Student Disability Services

Services for Students with Disabilities

The Office of Student Disability Services assists Marywood University in ensuring that qualified students with disabilities are afforded and given access to the same, or equal, educational opportunities available to other University students, as mandated by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 as amended by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008. Assistance is provided to both students with disabilities and to the campus community so that students are not discriminated against due to their disability in policies, procedures, and practices conducted within, or as part of, the University environment. The Office of Student Disability Services helps facilitate the education of students who have disabilities by coordinating a variety of services that support the unique academic needs of permanently and temporarily disabled students. The Office of Student Disability Services also works to create and uphold policies, procedures and practices within the university environment that will not discriminate against students due to their disability

Disability Grievance Policy & Procedures »

Who is Eligible?

We provide services to students with functional limitations due to visual, hearing, learning, attention, psychological, or mobility disabilities as well as students who have specific chronic health conditions. Any student who is enrolled at Marywood University and who self-identifies with Student Disability Services as having a disability is eligible for support.

Specific accommodations are determined individually for each student and must be supported by appropriate documentation and/or evaluation of needs (refer to Accommodation Process). Student Disability Services reserves the right to ask for any appropriate documentation of disability in order to determine a student's eligibility for accommodations.

Roles & Responsibilities

Student Disability Services

  • Maintain medical and psychological documentation in a confidential manner.
  • Determine if conditions are a disability in accordance with state and federal laws.
  • Identify and assist with the implementation of reasonable accommodations.
  • Request updated documentation when symptoms change to determine if accommodations need to be modified.
  • Serve as a resource for both students and faculty to help resolve disability-related issues.
  • Provide information and referrals to campus and community resources.


  • Provide medical and/or psychological documentation to Student Disability Services.
  • Participate in the process of determining and implementing reasonable accommodations.
  • Inform Student Disability Services when accommodations need to be modified or symptoms change.
  • Inform Student Disability Services of any difficulties obtaining approved accommodations from faculty.

Student Disability Resources

Academic accommodations for students with disabilities are made on an individualized and flexible basis, with input from the student, Director of Student Disability Services, and the Accessibility Coordinator. Accommodations should in no way compromise the essential elements or objectives of the curriculum. Accommodations will be designed to meet a student's disability-related needs without fundamentally altering the nature of the instructional program. The most useful accommodations will address the student's ability to learn, although some accommodations may also modify the particular ways in which students demonstrate their mastery of course material. Instructors must be satisfied that such accommodations do not lower the teaching standards of the University. The process for establishing reasonable accommodations follows:

 Request Academic Accommodations

1. The following questions need to be asked and answered to identify the reasonable accommodations:

  • Is the individual a "person with a disability"?
  • Is the individual "otherwise qualified"?
  • What are the barriers resulting from the interaction between the documented disability and the campus environment?
  • What are possible accommodations, modifications, or adjustments that might remove the barriers?
  • Without these accommodations, would the individual still have meaningful access to the program, service, or activity?
  • Would these accommodations compromise the essential elements of the curriculum?
  • Would these accommodations require a fundamental alteration in the nature of the program, service, or activity?

2. A student requesting accommodations should email or fill out the Intake Request.

3. The student will meet with the Student Disability Services Director or Accessibility Coordinator and designs a plan for each class every semester. To initiate this plan, the student will:

Step 1: Access the Accommodation Portal through this link :Accommodation Portal

Step 2: Login with the prefix of your Marywood email + and password 

Step 3: Upon login, choose the semester, then under course information, choose the department and section.  You then click that you acknowledge and understand, click on signature and hit continue.Important** you will need to do this for each class you need accommodations in. 

Note: If you are uncertain if you requested a specific course you can check your email for confirmation of the request.


  • The professor, the student, and the Office of Student Disability services will receive a PDF version of the accommodation plan with signatures of each party when the process is complete. 
  • This plan is our contract for the semester and it is your responsibility to monitor that you get back a completed plan for each course. 
  • Please allow five business days for your plan to be completed. If you have not received it back please email your professor and cc
  • It is strongly encouraged to communicate with your professor regarding your academic accommodations from the beginning of the semester.
  • If you have a concern about your accommodations, or need to make a change to your accommodations at any point in the semester, remember you can reach out to our office at any time.

