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Transition Handbook

Access to Programs and Services

Post-secondary institutions have a responsibility to provide reasonable access to programs and services. There are at least three types of general programs and services that need to be made accessible, academic programs, programs and services open to the general public, and support services that are contracted for or co-sponsored on and off campus.

  1. Access to academic courses and curricula including both building access (ramps, automatic doors, ample spaces in rest rooms, etc.) and course content access (ASL interpreting, note taking assistance, assistive technology such as computers with voice recognition or synthesized voice, CCTV enlargers, books on tape, etc.)

  2. Access to programs and services open to the public, such as lecture series, theater productions, graduation ceremonies, must be made accessible for members of the public who wish to attend functions that are open to the public.

  3. Access to (a) cooperating institutions where internships, practuca, field experience, on-the-job-training or other extensions of academic programs are provided, (b) planned student activities on and off campus, and (c) to on-campus contracted services such as food services and vending machines. Included, under Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, is the requirement that all electronic media, computer based and Internet programs and services be made accessible for students with disabilities, who use screen readers on their computers, voice synthesizers, etc.

    Note: While the institution as a whole must make programs and services open to the general public accessible, it is up to each institution whether an office of "student services" will be the office that members of the general public should approach to seek accommodations. It should be clearly indicated in institutional publications where such accommodations are to be requested.

  4. Access to other "programs and services" provided by such institutions and which are open to the public or to students, even if they don't fit neatly in one of the above first three categories.