Learning Disabilities or Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD)

Students living with a visible or hidden disability have specific needs as a result of their conditions. Students who have documentation of a learning disability are eligible to receive accommodations from the Disabled Students Program.

Students with learning disabilities may have had long term difficulty in reading, writing, spelling, and/or mathematical concepts. Their verbal skills may far exceed their reading, writing, or spelling skills. Students with a learning disability may also process information slowly and need some “think time” to respond to a question, retrieve information, or solve a problem. They can have difficulty recalling and integrating information presented orally.

In an academic setting, students with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) may have difficulty sustaining attention and following through on instructions or completing a task; tend to lose things easily; frequently forget appointments; often interrupt or intrude on others; blurt out answers before questions have been completed; appear restless; seem not to listen when spoken to directly; and tend to be active and creative.

In cases of learning disorders, AD/HD, and/or psychiatric disabilities, students may not be aware that there are treatments and accommodations available for the symptoms that are interfering with their academic progress.

When you suspect a student may have a disability:


  1. Speak to the student in private about your concerns.
  2. Refer the student to the Disabled Students Program.
  3. Acknowledge the difficulties the student is experiencing.
  4. Be sensitive that low self-esteem may be associated with the disability.
  5. Be aware that the Disabled Students Program may need to contact the faculty member and/or T. A. to follow up on accommodations.
  6. Be aware that all disabilities need medical documentation before the student is eligible for services from the Disabled Students Program, and that accommodation requests should be arranged through the DSP Online System.


  1. Assume the student knows s/he may qualify for assistance from the Disabled Students Program.
  2. Assume the student wants to receive assistance from the Disabled Students Program.
  3. Pressure the student to acknowledge his/her disability.
  4. Speak to the student in a derogatory manner.