Disability Support Services Frequently Asked Questions

Who qualifies to receive accommodations, and services from Disability Services?

Disability Support Services (DSS) provides academic accommodations and auxiliary aids for students with many types of disabilities, including learning disorders, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, psychiatric disorders, traumatic brain injury, deaf and hard-of-hearing, blind and low vision, mobility impairments, medical conditions, autism spectrum disorders and temporary disabilities. To learn more about necessary documentation to qualify for academic accommodations and auxiliary aids, please visit Documentation Guidelines.

What is the process for a student to receive accommodations?

More specifically, is this a one-time process for the time a student is enrolled at Wake Tech, or do students have to requalify? If they must requalify, how often?

Registering with Disability Support Services (DSS) is a one-time process. Once determined eligible, the student is required to submit the Accommodation Request form online each semester to request Accommodation Notices be sent to instructors.

How long will it be before they receive academic an accommodations?

From the time a student submits required paperwork to Disability Support Services (DSS), how long will it be before they receive academic an accommodations? Turnaround time from receipt of documentation to processing of letters varies. There is no specific deadline or required to initiate accommodation process.

The required steps are:

  • Documentation is received, reviewed and assigned by DSS administrative staff
  • Additional documentation may be necessary to determine eligible
  • An Initial interview is completed by a DSS coordinator
  • The Accommodation Request form is completed by the student (each semester)
  • Accommodation notices are emailed to the instructor
  • Students are encouraged to initiate a conversation with the instructor in regarding their academic accommodations

If you have questions in regards to the student, please contact the coordinator assigned. If you do not know who the assigned coordinator is, please refer back to the Accommodation Notice or contact Disability Support Services (DSS).

What is response to, "I am waiting for an initial interview"?

More specifically, what is the correct response to a student who says they have turned in their Disability Support Services (DSS) paperwork, are waiting for an initial interview without prior notification from DSS?

DSS does not encourage faculty to provide academic accommodations without an accommodation notice. Students can disclose to the DSS office at any point.

What are the expectations for the faculty member?

More specifically, when an accommodation notice is received from Disability Support Services (DSS), what is the expectation for the faculty member?

The Americans with Disability Act (ADA) mandates that students with disabilities receive academic accommodations that are reasonable and appropriate.

When notes are part of the accommodation, whose responsibility is it to find the notetaker?

More specifically, when notes are part of the accommodation, whose responsibility is it to find the notetaker? Once a notetaker is identified, whose responsibility is it to make sure the notes are given to the student?

A student with accommodation of volunteer note taking should

  • Ask a classmate to volunteer to take notes
  • Provide carbonless duplication paper that is available in the Disability Support Services (DSS) office to the volunteer notetaker
  • If the student has difficulty with this process, seek assistance from the instructor

Note: Paid notetakers are generally hired by DSS for students with specific disabilities

What if the student requires assistive technology?

If the student has the accommodation of assistive technology (i.e. Kurzweil, Zoomtext, Jaws, etc.) and you have questions, please contact our assistive technology (AT) specialist. If you need immediate assistance and you cannot reach the AT specialist, make contact with the AT technician at Southern Wake Campus.

What is the difference between “service animals” and emotional support animals?

Service animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Staff may ask two questions: (1) is the dog a service animal required because of a disability, and (2) what work or task has the dog been trained to perform.

Emotional support animals (ESA) is any animal that is often used as part of a medical treatment plan as therapy animals, but they are not considered “service animals” under the American with Disabilities Act. However, based on ADA guidelines, ESAs are considered a reasonable accommodation for students with a documented disability and a physician’s specific accommodation. ESAs can be any animal. Students utilizing ESAs must be registered through Disability Support Services (DSS).

When a student faints or has a seizure in class, what is the appropriate response?

Please refer to Wake Tech Emergency Medical Protocols & Response Checklist. 911 must be called. However, the student can refuse service and/or transport once they arrive. This releases us from liability.