The Best Colleges and Universities for Disabled Students

Many colleges and universities offer special services, housing accommodations, and special accommodations in class. However, not all schools create special programs and services for their disabled student population. The following is a list of the best colleges and universities for disabled students in the United States that have gone beyond the minimum requirements of the Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Alabama—Samford University

Samford University offers a separate application process for students with disabilities. The applications are handled directly through the Disability Resources office. In addition, the university emphasizes accessible buildings throughout the campus, strives to provide accommodations for students with disabilities, and has a peer notetaker program for individuals who are unable to take notes during class.

Alaska—University of Alaska Anchorage

Providing equal opportunities for students who experience disabilities is a campus-wide responsibility and commitment. This includes curricular and co-curricular programs, facilities, services, and activities. DSS coordinates support services for UAA students who experience disabilities. DSS also promotes a Universal Design approach to encourage a barrier-free culture for everyone and assists in finding reasonable adjustments when barriers are identified. Accommodations include alternative format materials, animals, assistive technology, housing, interpreters, note-taking, and testing.

California—Diablo Valley College

The DVC Disability Support Services provides instruction and services designed to increase access for students with disabilities. Their Disability Support Services program includes appropriate support services, curriculum, instruction, and adaptive technology.

Florida–Barry University—CAL Program

The Glenn Hubert Learning Center is an academic resource for undergrad and grad students looking for assistance with college-level reading, writing, and math. The Center for Advanced Learning (CAL) provides specialized support services for students with learning disabilities, including tutorials, workshops, seminars, course support, diagnostic testing, and placement testing.

Florida—Beacon University

Beacon is a college for students who learn differently, including those with learning disabilities, dyslexia, and ADHD. This accredited college offers both bachelor and associate degrees, in tandem with learning specialists, peer tutoring, study groups, and counseling. Students learn to build essential skills, identify learning tools, and develop strategies that are effective for them.

Illinois—De Paul University

The Center for Students with Disabilities provides reasonable academic accommodations, such as adaptive equipment, assistive technology, and exam readers and transcribers. They also have Learning Specialist Clinician Services available for a fee to help students who wish to further develop academic skills. Information on scholarships and career opportunities is also available.

Indiana–Anderson University

Anderson University offers The Bridges Program to students with specific learning disabilities and/or ADHD. This is a two-credit-hour college survival skills/study skills course paired with a lighter course load during their first trimester.

Iowa—Iowa State University

Student Accessibility Services (SAS) coordinates reasonable accommodations for eligible students including lecture notes, assistance animals, housing and dining accommodations, medical parking permits, and access to an exam accommodation center.

Massachusetts—American International College

The mission of the Center for Accessibility Services and Academic Accommodations (CSAA) is to, "create an accessible, inclusive, sustainable learning environment where disabilities are recognized as an aspect of diversity that is integral to the campus community and to society."

Massachusetts—Boston University

The Office of Disability Services provides reasonable accommodations, auxiliary aids and services, accessible housing, dietary accommodations, academic support, and more for students with blindness and low vision, learning and attentional disabilities, physical disabilities, psychological disabilities, and deafness or hard of hearing.

Massachusetts—Lesley University

Lesley University's Disability Services strive to provide "equal or equally effective alternative access to academic, social, cultural, and recreational programs for all qualified individuals with disabilities."

Michigan—Finlandia University—TRIO Program

First generation college students with disability or financial needs can apply to participate in the TRIO program at Finlandia University. Participants in the program benefit from academic and personal counseling, financial aid assistance and planning, financial literacy education, professional tutoring, peer mentoring, enrichment activities, service opportunities, and more.

Minnesota—Augsburg College—CLASS Program

The Center for Learning and Adaptive Student Services (CLASS) is available for student with ADHD, mental health disabilities, learning disabilities, physical/sensory impairments, chronic health conditions, or are on the autism spectrum. Disability specialists provide individual support, determination of appropriate accommodation, instructing in learning strategies, help with time management and organization skills, and assistance with course selection.

Minnesota—St. Catherine University—Resources for Disabilities Center

Disability Resources at the O'Neill Center provides services and accommodations including classroom and test accommodation, books and other materials in alternate formats, assistive technology, clinical accommodations planning, weekly meetings with disability resources staff, and referral to campus and community resources.

Nebraska—Creighton University

Creighton University provides disability services such as academic adjustments, note takers, accessible campus housing, mobility orientation, and accommodation for architectural and structural barriers. Other campus resources include counseling, advising and scheduling assistance, and time management and study skills education.

New Jersey—Centenary College—Project ABLE and STEP Ahead

Centenary University offer Academic Bridges for Learning Effectiveness (ABLE), "an educationally based, comprehensive learning support program designed specifically for students with psychological, learning, and neurological differences." Also available is their Summer Transition and Enrichment Program, an "intense four-week residential pre-college program designed to enhance the development of a student's self-advocacy, independence, interpersonal, and academic skills."

