DSPS Eligibility Information
Who is Eligible?
To be eligible for services one must:
- Complete an Application for Services
- Complete a Student Educational Contract
- Provide professional documentation of a disability, including functional limitations, signed by an appropriate professional.
- The documented disability must substantially limit one or more major life activities and present a barrier to the learning process.
- Students receiving services through DSPS must be enrolled in classes at Contra Costa College.
It is the student’s responsibility to request their accommodations through DSPS every semester while at Contra Costa College.
Assessment and Documentation
Professional documentation of a disability is essential for determining barriers in education and providing accommodations or services. It should be current and include enough information to assist the DSPS department to determine the accommodations needed to permit equal access to educational opportunities. Documentation can be obtained through assessment by one of our Learning Disability or DSPS Counselors. Colleges and universities require disability documentation that shows the student has a disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.
If the student has an Individual Education Plan (IEP) from high school, new or additional documentation may be required because the ADA and 504 laws differ from the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), which only applies to students with disabilities in K-12 education.
Services are provided to students with a wide range of disabilities which include:
Any orthopedic or physical impairment that causes a serious limitation in locomotion or motor functions in the educational environment. Some general categories and examples of mobility impairments include: impairments caused by disease, impairments caused by a congenital anomaly, impairments from other causes (such as amputation, spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy, arthritis, degenerative disc disease, repetitive disc disease and repetitive stress injury).
Total or partial loss of sight that adversely affects a student’s educational performance.
Blindness: Visual acuity of 10/200 or less in the better eye after correction; or a loss so severe that it no longer serves as a major channel for information processing.
Partial Sightedness/Low Vision: Visual acuity of 20/70 or less in the better eye after correction with vision still capable of serving as a major channel for information.
Total deafness or a hearing loss so severe that a student is impaired in processing information through hearing, with or without amplification.
Medical deafness: a total or partial loss of hearing function so severe that it no longer serves as a major channel for information.
Hard of hearing: A functional loss in hearing which is still capable of serving as a major channel for information processing.
A persistent condition of a presumed neurological impairment. This dysfunction continues despite instruction in standard classroom situations. Learning disabilities are exhibited by all the following: average to above-average intellectual ability, severe processing deficit(s), severe aptitude-achievement discrepancy(ies); and measured achievement in an instructional or employment setting. Eligibility for services under this disability must be verified using the California Community College Learning Disability Eligibility Model.
Acquired Brain Injury
An acquired injury to the brain caused by external or internal trauma, resulting in total or partial functional disability adversely affecting or limiting a student’s educational performance by impairing: cognition, information processing, reasoning, abstract thinking, judgment, problem solving; language and/or speech; memory and/or attention; sensory perceptual and/or motor abilities; psycho-social behavior; physical functions. There are many causes for ABI including stroke, aneurysm, or head injury due to accident or assault.
Developmentally Delayed Learner
A student who exhibits the following: below average intellectual function and potential for measurable achievement in instructional and employment settings.
Persistent psychological or psychiatric disorder, emotional or mental illness that adversely affects educational performance. Psychological disability is a condition which is listed in the American Psychiatric Association Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fourth Edition (DSM IV) or reflects a psychiatric or psychological condition that interferes with a major life activity or poses a functional limitation in the educational setting. Examples of psychological disabilities include but are not limited to Depression, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Bi-Polar Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, Schizophrenia, Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Asperger’s Syndrome and Autism.
All other verifiable disabilities and health-related limitations adversely affecting educational performance but not falling into any of the other disabilities categories. Examples include environmental illness, heart conditions, sickle cell anemia, epilepsy, acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), HIV, diabetes, and repetitive stress syndrome.
Although DSPS works primarily with students with permanent or ongoing disabilities, students with temporary disabilities due to accident, illness, surgery or other circumstances may also quality for DSPS services on a temporary basis if the disability substantially interferes with a student’s ability to participate successfully in the academic environment.