FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is a disability?
An individual with a disability is any person who:
1. Has a physical, mental or emotional impairment, that substantially or materially limits one or more of their major life activities;
2. Has a record of such an impairment;
3. Is regarded as having such an impairment.
What are reasonable accommodations?
Reasonable accommodations are modifications or supports that give a student with a disability an equal opportunity to participate and benefit from college. Accommodations are adjustments to how things are usually done. The purpose of effective accommodations is to increase a student’s chances for success.
Disability Services works with students with disabilities and HTC officials to answer questions about the college's compliance with disability laws, such as what is considered a reasonable accommodation.
Reasonable accommodations can be provided in various ways. The following are brief descriptions and examples of the most common categories of accommodations that permit a qualified student with a disability to effectively participate in the educational process.
1. Changes to a classroom environment or task; examples might include:
- extended time for an exam,
- alternate location for an exam,
- materials in alternate formats such as large print, audio tape or computer disk.
2. Removal of architectural barriers; examples might include:
- adapting a classroom to meet the needs of a student who uses a wheelchair.
3. Modifications to policies, practices or procedures.
- considered on a case-by-case basis
4. Provision of auxiliary aids and services; examples might include:
- providing a sign language interpreter
- providing a note taker or scribe
In accordance with the law, there are some modifications that HTC does not provide as a reasonable accommodation. Examples include:
- personal devices such as wheelchairs, or glasses
- personal services, such as private tutoring or personal attendants (Note: Tutoring services are available to all registered students in the campus Learning Resource Centers.)
- modifications that lower or change course standards or program standards
- modifications that would change the essence of a program, such as allowing a student in an auto mechanics program to take a written test on repairing an engine instead of actually repairing an engine or allowing a student in a public speaking class to substitute a written paper for an oral presentation
- Services that are unduly burdensome, administratively or financially.
How do I request a reasonable accommodation?
To receive a reasonable accommodation you, the student, must first request the accommodation and provide documentation of the disability. The Disability Services office is the designated office to certify eligibility for disability services, determine accommodations, and maintain documentation separate from other college records. In general, the college will not act on its own to provide an accommodation to a student unless or until one is requested.
Disability Services will generally require documentation of your disability by the appropriate licensed professional in order to evaluate a request for a reasonable accommodation. Documentation should reflect the nature of your disability and how it affects you in an academic setting. The law allows the college to request recent documentation. If the disability has changed or fluctuates in intensity, then an up-to-date evaluation of the condition may be requested to determine reasonable accommodations.
Accommodations are arranged each term and students need to communicate with their Disability Services Coordinator prior to or at the beginning of each term to arrange for academic accommodations.
What if I have a concern about my accommodations or access to programs, services, or activities?
At Hennepin Technical College, you are responsible for notifying the Disability Services office if the accommodations that have been provided do not meet your needs. If you have attempted to resolve issues related to your accommodations but you feel that HTC has failed to meet your needs, you may file a complaint. Complaints generally are about issues such as:
- accommodations provided
- timely implementation of accommodations
- access to buildings
- access to information
Complaints are treated seriously at HTC and it has processes in place to investigate and help resolve them. Complaints should be filed in a timely manner and are usually, but do not need to be, submitted in written form.
The complaint process is as follows:
1. Talk to the Disability Services Coordinator on your campus about your concern. Usually a complaint can be resolved at this informal level.
2. File a grievance using the procedure found in the Student Handbook. The college’s ADA Compliance Officer, Sharon Mohr, 763-488-2525, will work with you to resolve your complaint.
3. File a complaint directly with the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights by calling 1-800-421-3481 or the Minnesota Department of Human Rights by calling 1-651-296-5663 (Voice) or 1-651-296-1283 (TTY).
If you believe you have been discriminated against or harassed because of your disability you may bring a complaint under the MnSCU Board Policy 1.B.1. Nondiscrimination in Employment and Educational Opportunity. To do so, contact Sharon Mohr, ADA Compliance Officer, 763-488-2525.
What services are available for Deaf or hard of hearing students?
The Deaf and Hard of Hearing Student Services Program was established at Hennepin Technical College in 1975. Since then, we have welcomed Deaf and hard of hearing students from all over America to enroll in our degree, diploma and certificate programs. Knowledgeable staff interpreters provide communication access to our 40 different programs of study. Full time tutors are available to help with student course work. Our entire faculty, staff and administration is dedicated to helping students achieve their educational goals.