Once the accommodation request is completed, it will be sent to the SDS for approval and then submitted to each professor via email. It is the professor’s responsibility to log into their email and approve the accommodation plan. Finally, once the professor approval is submitted, the SDS reviews the plan and gives the final approval.

Once all of the above steps are completed, the student, the students’ professors and The Office of Student Disability Services will receive a PDF version of the finalized accommodation plan. The plan will include all of the students’ accommodations and all necessary signatures (the student, professors and the SDS). 


    Some classes require more creative accommodations due to the nature of the course or the complexity of the functional limitations. When this occurs, the Student Disability Services Coordinator will facilitate a dialog with the student and the faculty member to clarify the essential elements of the course and identify creative and reasonable accommodations, considering the functional limitations of the student. It is important for the faculty member, the student, and the Office of Student Disability Services to be clear about their roles in the accommodation process.

    Your disability must be documented in order to receive accommodations. Documentation should reflect current conditions and can be most helpful when it includes as much of the following as possible:

    • A clearly stated diagnosis of the disability or disabilities
    • Method of evaluation, including testing instruments
    • Educational, developmental and medical case history
    • Functional limitations
    • Recommended accommodations

    Submit documentation by mail, fax, or email to:

    Marywood University
    Office of Student Disability Services
    2300 Adams Avenue
    Scranton PA 18509
    Fax: 570.340.6073

    Documentation Guidelines

    Information pertaining to a student’s disability is helpful in establishing the existence of a disability, understanding its impact, and making informed decisions about reasonable accommodations. This includes: 

    1. The student’s self-report to the Office of Student Disability Services during the initial intake interview and subsequent discussions;
    2. Relevant information gathered by the Office of Student Disability Services from observation, interaction with the student, and observation of others;
    3. External documentation from the professional(s) diagnosing the disability. This external documentation can verify the presence of a disability if not readily apparent and might include:
    • A clearly stated diagnosis of the disability or disabilities
    • A description of functional limitations resulting from the disability or disabilities
    • Educational, developmental and medical case history (this may include evidence of prior accommodation such as IEP, 504 plan, record of accommodations for standardized testing/SAT’s, etc.)
    • Method of evaluation, including testing instruments
    • Description of the specific accommodations recommended with rationale as to how the request is related to the impact of the disability

    While there are no restrictions on the age limit of acceptable documentation, it is important that the description reflect how the condition impacts the student at the current time and under the current circumstances.

    Marywood University will make every effort to grant equal access to qualifying students through the implementation of reasonable accommodations. Accommodations will be determined through a deliberate and collaborative process involving input from the student and the professional judgment of the Office of Student Disability Services. All decisions will be determined on an individual, case by case basis.

    Students are encouraged to submit documentation in person to the Office of Student Disability Services in the Learning Commons Room 217. Students can also submit documentation by mail, fax, or email as follows:

    Marywood University
    Office of Student Disability Services
    2300 Adams Avenue
    Scranton PA 18509
    Fax: 570.340.6073

    If you need extra help registering for courses because of your disability, or if you require specific accommodations in the classroom, we can assist in the following ways:

    • Ensuring your classroom is accessible.

    • Providing special equipment and devices in your classroom.

    Registration and Scheduling Policies

    Marywood University intends to comply fully with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 P.L. 93-112, as amended by P.L. 93-516. This act mandates equal opportunity for qualified persons with disabilities in education programs and activities of all recipients of federal financial assistance. Further, under HEW regulations colleges and universities must make certain that educational programs and activities are available to persons with disabilities "in the most integrated setting appropriate." This means that students with disabilities should not be unduly segregated, separated or treated differently. The University also intends to comply fully with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 as amended by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 which makes it illegal to discriminate against anyone who has a mental or physical disability in the areas of employment, public services, transportation, public accommodations, and telecommunications. This act extends, amends and clarifies many of the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Toward achieving this goal the Office of the Registrar has established the following policies and procedures.


