Start with Accessibility Services

CUAA is committed to removing barriers that prevent students with disabilities from achieving their academic goals. Whether you are a current CUAA student, incoming freshman, or transfer student, the information below will help you to begin the process of registering with the ARC.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act & The Americans with Disabilities Act 

CUAA is governed by two laws: Subpart E of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and both Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008. 

Both Section 504 and the ADA are civil rights laws which ensure that no otherwise qualified person with a disability is denied the benefits of or excluded from participation in a federally funded program simply because he/she has a disability.

What is a disability?

Under Section 504:

  • A person is considered to be a person with a disability if he/she is someone with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. This includes care for oneself, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working.
  • A person is considered to be a person with a disability if he/she has the disability, has a record of the disability or is regarded as having the disability.

Who is eligible for Accessibility Services?

A “qualified individual with a disability” is one who, “with or without reasonable modifications to rules, policies, or practices; the removal of architectural, communication, or transportation barriers; or the provision of auxiliary aids and services, meets the essential eligibility requirements for the receipt of services or the participation in programs or activities provided by (the post-secondary institution).”

This means that in order to receive services from CUAA's Accessibility Services, the student must have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. In addition, students must provide appropriate documentation which supports the physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

What accommodations are possible?

If the interaction between a student’s disability and the physical environment or the manner in which a program or service is offered results in unequal access, a post-secondary institution makes reasonable accommodations to eliminate the barriers to equal access. Reasonable accommodations are adjustments or modifications in any given component of the post-secondary educational opportunity, from admission to graduation.

An accommodation is not reasonable if:

  • Making the accommodation or allowing participation poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others;
  • Making the accommodation means making a substantial change in an essential element of the curriculum or a substantial alteration in the manner in which the University provides services;
  • Making the accommodation poses an undue financial or administrative burden on the University.

A range of accommodations are available to CUAA students, including academic adjustments, auxiliary aids and services, and non-academic accommodations, such as housing accommodations. A student's eligibility for accommodations will be determined through an interactive, individualized process wherein their physical or mental impairment(s) and related academic limitations are reviewed. Accommodations which may serve to eliminate barriers in the academic environment will then be recommended.

How do I register with Accessibility Services?

  • Students must apply, be accepted, and enrolled in courses at Concordia University Ann Arbor to start the process.
  • Students must complete the Registration for Accessibility Services online form.
  • Students must submit current documentation from a licensed professional regarding their disability.
  • Within 7 business days of receiving the application and documentation, the Director of the ARC & Accessibility Services will contact the student to schedule an intake appointment.
  • Once the intake appointment is complete, the student will be considered officially registered with Accessibility Services.
Register Here

What documentation is needed?

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act as Amended (ADAAA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, individuals with disabilities have certain protection and rights to accommodations in colleges and universities. Documentation must be recent and include an evaluation by a licensed clinical professional (who is to related to the person being evaluated) describing the current impact and limitations of the disability. This standard of documentation also applies to housing accommodation request due to physical or medical conditions. It is the student’s sole responsibility to provide recent, professional, medical document of his or her disability The documentation should include the following:

  • A comprehensive statement identifying the disability/condition, date of the current diagnostic evaluation, and the date of the original diagnosis
  • A description of the diagnostic criteria and /or diagnostic test(s) used.
  • Treatment, medications, assistive devices/service currently prescribed or being used.
  • A description of the current functional impact/limitations of the disability.
  • Recommendations for specific accommodations and rationale for those recommendations.
  • The credentials of the diagnosing professional(s) including the training and experience which enabled the person capable of making the diagnosis(es).

Please note: most I.E.P. (Individual Educational Plans) or 504 Plans from high school do not include the full psycho-educational testing and results required. For your convenience, you may also choose to provide your health care professional with the Accessibility Services Verification Form.

Printable Accessibility Services Documentation Guidelines

Where can I receive an assessment if I think I have a disability?

