Student Rights and Responsibilities

Every otherwise qualified student with a disability has the right to:

  • Equal access to educational and student programs, services, jobs, activities and facilities throughout the College.
  • Reasonable and effective accommodations, auxiliary aids and services, as determined on a case-by-case basis.
  • Appropriate confidentiality regarding information pertaining to disability, including disability disclosure, except as permitted or required by law.
  • Information reasonably available in accessible formats.
  • Utilize, without retaliation, the grievance procedure if the student believes that the College is not providing the appropriate accommodation, academic adjustment, and/or appropriate auxiliary aid and services.
  • Utilize, without retaliation, complaint processes and investigative procedures available at The Arizona Civil Rights Division of the Attorney General's Office (, the Office of Civil Rights at the United States Department of Education (, or the United States Department of Justice (

Every qualified student with disabilities has the responsibility to:

  • Meet the College's qualifications, including essential academic and code of conduct standards.
  • Provide the College with a signed "Authorization to Release Confidential Information" form, authorizing the College and the ARS office to receive disability documentation, and/or share information with College faculty, staff, or any other indicated agencies or persons, including diagnosing professionals themselves.
  • Identify as an individual with a disability and request accommodation in a timely manner. This includes the student's responsibility to advise his/her instructor regarding approved accommodations, and may also include the responsibility to make special arrangements with the instructor.
  • Provide documentation from appropriate professional sources verifying the nature of the student's disability, functional limitations, and the rationale for specific accommodations being recommended.
  • Follow the specific procedures for obtaining reasonable and appropriate accommodations, academic adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids, as outlined in ADA & Equal Opportunity Reasonable Accommodation Guidelines for Students.

AWC Rights and Responsibilities

Arizona Western College has the right to:

  • Maintain the College's academic standards.
  • Request qualifying disability documentation in order to verify eligibility for disability accommodations, academic adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids.
  • Discuss the student's eligibility with diagnosing professionals given a signed consent from the student.
  • Confirm disability status and request and receive current relevant documentation that supports requests for accommodations, academic adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids
  • Select from among equally effective/appropriate accommodations, adjustments and/or auxiliary aids in consultation with the student.
  • Deny requests for accommodations, academic adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids (1) when disability documentation does not identify a specific disability, or (2) despite ongoing dialogue, including one or more requests that the student submit missing documentation, a student is unable to present documentation to verify the need for the requested service(s).
  • Deny requests for accommodations, adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids that are inappropriate or unreasonable based on disability documentation, including any that:
  • Pose a direct threat to the health and safety of the student or others that cannot be adequately reduced or eliminated by reasonable accommodation.
  • Constitute a fundamental change or alteration of an essential course element/program standard; or
  • Pose undue financial or administrative burden on the College.

Arizona Western College has the responsibility to:

  • Provide or arrange reasonable accommodations, academic adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids.
  • Provide information to students with disabilities in accessible formats upon request.
  • Give primary consideration to the specific type of auxiliary aid or service requested by a student.
  • Ensure that course, programs, services, jobs, activities and facilities, when viewed in their entirety, are accessible to and usable by students in the most integrated setting appropriate to the needs of the individual student.
  • Maintain appropriate confidentiality of records and communication except where permitted or required by law.
  • Not retaliate against, coerce, intimidate, threaten or interfere with any student for exercising these rights.

Federal Laws

Several federal laws address accessibility and protect the rights of persons with disabilities. These include the following:

  • Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (1973) requires all employers and organizations receiving federal assistance including most universities to provide people with disabilities equal access to information, programs, activities, and services.
  • The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) (1990) applies the same general principle as Section 504 equal opportunity to participate in programs and services but extends the reach to private organizations and any state or local entities not covered under Section 504.
  • The 1998 Amendment to Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act does not directly apply to universities, but it does mandate specific conditions for Internet and Web accessibility that are used as guidelines in designing and creating federal agency Web sites.