Quick Links:

  • How to Apply for Services
  • Blind/Visual Impairments
  • Deaf/Hearing Impairments
  • Learning Disabilities
  • Physical, Brain Injury or Health Impairments
  • Psychiatric Conditions
  • Services NOT Provided

  • How to Apply for Services

    Visually impaired and legally blind students may receive accommodation acuity may hinder a student's ability to perform at a level comparable to visual students. Students must have corrected vision no better than 20/70 for a diagnosis of a visual impairment. After a visual impairment is diagnosed as stable, vision may continue to deteriorate.

    Students who are legally blind have less than 20/200 vision in the better eye or a very limited field of vision. Their vision may be blurred, cloudy, double, or spotted. Sometimes, peripheral vision or central vision may be impaired. Students experiencing any of these visual problems should contact the center.

    The following are helpful hints for blind/vision impaired students to follow when services are needed:

    • Request services 1- 2 weeks before the semester starts or the first week of the semester.
    • Obtain reading list and syllabi from the instructor prior to the semester. The center will Braille, enlarge, read and tape-record the material.
    • Make arrangements with your assigned counselor to receive examination assistance, e.g., proctor, scribe, enlarged copies, etc.
    • Make every effort to arrive early to class so you can sit in the front row of each class.
    • Tape lecture notes and recruit an in-class note taker. The center will pay current minimum wage if a volunteer is not recruited.
    • Discuss with your instructor alternate assignments if a specific task is impossible for you to complete.

    Whatever the degree of impairment, blind or visually impaired students are expected to participate fully in the classroom setting. The Accessibility Center may be used a as a resource to assist you in accomplishing academic goals and objectives while attending Northeastern Illinois University.

    The major challenge facing deaf/hearing impaired students is communication, and various communication methods are often utilized. In academic settings, speech reading (lip reading), manual communication (sign language or finger spelling), and writing are often needed. The Accessibility Center staff will assist students and their faculty instructor with identifying the specific communication method that best facilitates their academic goals and objectives within a class room environment.

    The following are helpful hints for deaf/impaired impaired students to follow when services are needed:

    • You have the right to an interpreter for all classes and class-related events.
    • In order to ensure accurate and complete notes are provided, the Accessibility Center will provide your note taker with access to a Xerox machine or provide the note taker with a carbon note book.
    • Closed captioning assistance or a transcript of videotapes used in the classroom may also be provided.
    • Please turn in your schedule as early as possible to the Accessibility Center to ensure guaranteed service. The Deadline date is (3) three weeks before the semester begins. After that time, an interpreter will be scheduled as soon as one can be obtained.
    • Arrive early to class and arrange chairs for yourself and the interpreter. Unless there are other extenuating circumstances, the interpreter should sit next to the instructor.
    • Absences: Please inform the Accessibility Center as soon as you know you will not be attending class. At least (5) five hours notice is required for us to contact the interpreter. After two (2) absences without informing the interpreter and the Accessibility Center, your service will be canceled. You will have to meet with the director of the Accessibility Center before interpreter services are resumed.
    • Tardiness: The interpreter is contracted to wait outside the class 15 minutes for a 50-minute class, and 20-30 minutes for 75-minute or longer classes.
    • Dropped Classes: The Accessibility Center must be informed if an interpreter-assisted class is dropped.

    The Accessibility Center is in collaboration with the student schedules all auxiliary aides, e.g., interpreters, note takers, readers, etc. services prior to the start of each semester. Confidentiality guidelines are adhered to by center staff and student interaction between aide and student are not discussed.

    Students diagnosed with this disability may experience difficulty comprehending reading, writing, mathematic calculations, listening and speaking. Since the disability is not discernable by looking at an individual, students with one or all of these processing deficits often complain how people may perceive them as stupid or lazy. They are neither, but instead learn or process information differently. NEIU does not have a separate learning disability program but provides "reasonable accommodations" in compliance with federal mandates.

    Each psychological evaluation submitted to the center must be complete. Each test report should be signed and dated by a psychologist, with the diagnoses and tests administered as part of the report. Services provided to the student must also be clearly depicted in the evaluation provided by the student to the center. Further, in order to receive accommodations, the psychological evaluation submitted by the student can not be any older than three years from the students' Accessibility Center self-identification date.

