When you hear the term “disability”, what images come to mind? Quite often, we think of people with obvious physical disabilities. In actuality, the majority of students at Boise State who request accommodations through the Educational Access Center (EAC) have “hidden” disabilities such as anxiety, depression, or ADHD. Others have temporary disabilities such as a broken arm from a fall while skiing, newly diagnosed medical conditions, or learning disabilities.
When Access Coordinators in the EAC work with students to determine reasonable and appropriate accommodations, they focus on the barriers students face as a result of their diagnosis rather than the disability itself. Together, they explore how their diagnosis impacts their campus experience, including academic goals, strengths, and barriers. Accommodations are based on personalized conversations and review of documentation.
Technology provides access for many students in the following ways:
- Computerized pens make note taking more accessible
- Text-to-speech software reads books and exams to students with print disabilities
- Speech-to-text software helps students with limited mobility or difficulty organizing thoughts write papers
- Apps help students get organized and improve time management
For students who are transitioning from services in the K-12 system or adjusting to a new diagnosis, the EAC has Social Work interns who can provide academic and executive functioning coaching. Interns work with students to develop college-level study and organizational skills, find additional campus resources, and provide a student perspective on adjusting to Boise State.
Your role as a parent will shift from a position where you may have advocated for your child’s accommodations in K-12. Now that they are in college, your role is to offer encouragement and support so that they can learn to become their own advocate.