Disability Support Services

  •  Students with documented disabilities may request academic accommodations through the Disability Support Services Office (DSS). These services comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 which mandate program accessibility for students with disabilities in postsecondary institutions receiving federal funds. The college is obligated to provide reasonable accommodations, auxiliary aids and services to qualified students with disabilities to ensure their effective participation in all college programs and services. Students do not have to disclose a disability to the college if they are not requesting services.

    However, for those students who choose to self-identify, they must provide current documentation of disability to support reasonable accommodations. They must also register, pay for courses, and bring their paid receipt to DSS one month prior to the beginning of classes to avoid delays in service.

    For students who are recent high school graduates, there are some important differences between high school and college in the provision of support services and accommodations.

    • First, you will be moving from entitlement to services (mandatory accommodations) to eligibility for services (having to request accommodations). This means that you will not likely receive all of the accommodations you enjoyed in high school. However, you will have many support services available to you on campus such as tutoring, academic advising, and mentoring to name a few. You will also be expected to read and write at high levels, increase your independence, ask for support (self-advocacy skills), and seek out resources. The college has many resources available to you such as the library (Accokeek Hall), the tutoring, writing and grammar center (Bladen Hall, Room 107), the learning assistance lab (Marlboro Hall 2129), and various computer labs throughout campus.
    • Second, you will be viewed as an adult responsible for decisions regarding your academic program and use of services. You are responsible for notifying the Disability Support Service office (BH-124) as to the nature of your disability and work with DSS staff to identify appropriate accommodations. You may call the DSS office to set up an initial interview appointment with the DSS Manager after you have registered and paid for classes. Additionally, you have a right to a private and confidential meeting without the presence of your parent or guardian.
    • Third, you are responsible for providing all documentation supporting your disability, particularly in cases where the disability is not obvious. The college does not offer psychoeducational assessment to establish the existence of a learning disability. It is very important that you keep copies of any psychoeducational testing results done in high school.
    • Fourth, the student must contact DSS if he or she is requesting a sign language interpreter or notetaker services one month before classes start. The student must have registered and paid for classes at the time that he/she makes the request for an interpreter or notetaker.

    Note: An Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) and Section 504 Plan do not provide sufficient documentation when requesting reasonable accommodations and will not be use to grant accommodations. You must present a psychological report, psychoeducational evaluation, or other documentation approved by the DSS program director. These reports should not be older than three years.

    Services Provided in DSS

    Accommodations are determined on a case by case basis after consultation with the DSS program director or rehabilitation counselor specialist. Possible services may include:

    • Academic, personal, transfer, and career counseling to students
    • Sign language interpreters (staff and contract interpreting agencies)
    • Note taking services
    • Wheelchair accessible desk/tables
    • Extended test time and alternate testing locations (quiet environment)
    • Permission to tape record class lectures
    • Recorded textbooks as needed 
    • Support services to students with visual, physical, sensory and psychological disabilities
    • Referrals to community agencies
    • Use of adaptive technology

    Acceptable forms of documentation

    • Psychological report (full write-up) with recommendations
    • Woodcock Johnson Battery Revised (full report preferred) 
    • Neuropsychological evaluation
    • Psychological report (full write-up)
    • Letter from doctor (with diagnosis, functional limitations and educational limitations)

    Note: Academic accommodations are designed to provide each student with equal access in the classroom and do not change the academic standards, requirements, and code of conduct required of all students.  Academic accommodations are not retroactive and will begin once you have completed our intake process. 

    Enrollment Steps for DSS Students

    • Complete and submit an application for admissions to Prince George’s Community College to the Admissions Office (BH-126).  There is an admissions application fee of $25:00 dollars for all applicants which is payable by cash, check, credit card or money order.  You may also apply online.
    • Take the ACCUPLACER (Computerized Placement Test) in BH-100.  The test is untimed.  If you require accommodations for testing, please contact the Disability Support Services Office.  The test will assess academic skill levels in reading, English, and mathematics.  You may contact Student Assessment Services (Testing Center) for further information.
    • Apply for financial aid at Prince George's Community College.
    • Register and pay for your courses (Admissions, BH-126/Cashier's, BH-120).  You will need to bring a copy of your schedule and paid receipt to Disability Support Services, BH-124 at least one month prior to the beginning of classes to avoid delays in service.
    • Make an appointment with the DSS program director or rehabilitation counselor specialist to discuss academic accommodations.  You are responsible for bringing current medical or educational documentation to this meeting.  This is usually a doctor's letter indicating your strengths and limitations and/or a psychological or psychoeducational assessment if you have learning disabilities.

    Note:  Students may experience a delay in receiving auxiliary services (i.e., interpreting, notetaking, recorded textbooks, etc.) for both credit and noncredit courses, if they register late and do not provide adequate documentation to support reasonable accommodations. Since an IEP is considered supplemental documentation, you will be asked to provide a complete psychological report or psychoeducational report when requesting academic accommodations. 

    You may direct questions concerning Disability Support Services by E-mail: DSS@pgcc.edu