Paths to Freel Library and Bowman Hall

Disability Resources

Accessibility is a core value at MCLA. Everyday our staff work with students who have a variety of disabilities ~ providing academic support services, individualized accomodations, and self-advocacy guidance. 


Helping build pathways to learning for students with disabilities.

MCLA is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to students with documented disabilities. We work to provide students with equitable access to all MCLA programs and services. Our philosophy and programs assist eligible students in fostering independence in college to the fullest extent possible, embracing self-advocacy, and in developing skills to transition and succeed in their careers. We believe that disability is a natural part of human variation and an essential aspect of diversity. The Office of Disability Resources provides students with individualized support services based on the nature of the documented disability. An accessible testing center proctors exams for students with approved testing accommodations. Disability Resources also provides one-on-one personalized training  on general technology and on assistive technology hardware/software.


The start strong program celebrates 5 years ...

and continues to offer an early start to success for first year students. Start Strong introduces students to college campus life while diving deeper into some of the common transition challenges experienced by first year students,  Students will gain  a more in-depth understanding of what to expect in college and what would be expected of them, complete a formal assessment of their study habits/skills and hear tips from student leaders on how to balance school with other demands. 

Fall 2024 Start Strong Program 

Get an early start on YOUR SUCCESS. Students will be expected to complete a series of self-paced modules built in Canvas throughout the first 4 weeks of the semester. A weekly in-person  "roadside" checkpoint  will bring all participants together for fun and activities. The Start Strong Program uses the metaphor of a road trip for getting through college’s tougher transition challenges. This metaphorical road trip gives students an entirely different way to see the college experience. So grab your backpack, jump aboard and roll down the window.

It’s Road Trip Time! 





How To Register and Request Reasonable Accommodations

To request reasonable accommodations:

1. Complete the registration form provided below. Upload your completed form and email to  Disability Resources will reach out and schedue a time to meet with you. If you are a returning student, please complete the Accommodation Request form and make an appointment with Disability Resource staff. 

2. New students will need to provide current and comprehensive documentation. Sources of information used for determining a disability and/or accommodations may include a student’s self-report and documentation from qualified evaluators or professionals.  If you participated in an individudalized education program in high school, this document can help identify the type of accommodations you may need; however, it will not suffice as proof of disability.

WHAT IF I DONT HAVE DOCUMENTATION?  Our office understands that there are a variety of factors that can impact your ability to obtain documentation.  Please let us know if you are unable to access supporting documentation. You may still be eligible for accommodations based on the information that you provide to us and our interactive interview. Plese note that in some cases we may request supporting documentation before accommodations can be approved. 

3. Meet with a Disability Resource representative.  In this meeting, you will provide your documentation and concrete details about the challenges/barriers you face. You will also discuss the type of accommodations you need in order to thrive in college. 

Success Coaching 

Success coaches provide one-on-one support to students throughout their first year at MCLA.  Coaches work in partnership with students to improve academic skills, to identify resources, and to address any obstacles to academic success. Success coaches are currently available via TEAMS or in-person. If you would like to opt into the coaching program please email or call us at (413)662-5314.

Don't forget to ask about taking the LASSI (Learning & Study Skill Assessment). Become more aware of your strengths and what areas you can work on to improve your academic and  study skills. 

Assistive Technology Center

The Disability Resource Office provides screenings on a variety of accessible general use technologies as well as assistive technologies and software applications. Screenings provide an opportunity for students and the Disability Resource staff to review and discuss various  technologies and software that may be useful. Screenings are also a chance to discuss any current or past challenges with different technology.  Introductory sessions on how to get started are available by request.

An Assistive Technology (AT) Center is now open in the Mark Hopkins Computer Lab located in Room 111. The AT Center offers a variety of assistive technology hardware and software tools designed to meet the needs of students with various disabilities. 

100 Level Gallery

The 100 Level Gallery is a space where artists from underrepresented backgrounds can showcase their art. We aim to create an environment that not only serves as a platform or the display of their work, but also facilitates a valuable experience within the context of a gallery setting. 

Helpful Links and Resources for Students 

Students with Disabilities Preparing for Postsecondary Education: Know Your Rights and Responsibilities This publication from the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights is relevant to  any postsecondary student going to any college or university. Be familiar with the information in this booklet as you begin to look at colleges and universities for your student. 

Auxiliary Aids and Services for Postsecondary Students with Disabilities This booklet can give you more specific information about the types of assistance that are generally available to students with disabilities at the postsecondary level. 

Family Guide to Transition Services in Massachusetts,   Brought to you in partnership by the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission and the Federation for Children with Special Needs. 

make it mcla

Dear Prospective Student: The Office of Disability Resources understands that student's rights and responsibilities change considerably from high school to college. We want you to make a successful transition. We welcome prospective students with disabilities to schedule a meeting with us to discuss some very important transition items ! We also know that students with health conditions and physical disabilities are often assessing different aspects of campus life than their non-disabled peers when they go on a college tour. They might be considering:                                                                             

  • Is the campus accessible for me?
  • Can I navigate campus independently?
  • Will I be able to receive accommodations that will allow me to be successful?
  • Does the campus have a student health center?

Take a virtual tour today. 

If you are interested in scheduling an Early Transition meeting please contact Disability Resources at (413) 662-5314.