Spectrum Q & A With College Transition Consultant Susan Woods: Declaring a Disability

In this series of videos, former Associate Dean of Student Support Services Susan Woods answers questions for students and parents preparing for the transition from high school to college. Here she takes a moment to discuss how students declare a disability in college to access accommodations. Some students may resist declaring their disability because they don’t want to be stigmatized, but FERPA protects students’ rights to privacy. Plus, declaring a disability allows students to plan for times when ytheyu may need more support. It doesn’t necessarily mean they have to activate any particular accommodations.

Interested in seeing more from Susan? You might like her Core Issues page, The Academic World: An Introduction for Parents or Spectrum Q & A With College Transition Consultant Susan Woods: Self-Assessment. You can also read up on FERPA here. Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

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Susan Woods, M. Ed, recently retired as Associate Dean of Student Support Services at Middlesex Community College after 27 years. Susan managed the college’s Disability Support Services, supporting 1000 students with documented disabilities, as well as alternative and grant funded support programs. Susan has regularly provided training and workshops to faculty and staff on creating welcoming and inclusive environments and universal design for instruction. Her work now focuses on professional development and training to high school personnel and families to help support the successful transition to college for students with disabilities. Her professional development website is www.susanbwoods.com.

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