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Office of Student Accessibility

DeSales is committed to ensuring equal access to students with disabilities in the participation of the full educational experience. Our desire is to create a culture of openness and equity.

The Office of Student Accessibility focuses on:

  • Complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), all subsequent amendments, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and all other pertinent guidelines and case law.
  • Instituting policies and procedures have been developed to provide students with as much independence as possible and to promote self-advocacy;
  • Promoting strategies and sessions to effectively transition into the higher education environment; including executive functioning skills, time management, and organizational skills, study skills, note-taking skills, and appropriate coping strategies;
  • Working closely with students who self-identify in order to ensure equal access to University programs, services, and activities. 
In addition to some general information about the OSA, this video playlist provides several ways of finding your way to our office in Dooling Hall.

Who we support

In accordance with federal law, a “person with a disability” is defined as a person who has or is regarded as having any mental or physical condition that substantially impairs or restricts one or more major life activities such as performing normal tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working.

This includes, but is not limited to such disabling conditions as:

  • learning disabilities
  • psychological/emotional disabilities
  • speech and/or hearing impairment
  • dietary needs
  • injury rehabilitation
  • mobility impairment
  • visual impairment

The ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) requires that accommodations be developed on a case-by-case basis, in a deliberative, interactive process between the institution and the person with disabilities. Recent and appropriate documentation of the disability and related functional limitations for which they are requesting accommodations must be provided to the Office of Student Accessibility.

If you recently completed High School, a copy of your 504Plan or your IEP and last re-evaluation report(s) (within 3 years) will be sufficient initial documentation. You will then schedule an appointment with one of our staff members to determine reasonable and appropriate accommodations.

Students are encouraged to submit documentation in a timely manner.  The Office of Student Accessibility needs sufficient time to review the documentation and to make a determination of reasonable and appropriate accommodations, particularly because accommodations are not retroactive.

To begin the process of seeking accommodations:

Additional Services Available within the Office of Student Accessibility

We provide enhanced support services for neurodiverse students focusing on academic performance, career development, social skills development, and successful independent college living.

  • Academic Coaching to assist students with time management, organizational skills, study skills and test taking strategies.
  • Sensory Rooms for students that provide a safe space for students who struggle with anxiety and concentration issues. Students can utilize the rooms when they begin to experience over stimulation and need a place to help go back to equilibrium. Sensory rooms are available in Dorothy Day and in Trexler Library.
  • Testing Room—a reduced distraction environment for students with accommodations to complete their assessments.

Sample of some accommodations:

  • Extended time for assessments
  • Text to speech software
  • Speech to text software
  • Note taking Assistance
  • Prior access to course material
  • Single Room in University Residence Hall
  • Dining Accommodations such as gluten free

See Student Accessibility Services in the Undergraduate University Catalog.

The mission of the Office of Student Accessibility is to honor the dignity and affirm the value of each person across the spectrum of ability.  We foster and support the Salesian commitment to community engagement by encouraging diversity of strength, thought, and vigor through awareness, advocacy, collaboration, and education in accessibility, and inclusion of students who self-identity as having a disability.

How to find our office

From Admissions Main Entrance
From Accessibility Door
From the Dooling Parking Lot
From Trexler Library and Dorothy Day Student Union

Helpful Links for Accessibility

Contact Us

Office of Student Accessibility
Dooling Hall Room 19