oral/Sign language interpreters
- Note takers
- Exam modifications
- Auxiliary aids
What services are available to students with disabilities at VCU?
VCU provides many services to students with or without disabilities to assist them in their academic journey. Students can access these services regardless of disclosing their disability. A more detailed description of each service is listed in the Campus and Community Service section of the University Resource Guide, which is published by the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services, and on the Professional Development Academy web site "Creating a Welcoming Campus for Students with Disabilities" at: www.students.vcu.edu/pda
Some of the services are provided below:
- Academic and Career Exploration – Individualized Techniques (ACE–IT!)
- Student Academic Support Services (MCV Campus)
- Career Connections for Students with Disabilities
- Math Lab
- University Counseling Services
- Academic Success Program
- University Career Center
- College Success Program
- Writing Center
Support Students with Disabilities at VCU
We know budgets are tight, but the time is right to support students with disabilities at this web site. Your wonderful donation can provide information, endow student scholarships or fund staff publications. Our students are great and they can’t wait to reach their potential and graduate. Donated dollars will help develop our scholars and provide a platform for the student of tomorrow.
To make your gift to Disability Support Services, please complete and submit this form. You will receive an acknowledgment of your gift by email. If you have any problems or questions, please email email@example.com. Thank you!
Disability Support Services
Monroe Park Campus
907 Floyd Ave.
Voice/TTY: (804) 828-2253
Fax: (804) 828-1944
Office of Health Career/Education and Special Services for Students
VCU Medical Center Campus
1000 E. Marshall St.
Phone: (804) 828-9782
TTY: (804) 828-4608
Fax: (804) 828-4609