CampusLife

Academic Support & Access Center

Questions?

  • Academic Support & Access Center
    202-885-3360
    Fax: 202-885-1042
    asac@american.edu
    Mary Graydon Center, Room 243

    Monday-Friday 9:00a.m. - 5:00p.m.

Mailing Address

Prospective Students with Learning Disabilities and ADHD

                             

The Academic Support and Access Center (ASAC) provides academic and disability support, and assistance with accommodations, for any student who provides documentation of a learning disability or ADHD. Services include letters of accommodation for faculty, individual sessions with an ASAC counselor, writing assistance, peer tutor referrals (for a modest fee), and study skills workshops and materials. Most of the ASAC counselors are experts in working with students with learning disabilities or ADHD. Some students request to take accommodated exams in the ASAC, while others arrange accommodations with individual professors.

Students may enter the university with or without identifying their disability in the admissions process. However, if they wish to request accommodations, documentation must be provided in advance to the ASAC and they must meet with an ASAC counselor to determine accommodations and become familiar with ASAC procedures.

All students with learning disabilities and ADHD are eligible for the services listed above in the ASAC. The Learning Services Program (LSP), a component of the ASAC, is a small, mainstream program which provides a more structured approach for a small group of students during their first year of college.

The Learning Services Program for First-Year Students with Learning Disabilities

This one-year program offers a network of services primarily designed to assist with the transition to college and with writing skills. Admission to the LSP requires a supplementary application submitted at the same time the student applies to the university. More detailed information about the program and the supplementary application form can be found on the Learning Services Program web page here. There is a one-time fee of $3000 for the Learning Services Program.

The program services include weekly meetings with the LSP coordinator or counselor, a dedicated section of the first-year writing course, a weekly meeting with a writing mentor to support the writing class, free peer tutors, an upperclass LSP mentor, help with assistive technology, and additional activities and resources designed for LSP students.

The availability of the dedicated counselors and writing tutors, and the design and instruction of the writing classes, are the primary factors that distinguish the Learning Services Program from traditional support services for all other students with learning disabilities.

Students who may not want to consider the Learning Services Program include:

  • those diagnosed only with ADHD and not a learning disability
  • those who do not feel they would benefit from a weekly meeting
  • those whose disability does not manifest itself in writing
  • those who successfully manage their time and study strategies on their own
  • those who feel comfortable advocating for themselves and who will seek help when needed

Eligibility for Accommodations

Students with learning disabilities and ADHD are encouraged to identify themselves confidentially to the Academic Support and Access Center as soon as possible once admitted to AU. Upon receipt of documentation, a student must meet with an ASAC counselor to determine a plan that best meets the student's needs. The counselor will discuss services and accommodations available to the student and review procedures at the university.

Confidentiality

Information about a student's disability and accommodations, if any, is treated as confidential under applicable federal and local laws, and is only provided to individuals who are required to receive such information on a need-to-know basis or for whom a student has authorized such a release. In many cases, a student might benefit from communication between an ASAC counselor and an academic advisor or faculty member. A student must grant permission for an ASAC counselor to share information with parents.

Learning Services Program

For nearly 25 years, the Learning Services Program has supported freshmen with learning disabilities as they make the transition to college.

Learn more