Students with special needs can receive help that levels the playing field for all students in school.
The Disability Resource Center (DRC) provides a variety of services for students with special needs to help make their time at Salt Lake Community College more productive.
“The DRC serves close to 2,500 students a semester. This is more than any other college in the state,” Rod Romboy, Director of Disability Resource Center said.
SLCC students with special needs are expected to pass their classes just the same as non-special need students. The DRC offers a number of services to students to make this possible.
The DRC provides adaptive equipment including tape recorders, special spellers for the blind, talking calculators, specialized keyboards and laptops. The DRC also provides voice recognition software and test taking software. Other services offered are examination accommodations and adaptive furniture such as chairs, tables and adjustable tables. The DRC does not offer tutoring services, personal aides and services or transportation.
“They help me with studying and staying on task,” Heather Ryan, physiology student said. “So far my experience has been really good.”
Testing accommodations are the most common need at the DRC. The DRC conducted 1,000 tests last semester. The center has testing rooms and special testing accommodations for students needing them. The center receives tests from the instructors; the student then takes the test and the center returns the test to the instructor for grading.
Another common services the DRC provides is note taking. The center hires about 400 students each semester as note takers. Students that suffer from ADHD or other forms of learning disabilities may be in need of help with note taking. Also, note taking is beneficial to blind students. Students that have a need for an interpreter in class will also need a note taker because they will be concentrating on watching the interpreter. Note takers earn $40 per class. The $40 is paid in credits at the college bookstore.
Students with special needs are able to register early through the center. This is offered so there will be time to arrange appropriate accommodations for the student. The sooner the class is chosen the easier it is to arrange accommodations. For example, a student with mobility issues may need to make sure they are enrolled in a class on the first floor and so they have time to get from one class to another.
“We want to make sure that students are able to go from one class to another, by making sure that classes are on the same campus and in the same building as much as possible,” Larry Landward, Advisor at the DRC said.
There are DRC offices at both the Taylorsville Redwood Campus and at the South City Campus. However, students can receive services from the Disability Resource Center at all campuses.