Your Transition from High School to College
The law changes drastically for individuals with disabilities as soon as you graduate from high school, whether that is at the age of 18, or when you age out at 22. It is important to understand how your rights and responsibilities will shift when you enter college and beyond. This document provides an overview of your transition from high school to college, including things you can do to help make your college experience a successful one.
Download the Student Rights and Responsibilities Guide
Accommodations and Support Services
Accommodations and support services provide students with documented needs equal access to course materials and extracurricular activities.
Our services include but are not limited to:
- Classroom accommodations
- Extended time for testing and in-class assignments
- Exam proctors
- Sign language interpreters
- Recording devices
- Adaptive software
- FM system
- Screen-reading (JAWS, zoom-text)
- Information and referral to campus and outside agencies
Start Your Request for Accommodations
To establish accommodations, students with documented disabilities must first go through the intake process with their college’s ACCESS Center Director. The process begins with an intake interview, which is a conversation between you and the ACCESS Center Director to discuss you, your disability, and your education. At the end of the intake process, you will know your approved accommodations, and you can request accommodations in your classes.
You can begin the process with an ACCESS Center at any point in the semester to inquire about services, complete an intake, or request accommodations. We recognize that circumstances are constantly changing, but we encourage you to reach out early. You can upload supporting documentation, complete your intake form, and request accommodations all from your my.ccc.edu portal. For step-by-step help, download this guide: Process Guide
If you need help keeping track of where you are in the process, download this checklist: Process Checklist
For college-specific information about testing policies and procedures, contact your college’s ACCESS Center.
Other Accommodations and Assistance
Placement Test Accommodations
- If you plan to take a placement test at one of the City Colleges, please contact that college’s ACCESS Center prior to taking your exam and provide supporting documentation of your disability. Documentation guidelines can be found below.
- Students with disabilities who need assistance exiting the building in the event of an evacuation should connect with the ACCESS Center to make sure their class schedule is on the ACCESS Centers’ Evacuation List. Locations of students with disabilities are kept in the Security Office so the Fire Department can locate and assist students during an evacuation.
SUCCESS Coaching for CPS Grads
- City Colleges also provides SUCCESS coaching for recent Chicago Public Schools graduates who have an IEP or 504 Plan. This service is offered in partnership with the Chicago Roadmap. To sign up to be contacted by a SUCCESS coach, please fill out this form. For more information, please contact Dani Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Documentation Guidelines for Accommodation Requests
Supporting documentation must include:
- Diagnosis determined by a licensed physician or primary health care provider, psychologist, audiologist, speech therapist, learning disability specialist, or other appropriate professional.
- An evaluation of the impact on the individual of both the diagnosed condition and any prescribed medications.
- Specific details regarding the disability(s) and in the manner and degree in which any functional limitation(s) impede performance (e.g., reading, writing, walking, speaking, seeing, and abstract reasoning) in order for the ACCESS Center Director to approve appropriate accommodations.
- Dated original letterhead including contact information of the appropriate professional diagnosing the disability that should include whether the condition is short-term (less than 90 days) or long-term (more than 90 days).
Individualized Education Plans and 504 Plans are acceptable documents. If you have any questions about document eligibility, reach out to your college’s ACCESS Center for assistance.