Learning to advocate for yourself will help you achieve your goals in case you are heading off to college with a learning disability. It is important for you to learn how to advocate for yourself in college or vocational school to ensure that you have the accommodations necessary for you to achieve success in your classes, whether you are majoring in a specific course of study or in a general studies program.  It is wise to learn about their disability policies before you choose to attend there when you are considering a college. It is important first to effectively prove you have a disability, to keep good records from grade school. Your educational program was provided for by the IDEA in case you attended a public school. You will need copies of documentation from your program to verify that you are eligible for adaptations and accommodations in college. You may qualify for accommodations under section 504 in programs that are covered by that law in college or vocational school. You will need, at minimum, your most recent IEP or your Section 504 plan. Schools will typically provide one copy of these records upon written request.

Get accommodations and advocate for you in college

Ask for copies of materials in both folders. It s best to begin keep special education records at home during elementary and high school years as always. Keep records of your program of studies, course completion, and grades in your college program. Keep all of your academic records in a three-ring binder. After graduation, use your binder to help you develop a resume. Early on, tell your adviser about your learning disability. Be prepared to explain how your disability affects your ability to participate in class and what adaptations and accommodations you will need to be successful. Ask your adviser to assist you with choosing appropriate courses and referring you to support services available on campus. Public, government funded institutions such as state and regional colleges and vocational programs must comply with Section 504 and are required to make reasonable modifications and adaptations for students with disabilities that significantly impact their education, learning, or physical ability to participate in programs. However, private schools may not be required to make accommodations and adaptations for students with disabilities. Contact an academic adviser or student ombudsman employed by the school to find out if a college or vocational program is required to comply with section 504. Even if they are not required to do so, some private schools will provide accommodations for students with disabilities. Prepare a list of questions in advance. Write your adviser's answers to your questions. Let your adviser know this, and ask if you can record your discussion so you can write down his answers later in case your writing is affected by your learning disability. Get and keep a copy of the institution's policies and requirements related to your specific program. Get a copy of the specific course requirements and their descriptions. Keep them in or with your binder or notebook.