Southern Union State Community College

ADA / Special Needs

Counseling is provided or referrals are made in the areas of educational, vocational, personal, and social needs. All services are available to students on all campuses. To provide students further counseling information, a collection of current resource materials on careers, occupations, and undergraduate programs at other universities is located in the campus academic advising offices and the learning resource centers. ADA (http://www.ada.gov) services are available on each campus for qualified students. Students with documented disabilities or other special needs should contact Gary Branch, ADA Coordinator, at (334) 745-6437, Ext. 5351.

Assistance for Visually Impaired Students
Southern Union offers visually impaired students access to The Southern Union Catalog/Student Handbook online through screen magnification and screen reading.  ZoomText, which allows the student to see and hear everything on the computer screen, is available upon request at Opelika, Valley, and Wadley campuses.  To request this service, contact Gary Branch (Higginbotham Academic Center, 334-745-6437 extension 5351).

The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 state that qualified students with disabilities who meet the technical and academic standards at Southern Union State Community College are entitled to reasonable accommodations. Under these laws a disability is defined as any physical or mental impairment which substantially limits a major life activity. The Program for Students with Disabilities at Southern Union State Community College does not provide disability documentation for students. It is the student's responsibility to provide appropriate documentation to this office and to request accommodations. Appropriate documentation is being defined as that which meets the following criteria:

Health Condition, Mobility, Hearing, Speech, or Visual Impairment

A letter or report from treating physician, orthopedic specialist, audiologist, speech pathologist, or ophthalmologist (as appropriate), including...

  1. Clearly stated diagnosis
  2. Defined levels of functioning and any limitations
  3. Current treatment and medication
  4. Current letter/report (within 1 year), dated and signed

Psychological Disorder

A letter or report from a mental health professional (psychologist, neuropsychologist, licensed professional counselor), including:

  1. Clearly stated diagnosis (DSM-IV criteria)
  2. Defined levels of functioning and any limitations
  3. Supporting documentation (i.e. test data, history, observations, etc.)
  4. Current treatment and medication
  5. Current letter/report (within 1 year), dated and signed

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
A comprehensive evaluation report by a rehabilitation counselor, speech-language, pathologist, orthopedic specialist, and/or neuropsychologist (or other specialists as appropriate), including:

  1. Assessment of cognitive abilities, including processing speed and memory.
  2. Analysis of educational achievement skills and limitations (reading comprehension, written language, spelling, and mathematical abilities)
  3. Defined levels of functioning and limitations in all affected areas (communication, vision, hearing, mobility, psychological, seizures, etc.)
  4. Current treatment and medication
  5. Current letter/report (post-rehabilitation and within 1 year), dated and signed

Learning Disabilities (LD)

A comprehensive evaluation report from a clinical psychologist, psychiatrist, neuropsychologist, school psychologist, learning disability specialist or diagnostician including:

  1. Clear statement of presenting problem, diagnostic interview
  2. Educational history documenting the impact of the learning disability
  3. Alternative explanations and diagnoses are ruled out
  4. Relevant test data with standard scores are provided to support conclusions, including at least:
    • WAIS-R
    • Woodcock-Johnson Psychoeducational Battery. Including Written Language
    • Woodcock-Johnson Cognitive Processing Battery to substantiate any processing problems
  5. Clearly stated diagnosis or a learning disability based upon DMS–IV criteria.
  6. Defined levels of functioning and any limitations, supported by evaluation data
  7. Current report within 3 years dated and signed

Note: High School IEP. 504 Plan, and/or a letter from a physician
or other professional will not be sufficient to document a learning disability.

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

A comprehensive evaluation report from a physician, psychiatrist, clinical psychologist, neurologist, or neuropsychologist, including:

  1. Clear statement of presenting problem; diagnostic interview
  2. Evidence of early ad current impairment in at least two different environments (comprehensive history)
  3. Alternative explanations and diagnosis are ruled out
  4. Relevant test data with standard scores are provided to support conclusions, including at least:
    • WAIS-R
    • Woodcock-Johnson Psychoeducational Battery-Revised, including Written Language
    • Behavioral Assessment Instruments for ADD/ADHD normed on adults
  5. Clearly stated diagnosis of ADD or ADHD based upon DSM-IV criteria
  6. Defined levels of functioning and any limitations, supported by evaluation data
  7. Current report within 3 years dated and signed

Note: High School IEP. 504 Plan and/or letter from a physician or other professional will not be sufficient to document ADD or ADHD. Medication cannot be used to imply a diagnosis.