Erikson Institute is committed to complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 508, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504, which states: “No otherwise qualified person with a disability in the United States … shall, solely on the basis of disability, be denied access to, or the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity provided by any institution receiving federal financial assistance.” Erikson will also comply with other federal, state, and local laws regarding accommodation of persons with disabilities.
Erikson will neither discriminate against, nor decline to reasonably accommodate, a qualified student or staff member with a disability.
Accessibility of campus facilities
Erikson Institute’s campus is housed in a new facility, completed in August 2008. The campus was designed to meet the stringent ADA and Illinois requirements for accessibility by persons with disabilities in effect at the time of the building’s completion. The space was designed to comply with the following laws and guidelines:
- Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, as updated through 2004;
- Illinois Accessibility Code (IAC) of 1997;
- International Code Council/ANSI A117.1-2003, Accessible and Usable Buildings and Facilities (as referenced and amended by City of Chicago Building Code Chapter 18-11); and
- City of Chicago Building Code 2007, specifically Chapter 18-11.
As such, the entire campus is fully accessible to persons with disabilities.
- The entrance to the ground floor, which is at street level, includes an ADA standard manual door that opens automatically at the push of a button
- The three upper floors are served by elevators
- All bathrooms are equipped with ADA standard stalls in two designs
- Sinks and water fountains are at appropriate heights for persons in wheelchairs
- Hallways are wide and uncluttered
- Wayfinding signage is at an appropriate height for persons using wheelchairs and available in Braille for persons with visual impairment
- Classrooms, seminar rooms, and hallways are equipped with strobe lights to alert persons with hearing impairment of an emergency
- Each floor has an area of rescue assistance for people who are unable to exit by stairs in an emergency
- ADA-accessible parking is available within two blocks of our front entrance
Disability services coordinator
Erikson’s disability services coordinator is responsible for serving the needs of students with disabilities. Contact the coordinator, Colette Davison, dean of students, at (312) 893-7173 or [email protected], or visit her in office 414.
Notice of the availability of services for students with disabilities
The disability services coordinator contacts all students one month prior to the beginning of the fall semester, reminding them of the availability of services and encouraging students with disabilities to set up an appointment to review their eligibility for accommodations. In addition, each course syllabus includes a prominent statement for students with disabilities. The coordinator meets with faculty and with enrollment management, academic success center, IT, distance learning, and library staff as needed to make arrangements for students with disabilities who are approved for accommodations. Faculty are encouraged to refer any student who self-identifies as needing an accommodation to the coordinator. Faculty are also encouraged to talk with students about a referral to the coordinator if they are concerned about the possibility that a student may have a disability. During the orientation to the comprehensive examination, students with a disability are reminded by faculty to request accommodations no later than the deadline for registration. Policies and procedures for obtaining services are included in the student handbook, which is posted on the Erikson portal, as well as public website.
Procedure for applying for accommodation
Any student with a disability wishing to request an accommodation should begin the process as early as possible by contacting the disability services coordinator to arrange a meeting. New students should initiate the process before the beginning of classes or early in the semester. Remember that it may take several weeks to process a request for accommodation. Students seeking accommodation for the comprehensive examination should apply no later than the registration deadline for the exam. Requests for accommodation will be considered on a case-by-case basis. What constitutes a “disability” or a “reasonable accommodation” may vary from individual to individual.
The Institute requires appropriate documentation of the disability and of the need for the requested accommodation. The coordinator will provide guidelines for appropriate documentation. In most cases, such documentation and/or assessments should be no more than three years old. In rare cases, additional documentation or second opinions may be requested. Students who already have documentation should send it to the disability services coordinator at the time they make the accommodation request. Referrals to diagnosticians may be obtained from the disability services coordinator. The documentation should be original, signed, and on official letterhead from a certified professional in the area of the student’s disability. The documentation must address:
- Identification of the specific disability and functional limitation(s)
- Prognosis (permanent or temporary and, if temporary, the anticipated duration)
- Recommendations for specific accommodations.
Once the appropriate documentation is received, the coordinator, in confidential consultation with consultants or faculty as appropriate, will review the documentation to clarify the existence and extent of the disability and the reasonableness of the requested accommodation. The student and the coordinator will then meet and work together to determine appropriate accommodations. If modifications to the curriculum or academic matters are at issue, faculty may also become involved in these discussions.
Students who receive an accommodation for Erikson courses will be provided with a letter explaining all approved accommodations. It is the responsibility of the student to forward the letter to each instructor as soon as possible after receiving it. The letter does not disclose information about the nature of the student’s disability. That information is kept confidential. The student and the coordinator will maintain contact as appropriate for ongoing efforts to accommodate the student.
In rare instances, the Institute may not grant a student’s request for the accommodation. If a student believes that she or he has been discriminated against or denied a reasonable accommodation in violation of this policy, the student may file a written appeal, setting forth the circumstances of the grievance, to the senior vice president for academic affairs/dean of faculty, who will investigate the matter and resolve the appeal in his or her sole discretion.
A written appeal should be made within 45 days of notice of denial of the accommodation request. The student may request a conference with the dean, or the dean’s designee, to discuss the appeal. The student may be assisted during such conference by an appropriate professional with knowledge of the student’s disability, functional limitation(s), and/or the availability of appropriate accommodations. The dean will provide the student with a written copy of her/his determination within 45 days of the date of receipt of the written appeal.