    1. Students with disabilities will follow to the extent possible the published registration policies and procedures of Marywood University. In accordance with the "most integrated setting appropriate" principle, adjustment to these procedures for students with disabilities will be made in whatever way allows the student to register with the most similarity to his/her peers.
    2. Provision for students with disabilities needing any kind of special assistance or auxiliary aids in the registration process will be made on an individual basis.
    3. It is the responsibility of the course instructor to indicate as early as possible after registration if any special arrangements will be necessary with respect to course procedures/requirements (e.g. a student with auditory impairment may need to request an adjustment in course requirements if the requirements are based primarily on taped materials). In all cases, the faculty member should be allowed sufficient time to make whatever adjustments are necessary.


    1. Classes will be rescheduled to permit access for students with mobility impairments if they are scheduled for inaccessible classrooms.
    2. Classes will be rescheduled for students with disabilities using special equipment/devices when this equipment cannot be properly utilized in the classroom in which a course was originally scheduled.
    3. No automatic or arbitrary scheduling or rescheduling process will make changes or special arrangements for any student with a disability who does not desire or require such treatment.

    All requests by persons with disabilities for adjustments in Registration Policy/Procedures or for rescheduling of classes to accessible classrooms should be made through:

    The Office of Student Disability Services
    Marywood University
    Learning Commons 166
    (570) 348-6211 ext 2335

    The Disability Services Coordinator (DSC) will then submit to the Registrar a written request for necessary changes. The judgment of the DSC will be respected with regard to whatever adjustments are appropriate for a particular student with disabilities.

    Confidentiality of Student Records

    Marywood University intends to comply fully with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended. This act was designated to protect the privacy of education records, to establish the right of students to inspect and review their education records and to provide guidelines for the correction of inaccurate or misleading data through informal and formal hearings. A policy statement explains in detail the procedures to be used by Marywood University for compliance with the provisions of the act. Copies of the policy statement can be found in the Office of the Registrar and the Offices of the Academic Deans.


    Office of the Registrar
    Liberal Arts Center - Room 92A
    (570) 340-6054

    Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
    Shields Center for Visual Arts 232
    (570) 348-6233

    Dean, College of Health and Human Services
    O'Neill Center for Healthy Families 106
    (570) 348-6001

    Dean, College of Professional Studies
    Center for Architectural Studies 1037
    (570) 348-6211 x 6063

    Academic accommodations are designed to meet your disability-related needs without fundamentally altering the nature of the instructional program. A variety of academic accommodations can be made, depending on your particular needs. They may include:

    • Extended time on timed tests
    • Distraction-free environment for taking tests
    • Ability to tape record lectures or note taking support
    • Accessible classrooms
    • Exams read aloud with text-to-speech technology.
    • Assistance developing a time line when completing long-range assignments.
    • Relocating classes to accessible locations.
    • Sign language interpreters.
    • Access to text in alternative formats for students with a documented print-disability. (This includes not only blindness and vision impairments, but also learning disabilities and other disabilities that affect reading.)

      Reasonable housing accommodations will be made for on-campus residents. These may include:

      • Single room
      • Wheelchair (ADA) accessible rooms
      • Private bathrooms
      • Close proximity to elevators and exits

      For specific housing needs, please read our housing FAQ or contact Student Disability Services at

      Request Housing Accommodations

        1.   A student requesting housing accommodations should email the office at or by filling out the Intake Request
        2. Student will meet with director or accessibility coordinator to complete an intake appointment. The student will be provided with documentation for their provider to complete.
        3. Your documentation will be reviewed by the Office of Student Disability Services and, if necessary, the Housing Commitee and Housing Residence Life Office.

         Single room housing accommodation requests are based on medical need, not preference, and are subject to availability. 