If you suspect you have a learning disability and need to be assessed, there are a few things you should do. First, if you have insurance, check with your insurance provider regarding coverage for learning disability assessments (sometimes called psycho-educational or neuro-psychological evaluations). If assessments are covered, inquire about the process for finding a provider in your area. Second, ask your doctor to refer you to a licensed health professional, such as a psychologist, who has the expertise to perform learning disability assessments. Oftentimes, a referral from your doctor increases the likelihood that your insurance company will cover at least part of the cost for the assessment.

The Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS) office at CUAA offers free, confidential resources for students to use at any point during their time on campus. If you or someone you know could use a little help or a person to talk to, don’t hesitate to reach out to their office, which is located in the Student Services Building (734-995-7316 or ali.ross@cuaa.edu). The CAPS office can provide mental health and related assessments, and their staff are able to send documentation to Accessibility Services as part of the registration process.

For other questions related to assessments of disabilities, please contact the Director of the ARC & Accessibility Services at tori.negash@cuaa.edu or 734-995-7582.

Timeliness of Decisions Concerning Accommodation Requests

It is our goal in Accessibility Services to process requests for accommodations in a timely manner. This means that we can usually process completed requests within 7- 14 business days. However, during peak times, e.g. at the beginning of a semester or for more complex requests, this timeline often needs to be reasonably extended. Please consider this when seeking accommodations and submit your requests as early as possible.

Initial requests for accommodations are considered complete when Accessibility Services has:

Please note: the 7–14 business days begin at the time the complete request for accommodations is received by Accessibility Services.

Students registered with Accessibility Services

As a student registered with Accessibility Services, it is our hope that you will utilize your accommodations to help you be successful in your courses throughout your time at CUAA. Now that you are a successfully registered with Accessibility Services, here is what you need to know.

Upon successful completion of the review process for Accessibility Services:
  1. An email will be sent to your CUAA account with login information for the Accessibility Services portal.
  2. Once you have received access to the portal, you can begin submitting “Accommodation Requests.” This is where you will get to choose the courses for which you will use your accommodations and which accommodations you wish to utilize.
  3. Students can submit accommodation requests after they have registered for classes, but no sooner than midterms during the semester prior. The ideal time to submit accommodation requests is 1-2 months prior to the beginning of the semester for which the student wants to use their accommodations.
To submit accommodation requests:
  • Step 1: Log in to your Accessibility Services Portal.
  • Step 2: Under the term that you are requesting accommodations for, choose the courses for which you want to use your accommodations.
  • Step 3: Click on “Continue to Customize Your Accommodations"
  • Step 4: Choose which accommodations you want to use in each of the classes you already selected
  • Step 5: Submit Your Accommodation Requests

Complete instructions on submitting accommodation requests.

After submission:
  • The ARC will send out your faculty notification emails (typically 1 week prior to the start of the semester if you request accommodations before the semester begins). You will be copied on the faculty notification emails.
  • You should plan to meet with your professor during the first two weeks of class to introduce yourself and to discuss your needs in their specific course.
Testing Accommodations:
  • If you have been approved for testing accommodations, you will be allowed to schedule exams, quizzes, and final exams in the Testing Center.
  • Review your syllabus for each class at the beginning of the semester to determine when you will need to sign-up for your exams. You can sign up for exams through your ARC portal.
  • Students must submit requests for exams and quizzes at least 3 business days in advance.
  • Requests to take final exams in the testing center must be submitted at least 5 business days in advance.

Complete instructions on submitting testing requests

Please remember that accommodations are not retroactive and therefore cannot be applied to previously graded work or class requirements. Though students registered with Accessibility Services have the ability to choose the classes for which they want to use their accommodations, students must request accommodations each semester. The student is responsible to seek support.

We recommend that you review your syllabus for each class at the beginning of the semester to determine when you will need to sign-up for your exams. You can sign up for exams through your Accessibility Services portal.

Please remember that you are not required to utilize all of your accommodations in all of your classes. Students registered with the Accessibility Services have the ability to choose the classes for which they want to use their accommodations. For more information, see the ARC-AS Handbook.

Don’t forget to utilize all of the free services the Academic Resource Center provides!