Support Services Available at...

Support Services Available at Post-Secondary

by Transition Resource Guide
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Each post-secondary school will have a range of services to support students with disabilities and the wider student population.  These services provide an excellent source of support for students (and are often underused). Students are highly encouraged to take advantage of these resources, and a description of services that may be provided at post-secondary school is given below.


Disability Advisors at each school review the documentation of students with disabilities and determine which accommodations each student needs. Types of accommodations may include:

  • Extended time on exams
  • No more than one exam per day
  • Access to a computer or spell check on exams
  • Note-taker in class
  • Sign language interpreter
  • Alternate format material (ex. Braille)

It is important to remember that the laws that regulate accommodations at college and university are different than those for high school. Many post-secondary institutions require more specific and comprehensive documentation to show proof of a disability than is required in high school (especially for ADHD and learning disabilities). Incoming students will not automatically receive the same accommodations at college or university that they received at high school. To discuss available accommodations, students should contact their post-secondary school directly.


Many colleges and universities offer other services that cater directly to students with disabilities. These may include:

  • Summer Transition or Orientation Programs: some schools offer workshops for students with disabilities to help them prepare for life at post-secondary school; these programs range from one-day events to week long transition camps
  • Appointments with a Learning Strategist: many schools employ learning strategists in their OSD, to help students with disabilities develop strategies to improve their learning and study skills
  • Peer Mentoring: some schools offer peer mentorships with upper-year students who also have disabilities; these mentorships allow students someone to go to for advice and information about navigating post-secondary life
  • Tutoring Services and Academic Support: some schools may offer academic support that is available specifically to students with disabilities


Colleges and universities offer a wealth of support services to meet the diverse needs of all of their students. These services often include:

  • Student Health Centre: the health centre may be drop-in or by appointment only, may be able to offer all of the same services one would receive from a family doctor, or may offer more limited services (with referrals available to community practitioners)
  • Counselling Centre: support and counselling for students that need help regarding anxiety or mood problems, relationships, depression, substance abuse, or other personal crises
  • Library and Reference Workshops: resources and workshops on how to find and access materials in the library for research or other projects, as well as how to properly cite and reference one’s work
  • Peer Tutoring, Writing/Academic Centres: support for students’ writing (essays, research projects) or other academic courses
  • First Generation Student Centre: support for students whose parents did not attend college or university
  • Career Services: a resource centre providing job boards and career listings, sometimes including placement services, and resume-writing support
  • Child Care Services: on-site and/or subsidized child care is available at some post-secondary schools

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