      Housing FAQs

      What are the deadlines for submitting housing accommodations?
      In order to identify the best fit for your individual needs, you are encouraged to submit documentation as soon as possible. We will review documentation as soon as it is received.
      If I already submitted documentation to the Office of Student Disability Services, can that be used for housing accommodations, too?
      If applicable, this documentation can be considered for housing accommodations as well. The documentation must specifically address housing accommodations.
      How often must I submit documentation for housing accommodations?
      Students with chronic disabilities should submit documentation only once, unless their needs change. Students with a temporary condition, such as a broken leg, must submit additional documentation to determine whether or not to continue accommodations.
      Why is my medical condition considered a disability?
      The ADA Amendments Act of 2008 broadened the definition of a person who has a disability to include a variety of conditions that substantially impair one or more major life activities. Students who seek housing accommodations can be understood to have conditions which meet these definitions.
      Are single occupancy rooms available?
      We do have a limited number of single rooms that may be available to you based on your disability. Living in a community environment involves interactions with fellow students. Some distractions are unavoidable. Therefore, single room accommodations based on a need to be free of distractions aren't usually granted.
      If I receive housing accommodations, can I select my own room and roommate?
      If you prefer a particular location, we will take it into consideration. However, since we must support all student requests, specific room requests are not guaranteed. Similarly, we cannot guarantee a specific roommate.
      How do I make adjustments to my housing accommodations?
      To request a change to your housing accommodations, contact the Office of Disability Services to discuss possible alternatives. You may need to provide additional documentation to support modifications.

      Testing accommodations are available to students who have completed an intake and developed an accommodation plan for the course(s) that you are requisition accommodations for.

      Testing Center Hours: 8:30AM-4:30PM, Monday-Friday

      All students must request to take any exam or quiz 3 business days in advance. 

      If you have an exam outside of the Testing Center hours, requests must be made 5 business days in advance. If your professor allows, please try to schedule any exams that occur after 3pm earlier in the day. 

       To request to take an exam with accommodations please use this form: Test Request Form

      Student Disability Services will email your professor to inform them of your request. 

      NOTE: For online classes or online exams, students should communicate with the professor individually to come up with a plan. The student should contact the professor in advance to ensure that appropriate changes can be made  to ensure that accommodation needs are met.


      • Refer students to Student Disability Services to request accommodations.
      • Respond to students and Student Disability Services in a timely manner by reviewing written accommodations within 7 days of receipt and signing to acknowledge the terms of the accommodation plan.
      • Contact Student Disability Services with questions or concerns about a written accommodation plan within 24 hours of receipt so that an appropriate solution can be developed in a timely manner.
      • Request assistance from Student Disability Services with accommodation, implementation, or consultation.

      Faculty Disability Resources

      If a student with a disability seeks academic accommodations from you directly, refer the student to the Office of Student Disability Services for assistance.

      If a student presents a written request for accommodations from the Office of Student Disability Services, you must review and sign the plan within 7 days of receipt to acknowledge that you have read and understood the provisions. If you have questions or concerns about the approved accommodations, contact Student Disability Services at ext 2383 immediately so that a reasonable solution can be reached in a timely manner.

      It's important that students who require accommodations for documented disabilities know they can seek assistance from the Office of Student Disability Services. During the first week of the semester, please inform your students that special accommodations will be addressed by the Director of Student Disability Services.

      In addition, consider including the following statement in your syllabus:

      Marywood University complies with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 as amended by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008. Students with disabilities who need special accommodations must submit documentation of the disability to the Office of Student Disability Services, Learning Commons166, in order for reasonable accommodations to be granted. The Office of Disability Services will partner with students to determine the appropriate accommodations and, in cooperation with the instructor, will work to ensure that all students have a fair opportunity to perform in this class. Students are encouraged to notify instructors and the Office of Student Disability Services as soon as they determine accommodations are necessary; however, documentation will be reviewed at any point in the semester upon receipt. Specific details of the disability will remain confidential between the student and the Office of Student Disability services unless the student chooses to disclose or there is a legitimate academic need for disclosure on a case-by-case basis. For assistance, please contact the Director of Student Disability Services, at 570-348-6211 x2383 or

      Our Role in Accommodating Students with Disabilities

      Presentation from the Marywood Faculty/Staff retreat, August 2009.


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