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Student Accommodations

Eileen Rosewater

mount st. mary's university campus

Happy Fall everyone! We are about halfway through the semester which means we have gotten into a solid routine revolving around classes, sports, clubs, family, friends, etc. As a student with a learning disability, part of my routine includes making sure I am getting all of my required accommodations from my professors.

Before starting my freshman year at the Mount, I made sure to get in contact with Learning Services to discuss my accommodations with them. After taking three days worth of extensive testing that summer, it was decided that I would need extended time on tests and quizzes, as well as the use of a computer in class, and a calculator for math.

I used to be embarrassed having to be accommodated for things that seemed so silly to my peers. Middle school and most of high school I spent being embarrassed by my disability. I got teased a lot and my classmates would ask me questions that I never wanted to answer.

"Why does a teacher always take you out of the room when a test is about to start?"
"Why are you late to recess?"
"How come you get to use a calculator?"

Something I have learned over the years is that not everyone will be supportive and understanding of people who have learning disabilities. It is important to remember that no matter how bad someone tries to make you feel, never let yourself believe what they are saying about your and your abilities. People will try to make you feel guilty by saying that you're cheating by getting extra time or the use of a calculator, but it is not. Accommodations are set to help students who struggle succeed. Every teacher makes it their mission to help their students succeed and reach their full potential. Students with disabilities are no exception. Everyone learns in different ways, and kids with learning disabilities face more difficulties than the average student.

So if you know a student with a learning disability or you are one, always remember that getting accommodations like extended time is no different than someone with bad eyes requiring glasses. No one would say that wearing glasses is cheating. Some people require glasses in order to better succeed, and the same is true of students with learning disabilities.

I hope this post will reach at least one person who can relate to it, and I hope my posts continue to encourage inclusiveness and acceptance for individuals with learning disabilities! 

Eileen Rosewater