We look forward to your enrollment and are ready to help with each step of your educational process. From career counseling to financial aid assistance, to job placement, we are here for you. Please call us today to get your career started.
(763) 488-2571 TTY
(763) 488-2467 Voice
Assistive Devices Available
- TTY’s Amplified Phones
- Visual Alarm Systems TypeWell (speech to printed text)
- Internet Access Closed Captioning System
How is a college or university different from high school?
College life poses different challenges for students with disabilities. When students enroll in college, they are considered responsible adults by faculty and staff. The expectation is that they will assume responsibilities for meeting their class requirements.
This added responsibility is coupled with a change in environment. High school is a teaching environment in which students acquire knowledge and skills. College is a learning environment in which students take responsibility for thinking through and applying what they have learned.
Another student responsibility is that of self-advocacy. Students must become adept at realistically assessing and understanding their strengths, weaknesses, needs, and preferences. Also, they must become experts at communicating this information to other adults including instructors and service providers. Although services will be available to students through an office specializing in services to students with disabilities, students will be responsible for seeking these services and supports. Good communication skills and knowledge about oneself become crucial to success in college.
Understanding some of the important differences allows parents to help their son or daughter achieve a smoother transition.
High School College School 6 hours per day, 5 days per week Students are typically in class 12-18 hours per week, depending on course load The school year is about 9 months long The academic year is two 16-week semesters Time is structured by others, and teachers closely monitor student’s attendance Students arrange their own schedule with an advisor or counselor and manage their own time Students are not responsible for knowing what it takes to graduate Students are expected to know the graduation requirements for their particular program Teachers check students completed homework Instructors don’t always check student’s homework Teachers might remind students of missed work and often provide students with information they missed when they were absent Instructors don’t remind students of missed work, and they expect students to get notes from classmates for any classes they’ve missed Case manager acts as advocate Students must advocate for themselves Services result from Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) Services are designed on class by class basis and individual needs Regular parent contact Parent contact limited by privacy laws High Schools are required to identify students with Disabilities and determine what is needed for the student to be successful Colleges are restricted from seeking out students with disabilities due to privacy laws Educational and Psychological testing is provided Students are responsible for providing documentation to the college Entitlement law (IDEA) Civil Rights - Anti-discrimination law (ADA, Rehabilitation Act, Section 504 and the MN Human Rights Act)
How can I help my son or daughter have a successful college or university experience?
As first-year students arrive at a college or university and begin to venture forth they experience different reactions and thoughts. Some students will adjust to life with little difficulty, while others may find that the transition stretches beyond the first year. Parents can help by understanding the developmental process that their students will journey through as they enter a college or university and recognize that this process is part of the higher education learning environment.
- Upon arrival, many students enjoy a period where the newness and excitement leads to strong positive feelings about college life.
- A few weeks into the semester, students begin to realize that higher education is not all glamour and fun – there is hard work, and there can be frustration and disappointment as well. Students may receive their first low grades.
- About mid-semester, students may begin wondering if college life is better at another school. They might believe that transferring to another institution will solve the problems they are experiencing. Or they may wonder if they would be better off out in the work world.
If students have left home to go to school, they may learn that things at home have changed. Life has gone on without them. At the same time, first year students learn that they have changed, and because of this, their relationships with family and high school friends may be different from what they remember. Like college, home suddenly feels like a new and changing place.
As students progress through the semester they refine their academic and study skills, engage in their first deep conversations with classmates and enjoy expanding their circle of friends. It is often at this time that true intellectual fulfillment begins and meaningful relationships with classmates and faculty develop.
With the end of the semester near, students face large amounts of work. No matter how well students have been doing academically and socially, they may have anxiety about whether they will survive the papers and exams and if they will actually make it to the second semester. They may question again whether they really belong in college.
Sometime during the second semester, most students begin to view college as a total experience. They come to see the classes, casual discussions with new friends, parties, and other elements of their college life are related and part of an interrelated whole. First year students come to understand that the choices and commitment that they make have a tremendous impact on the shape of their college experience and future.
As a parent, what information is available to me from my son or daughter’s educational records?
In general, under federal and state privacy laws, students at colleges or universities have the legal right to control access to information about themselves. Some information called “directory data” is public and available to anyone, even parents. Almost all other information such as grades or class schedules is private and, in most cases, a student’s written authorization is required to release to a third party private information held by a college or university.
Parents are legally considered to be “third parties” and need their child’s written permission to access private data about them.
Last updated by admin : 2015-02-22 12:30:08