New Jersey—Fairleigh Dickinson University—LD Student Program

The Regional Center for Learning Disabilities, according to the website, provides a "structured program of academic support, personalized advisement, and counseling services." Support services involve a "variety of learning techniques, including metacognitive strategies to build student confidence and performance in all content areas."

New York—Adelphi University—Learning Resource Program

The Learning Resource Program provides individualized sessions provided by educational and counseling professionals that focus on the strengths, talents, and needs of students with documented learning disabilities and/or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

New York—Alfred University

The Fred Gertz Center for Academic Success (CAS) provides academic consultation, tutoring, and the provision of other resources and accommodations for students with physical, psychological, and learning disabilities.

New York—Iona College—College Assistance Programs

The College Assistance Program is a fee-based program with support and services for students with learning disabilities, AD/HD, traumatic brain injury, or who are on the autism spectrum.

New York—SUNY Cortland

SUNY Cortland emphasizes accessibility on campus. They provide Adapted Physical Education Community Programs as well as a wide variety of adaptive sports, including wheelchair sports, sled hockey, and skating. Disabled students have access to assisted technology, eLearning classes, and accessible academic buildings.

New York—SUNY Empire State College—Center for Distance Learning

The SUNY Empire State College Center for Distance Learning may provide disabled students with another college option by providing degrees to students who complete their studies completely online.

Ohio—Mount St. Joseph University—EXCEL Project

Project EXCEL provides a structured support system for students diagnosed with a learning difference and who have average to superior intellectual ability. Academic support, executive function coaching, and help navigating new social situations round out the program.

Ohio—Kent State University Tuscarawas

The Office of Academic Services and Student Accessibility Services provides accommodations such as parking, priority class registration, scribe/writer referral, and on-campus assistive technology, for students with a variety of disabilities.

Pennsylvania—Clarion University

Disability Support Services provides a coordinator for students to receive reasonable accommodations.

Pennsylvania—Community College of Allegheny County

The Promoting Academic Success (PAS) program is a one-credit course for those with learning differences to learn effective strategies for transitioning from a high school setting to post-secondary education. The Learning Disabilities Learning Community is a special program for those with learning disabilities who score into the college's developmental-level math, reading, or English courses. Students are taught by professors with extensive experience with the needs of students with learning disabilities and attention disorders.

South Carolina—College of Charleston

College of Charleston Center for Disability Services/SNAP (Students Needing Access Parity) provides assistance and guidance to students with disabilities and helps educate the faculty, staff, and other students about disabilities.

Texas—Baylor University

The Baylor University Office of Access and Learning Accommodation is proud of its long history of inclusion of students with disabilities. They help students to determine eligibility, collaborate with faculty and administration to implement accommodations, and implement various services and support.

Texas—University of Texas at Austin

The University of Texas at Austin has a wide variety of services available to disabled students. Some of these services include adaptive text, adaptive testing, Communication Access Realtime Translation, and sign language interpreters. The SSD office is very active with the campus community, offering presentations and training to other campus organizations (such as campus police), to ensure a safe and inclusive community for all students.

Vermont—Johnson State College

Academic support is provided for students with disabilities.

Vermont—Landmark College—Learning Disabilities Focus

Landmark College is a college completely run with LD students in mind; unlike other colleges, the entire focus of the faculty is teaching to students with learning disabilities.

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Article Sources
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  2. University of Alaska Anchorage. Disability support services.

  3. Diablo Valley College. Disability support services.

  4. Barry University. Glenn Hubert learning center.

  5. Beacon College. A quick guide to Beacon College.

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  7. Anderson University. Disability services for students (DSS).

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  9. American International College. Center for accessibility services and academic accommodations.

  10. Boston University. Disability and access services.

  11. Lesley University. Disability services.

  12. Finlandia University. TRIO student services.

  13. Augsburg University. Class disability resources.

  14. St. Catherine University. Disability resources.

  15. Creighton University. Disability services.

  16. Centenary University. Project ABLE program.

  17. Centenary University. STEP Ahead program.

  18. Fairleigh Dickinson University. Regional Center for Learning Disabilities.

  19. Adelphi University. Learning Resource Program.

  20. Alfred University. Fred Gertz Center for Academic Success.

  21. Iona College. College Assistance Program.

  22. SUNY Cortland. Adapted physical education community programs.

  23. SUNY Cortland. Disability resources office.

  24. Mount St. Joseph University. Project EXCEL.

  25. Kent State Tuscarawas. Student accessibility services.

  26. Clarion University. Disability support.

  27. Community College of Allegheny College. Programs for students with disabilities.

  28. College of Charleston. Center for disability services/SNAP.

  29. Baylor University. About OALA (Office of Access and Learning Accommodations).

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  31. Northern Vermont University. Disability services FAQ.

  32. Landmark College. The college of choice for students who learn differently.