Brandman University is committed to making its educational opportunities accessible to qualified individuals with disabilities in accordance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990/Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment of 2008 (ADAA). By providing full access to qualified students with disabilities, the university demonstrates its belief that the community will benefit from the skills and talents of these individuals.
These policies apply to every facet of the University's operations, including but not limited to admissions, academic requirements, financial aid, or any other school-administered program or service.
Brandman University has developed programs and resources to monitor and to assure compliance with these policies. These include The Office of Disability Services, a Director of Disability Services, and an ADA/Section 504 Committee. These resources are designed to offer individualized assessment and to provide accommodations in the most integrated setting appropriate.
The Director of ADA Services, who is a standing member of the University's ADA Advising Board, administers these policies. Information concerning these policies is maintained in the Office of Disability Services. Summaries and references to these policies are provided in the University's application and admissions materials, and its Student Handbook, as well as its Faculty manual and Staff and Administrative Handbook. Individuals can also obtain information about these policies through the University's Director of Disability Services, Dr. Loren O’Connor.
Confidential information in student files will not be released except in the following circumstances:
Brandman University strictly prohibits any form of discrimination against individuals with disabilities in its programs.
To comply with Section 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)/Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment Act of 2008 (ADAA), and other applicable laws, the University will provide, as necessary, reasonable and readily achievable accommodations, including academic adjustments and auxiliary aids, to ensure otherwise qualified students with disabilities access to the University's services, programs, and activities. Accommodations will not be provided if they fundamentally alter the nature of the program, if they would be unduly burdensome, either financially or administratively, to the University or if they would result in lowering academic and other essential performance standards. Students with disabilities who require accommodations must make those needs known to The Office of Disability Services as soon as possible. Students are responsible for making these needs known in a timely fashion and for providing documentation.
The University seeks to accommodate students with disabilities on an individual basis. Students are given reasonable and necessary accommodations based on specific information and assessment data documented by a professional from outside the University, who in the judgment of the University, is qualified to provide such information and assessment. The Office of Disability Services makes available information as to the existence and location of services, activities, and facilities that are accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities.
Applicants are not required to notify the University of a disability or need for accommodations prior to admission. Individuals who need accommodations in order to submit an application are invited to contact Brandman University.
Following admission, any student who, because of a disability, needs accommodations with respect to any policy, practice, service, or benefit, is requested to notify the University and provide appropriate information including the reason for the request and the specific type of accommodation requested. In order to provide the accommodations on a timely basis, it is recommended that new students inform the University of the need for accommodations well in advance of their matriculation. Please contact The Office of Disability Services.
A student requesting accommodations because of a disability will be required to provide professional verification by a licensed physician, psychologist, audiologist, or other professional health care provider who, in the opinion of the University, is qualified in the diagnosis and assessment of the disability. The verification must reflect the student's present level of functioning of the major life activity affected by the disability. The student must provide the verification documentation to The Office of Disability Services if they wish to register for disability services and accommodations. The cost of obtaining the professional verification will be borne by the student. If the initial verification is deemed incomplete or inadequate to determine the present extent of the disability and appropriate accommodations, the University reserves the right to require supplemental assessment of the disability.
Requests for accommodations and services will be reviewed and assessed on an individualized basis by The Office of Disability Services. The University will offer accommodations to otherwise qualified students and applicants unless doing so would fundamentally alter the nature of its academic programs, impose an undue financial or administrative burden, or would result in lowering academic and other essential performance standards.
Medical and clinical information provided to the University by students as part of a request for accommodations is treated as confidential under applicable laws and school policies. Such information is provided only to individuals who are privileged to receive such information on a need to know basis. Such confidential records shall be separately maintained by the University's Office of Disability Services. These records shall be archived apart from official transcripts and educational records. All documents produced by consultants in the performance of services for the University will remain the property of Brandman University.
The Office of Disability Services is committed to ensuring that all information regarding a student is maintained as confidential as required or permitted by law. Any information collected is used for the benefit of the student. Student information may include grades, assessment data, biographical history, disability information, case notes, and other related documents. Procedures about the treatment of such information have been adopted by The Office of Disability Services and are rigorously followed.
No one has immediate access to student files at The Office of Disability Services except the office staff. Disability related information is to be treated as medial information is treated. For example, University faculty and staff members do not have a right or a need to access diagnostic or other information regarding a student's disability. They need only to know what accommodations and services are necessary or appropriate to meet the student's disability related needs. If a student has requested an accommodation, the student will be informed as to what information is being provided to the faculty or staff regarding the request.
The University does not discriminate on the basis of a disability. Any information concerning an applicant's disability provided during the admissions process is voluntary or optional. It is maintained in accordance with laws relating to confidentiality. The University uses this information only for the purpose of avoiding past performance difficulties that the students may have experienced due to disabilities as reflected in their academic records. No limitations are placed on the number or proportion of persons with disabilities who may be admitted or enrolled.
The University strictly prohibits any form of retaliation against any student or applicant who requests an accommodation, reports or participates in the investigation of a complaint, or otherwise exercises rights secured by this policy.
Students who have concerns about a granted service, accommodation, modification of a University practice or requirement, are encouraged to bring those concerns or complaints to the attention of the appropriate campus personnel, e.g., faculty, campus director, or professors for immediate resolution. Complaints or appeals related specifically to services for students with disabilities provided by The Office of Disability Services- Accessible Education also known as The Office should be immediately brought to the attention of the appropriate campus personnel. The Director of The Office of Disability Services will review the matter and attempt to informally resolve the situation. In the event that the matter cannot be resolved, students have the right to use the University's grievance/appeal procedures.
All grievances or appeals must be in writing. The complaint should include the name and address of the person filing the complaint and describe the alleged complaint or concern. For matters involving a course accommodation or a requested service the director will review and investigate the complaint. The investigation while informal but thorough, will afford the student an opportunity to submit evidence relevant to the complaint. In a timely manner The Office will review the matter and respond to the student. Matters involving a petition for substitution of a University practice or academic requirement will also be forwarded to The Office. The Director within The Office will review the petition and forward the petition along with their recommendation to the Standards Committee. The ADA/Section 504 Committee will approve or deny the petition. If the petition is denied the student may make a personal appeal to the Student Standards Committee.
Any petition, grievance or appeal denied by The Office of Disability or the ADA Committee may further appeal directly to the Office of the Vice Chancellor of Enrollment and Student Affairs for reconsideration. If the student is dissatisfied with decision of the Office the Vice Chancellor of Enrollment and Student Affairs he/she may file a complaint with the University's Equal Employment Opportunity Officer (EOO). The EEO will investigate the complaint in accordance with the procedures as set forth in the University's Harassment and Discrimination Policy.
Although students are encouraged to attempt to resolve grievances using the University process, they have the right to file any grievance directly with the Office for Civil Rights (OCR). Complaints filed with the OCR must be filed within 180 days from the time the incident occurred.