Accommodative Services

Help Yourself

Students with disabilities who use accommodations graduate, on average, at a higher rate.

Ready for College?

Consult this guide to measure your skills in the five essential areas critical for college success.


Paul Smith’s College recognizes its responsibility to provide equal access to opportunity for students with disabilities under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (as amended). The College will provide reasonable adjustments and/or accommodations to assure that students will have equal opportunity to learn, grow, and succeed during their time at PSC. The entire college community (faculty, staff, and students) has the broad responsibility to adhere to this philosophy of equal access to opportunity.

Paul Smith’s College has charged the Center for Accommodative Services with providing leadership for our efforts to assure equal access for our students. The college will support the authority of the Center for Accommodative Services in these efforts. The current best practices and compliance for disability support services are represented on the Center for Accommodative Services (CAS) website. The office is located in Joan Weil Adirondack Library, room 209.

To initiate recognition and consideration as a student with a disability, students should:

  • Self-disclose their disability by contacting the learning specialist.
  • Request accommodations.
  • Submit appropriate documentation to verify eligibility. Eligibility is determined on an individualized basis and is based upon documentation of a disability that currently substantially limits some major life activity.

All services are completely voluntary, and it is the student’s responsibility to request them. Students are encouraged to identify themselves early to ensure timely accommodations. The first step is to submit a Disability Disclosure/Application for Accommodations & Services to: Learning Specialist, Center for Accommodative Services, Paul Smith’s College, Paul Smiths NY 12970.



You’re an expert on your own disability. While the college challenges students with disabilities to accept the freedom and responsibility of directing their own lives, we also believe that all students deserve the opportunity to succeed to the best of their abilities. Learning specialists help people with disabilities exercise more control over their own education, increase their independence and self-determination and complete degree requirements.

The Center for Accommodative Services offers alternatives and options that allow students to fully participate in academic pursuits at Paul Smith’s. It is up to students to make their own decisions and to initiate actions that ultimately lead to success and enable them to contribute to, as well as share responsibility in, the Paul Smith’s College community.

Services will not be initiated until students request them. Students have the right at any time to discontinue services. They may refer themselves to the Academic Support Center for extra help in any subject. Professors may refer students, as well. The academic support coordinator obtains information from students about how they are doing in their courses before assigning a student tutor.


“You have a responsibility to yourself. This means refusing to let others do your thinking, talking and naming for you, learning to respect and use your own brains and instincts, grappling with hard work. You refuse to sell your talents and aspirations short, simply to avoid conflict and confrontation. You have the right to expect your faculty to take you seriously [which means that you] seek criticism, reject attitudes of ‘take it easy’, and assume your share of responsibility for what happens in the classroom because that affects the quality of your daily life here.” – Adrienne Rich, author

Be your own best advocate. Rehearse your explanation so that you can explain why you need academic adjustments.

  • Understand your own disability by learning all you can about it.
  • Manage your time. Keep ONE calendar for all important dates. Keep “To Do” lists to match due dates.
  • Attend all classes. Sit toward the front of the class.
  • Ask questions.
  • Review notes as soon after class as possible.
  • Work with others to complete assignments and review for exams.
  • Get help early. Use the Center for Accommodative Services, Academic Support Center, and other resources.
  • Know your degree requirements. Set realistic goals.
  • Every student is assigned a faculty member as an academic adviser. Your adviser will help you register for the right courses, explain the college catalog to you, help you with drop/add, and have a copy of your grades each time they are distributed. Get to know your adviser right away. Remember, your adviser can also be your advocate.

Each individual has the right and responsibility to make the decisions that shape their educational program and their lives. The individual has the right to take reasonable risks to test and stretch their limits of independence. In addition to the right of privacy, you have the right to refuse services. Each individual has the right to request, deny, refuse, and dispute services.

Contact Us

Vanessa Case, M.S.Ed
Coordinator of Accommodative Services
Joan Weill Adirondack Library 207
(518) 327-6415
Hours: 8:00am - 4:30pm