Request for Accommodations/Documentation of a Disability
In order to be recognized by the College as a person with a disability and become entitled to reasonable accommodations, a student must first disclose a disability with the Office of Accessibility Resources and Services (OARS) and provide appropriate supporting documentation in accordance with our documentation guidelines. That signifies that the student is formally registering with the College as a person with a disability and is seeking accommodations. Students may not receive accommodations from the College without such disclosure and/or without providing appropriate supporting information and documentation. A request for accommodations may be made at the point of disclosure or at some future date. Accommodations cannot be retroactive. Some students who go through the process of documenting a disability are not seeking specific accommodations, but are rather seeking confirmation of a disability that they can present to faculty to assist in best meeting their learning strengths and weaknesses; faculty are not obligated to provide any accommodations which are not formally approved through OARS.
Housing Accommodation Requests
OARS works closely with the Housing Accommodation Committee to review and approve requests for accommodations in the residential setting. The Housing Accommodation Committee includes members of the Housing Operations Office, Dining Services, and Health and Counseling Services who consult to ensure students' disability-related needs are met in the residence halls with reasonable accommodations and appropriate placement. Please navigate to the Housing Accommodation Request Process for more information about requesting housing-based accommodations
Review of Requests
All requests for accommodations will be assessed by the Office of Accessibility Resources and Services through an interactive process with the student. It is OARS’ general practice to discuss accommodations directly with the student requesting them prior to approval and to consider the student's history of accommodation, self-report of necessary accommodations, and documentation from a relevant treating professional. OARS may request further information from the student and/or treating professional and may make its own recommendations for alternative, reasonable accommodations which are more appropriate to address individual circumstances in the context of Hampshire courses and curricula. Students will be notified in a timely manner by OARS when requests are approved, modified, or denied. Students can request additional accommodations at any time or appeal denial of accommodations.
Disability Related Accommodations and Academic Contracts
(Please find more about academic contracts and accommodations here: Guidelines for Academic Progress.)
Request for Accommodations at the Five Colleges
Hampshire students frequently take courses at the other four colleges in the Five College consortium. If a student documents a disability at their home college, they do not need to engage the same process at the other colleges. Requests for accommodations in courses at other colleges can be made with OARS staff, who will certify that the student is recognized as a person with a disability and approved for accommodations at Hampshire College. The student is then responsible for bringing verification of accommodation from their home institution to the accessibility services office at the host institution. The final decision regarding the appropriateness or feasibility of such a request for accommodation rests with the accessibility services administrator at the other campus. Though the hosting institution’s accessibility services staff will consult with OARS when appropriate to support students as proactively as possible, any formal grievances regarding barriers or discrimination encountered at another institution in the Five Colleges should follow the host institution’s grievance process.
More about accommodations at other campuses can be found on our Five College Accommodations page.