    The following are helpful hints students with learning disabilities to follow when services are needed:

    • Academic modifications may be needed to facilitate learning; therefore, please be able to discuss your individual learning style, learning deficits and how to address them.
    • If students experience difficulty in oral language please request written information, visual aids, and provide staff and faculty with feedback.
    • Request assistance from center staff if you have difficulties with grammar and sentence structure
    • Comprehension problems with mathematics should be discussed with your assigned Accessibility Center counselor
    • Contact the center office if you experience poor organization, time management, outlining, exam preparation, recalling and/or memorizing problems
    • If you need the auxiliary aid support of class note takers, technological and adaptive equipment assistance, tape recorded lectures, extended time on exams, taped books, tutors, and/or readers please contact your assigned Accessibility Center counselor.

    Accommodations for difficulties in study skills are provided by the Accessibility Center, but difficulties in academic supports are provided by the NEIU Learning Center which is located in the Library, 4th Floor.

    Students with physical, brain injury and/or health impairments are entitled to an accessible education at the post-secondary level. Their disorders or disabilities may be temporary or permanent and interfere with their learning. There are many types of physical, brain injury, and/or health impairments which may require adaptation of the physical environment.

    The most common of these impairments include but are not limited to:

    • Brain injury and neuromuscular impairments include strokes, epilepsy, and cerebral palsy. Degenerative conditions include muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, and cystic fibrosis. Spinal cord injuries may occur from a broken neck or back and spinal bifida.
    • Orthopedic problems consist of amputations, deformities of the spine or limbs, cleft palate, and club foot.
    • Chronic health problems include diabetes, hemophilia, heart disease, arthritis, asthma, severe allergies, cancer, lupus, sickle cell anemia, leukemia, digestive disorders, traumatic brain injury and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).

    The following are helpful hints for students with physical, brain and/or health impairments to follow when services are needed:

    • Request services 1-2 weeks before the semester starts or the first week of the semester.
    • Allow yourself enough extended time for completion of assignments and exams with appropriate Accessibility Center staff assistance.
    • Arrange for technical assistance with center staff, e.g. large button calculator, adapted writing utensils, computer software, communication device/boards, tape recorders, etc.
    • Pair with class peers for note taking and study groups.
    • Consider the time factor for getting to and from classroom buildings and discuss problems with center staff and/or faculty instructor.
    • Avoid sitting in classroom aisles or the back of the room.
    • Contact the instructor if you are tardy or absent because of illness, transportation, elevator and/or wheelchair malfunction, and/or inclement weather.

    • Psychiatric impairments or mental illnesses cover a myriad of disorders, and they are not discernable to the eye. Some students suffer from manic depression, panic, bi-polar, and anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, depression, paranoia, compulsive and obsessive behaviors. These conditions have the propensity to alter attention spans, concentration, personality, behavior, hygiene, or self-confidence. Students diagnosed with any of these disorders may experience an inability to develop or maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships with peers; inappropriate types of behavior or feelings under normal circumstances; heightened anxieties, fears, or suspicions; and/or difficulty concentrating and making decisions.

      Individuals who self-identify as having a psychiatric impairment should follow the following guidelines when requesting accommodations through the Accessibility Center:

      • Before or early in the semester, students should discuss with center staff the type of services they need in order to successfully compete in the academic setting. Early accommodations can alleviate some of the stress that stems from attending post-secondary education environments.
      • Arrive early to secure a seat near the door to avoid distractions if you have to leave. However if you know you will have to stand and stretch due to an adverse reaction to medicine please discuss this problem with your instructor when you self-identify in his/her office.
      • Request note taking assistance, taped class lectures, and exams in a distraction free room and/or in adapted formats, if needed.
      • Contact your Accessibility Center counselor about contacting the Health Service Office on campus to store your medication during the semester, if needed.
      • If hospitalization is needed, please contact your instructors and Accessibility Center staff counselor.
        • The Accessibility Center staff can help you transition smoothly into the university setting. Do not hesitate to seek out our services. We are here to assist you in having a positive post-secondary experience and to secure any reasonable academic supports that are needed to accomplish your goals.

          • Psychological Testing to Determine Learning Disabilities
          • Personal Assistance or Attendant Care Needed for Eating, Walking, or Using the bathroom
          • Orientation and Mobility Training for Visually Impaired or Blind Students
          • Transportation to and from School
          • Taped Lecture