The policy defines the University’s stance position on student access and provides links the various policies related to student access across the University.

Policy Statement

This policy sets forth core principles and standards with respect to student access at Adelphi University. The policy defines the University’s stance position on student access and provides links the various policies related to student access across the University.

Reason for Policy

The Student Access Office is a vital campus resource. The Student Access Office (formerly the Office of Disability Support Services) achieves its mission by:

  • Providing cost-free assistance and services that are tailored to meet the needs of individuals based on their specific, appropriately documented needs, while preserving Adelphi’s academic integrity and high standards of academic expectations and performance
  • Encouraging independence through the training of students with disabilities to effectively advocate for themselves within the University community
  • Serving as a liaison and resource for the University faculty, staff and administrators to foster a greater awareness and appreciation of issues of concern to people with different needs

Who Is Governed by this Policy

Students with Disabilities


The Student Access Office (formerly the Office of Disability Support Services) ensures equal access to all of Adelphi University’s programs, services and facilities for students with documented needs. Through assistance, advocacy and reasonable accommodations, the office provides an accessible and supportive campus environment.

SAO has many campus partners who provide programs, resources and services to all Adelphi students, including Bridges to Adelphi, the Center for Career Development, Distance Learning, the Learning Center, the Student Counseling Center and the Writing Center.

SAO is actively involved in the planning and preparation of Adelphi University’s Commencement exercises, as well as University events, such as lectures, cultural events and many others.

The office’s policies and procedures meet the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and prevailing University policy.


Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): Civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public.

Section 504: Civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of a disability. This law applies to schools, among other entities, stating that no otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States…shall, solely by reason of his or her disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Legal Definition of an Individual with a Disability: A person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment.

Major Life Activity: Eating, speaking, walking lifting thinking, seeing sleeping, hearing, bending, working, learning, breathing, standing, reading, reaching, concentrating, communicating, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, interacting with others, and bodily functions.

Reasonable Accommodation: A modification or adjustment to a program, course, activity, or facility that will enable an individual with a disability to participate in all areas of University life.

Service Animal: Service animals are defined as dogs and miniature horses that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Examples of such work or tasks include guiding people who are blind, alerting people who are deaf,  pulling a wheelchair, alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure, reminding a
person with mental illness to take prescribed medications, calming a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) during an anxiety attack, or performing other duties.
Service animals are working animals, not pets.

Emotional Support Animal (ESA): An emotional support animal is one that is necessary to allow a person with a disability an equal opportunity to participate in University housing. An emotional support animal may provide physical assistance, emotional support, calming, stability, and other kinds of assistance. Emotional support animals do not perform work or tasks that would qualify them as “service animals” under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).


Student Guide


Related Information

Guidelines for Documentation (Must be submitted with Petition for Reasonable Accommodations)

Neurodevelopmental Disability

Physical Disability

Sensory Disability

Mental Health Disability

Intersystem Disability

Temporary Disabilities

Document History

  • Last Reviewed Date: February 10, 2018
  • Last Revised Date: November 30, 2017
  • Policy Origination Date: Not known

Who Approved This Policy

Rosemary Garabedian, Director, Student Access Office


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