Your eligibility for services and accommodations through the Office of Specialized Services (OSS) is a separate process and done independently of the college Admissions Process. You are encouraged to contact OSS in the early stages of college planning.
Evaluation of eligibility
In order to be eligible for accommodations through the Office of Specialized Services, you must:
- Have a disability that substantially limits one or more major life activities that includes, but is not limited to, walking, talking, learning, hearing, or seeing.
- Have and provide current and appropriate information/documentation of such a disability, when necessary.
- Within four to six weeks of completing the documentation submission process, a letter will be emailed to your BCC email address regarding your eligibility status.
This email with the attachment will also have further instructions about your next steps in the process for registering with OSS.
- Considering the length of time it may take to complete the accommodations process and documentation review, students are strongly encouraged to begin the documentation review process as early as possible.
- New students are strongly encouraged to request accommodations from OSS as early as possible prior to attending Bergen Community College.
- Current students may request accommodations at any time but are encouraged to make their requests for accommodations as soon as they become aware of a need for one.
Documentation Filing or Access
- All information submitted to Bergen Community College’s Office of Specialized Services becomes part of a student’s “educational record” as defined by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
- Detailed information about the “student academic record” can be found at https://bergen.edu/registration/ferpa/
Accommodations Request Process
Requesting accommodations from the Office of Specialized Services is a 3-part process:
- Providing disability information or documentation
- Accommodations Workshop
Step 1 – Self-Identify: Click Here – to Complete the Online Intake Form
- The first part of this process is to self-identify as a student with a disability requesting accommodations.
- Definition: Self-identify means the student recognizes they have a disability and would like to request accommodations.
- Student’s attending a post-secondary institution are responsible for identifying themselves to OSS, as a person with a disability.
- Please submit the online INTAKE FORM to self-identify and request specific accommodations.
*NOTES: Plan ahead; it may take up to six weeks to review and/or process your information/documentation.
Step 2 – Provide Disability Information/Documentation
In order to evaluate accommodation and service requests, OSS will need information about how your disability is likely to impact you here at Bergen Community College. We want to understand the relevant impacts of your disability on tasks like communication, reading, writing, technology, the physical environment, classroom and laboratory and on line learning, etc. Information on the impacts of physical (mobility, dexterity, endurance, etc.), perceptual, cognitive (attention, distractibility, communication, etc.), and behavioral abilities may be helpful as well. We treat all information in a private and confidential manner.
Examples of Acceptable Disability Information/Documentation
- Any information/documentation (i.
e. IEP, 504, Educational Evaluation, Psychological Evaluation, Medical Documentation ) students can readily share is helpful and can save the need for follow up meetings with our office.
- Typed Medical Letter from Medical Professional: This type of documentation must meet the following requirements:
- A letter from your physician must be on letterhead
- The diagnosis must be stated
- How the diagnosis affects you academically, physically, mentally, environmental, etc. that is, what barrier does your diagnosis create for learning.
- What accommodations the physician recommends and how they will support the student.
- The Office of Specialized Services recognizes that barriers exist and can create hardship for students with regard to having and presenting third party disability documentation. Please don’t delay meeting with us out of concern for not having appropriate paperwork.
How to Submit Documentation to OSS
Feel free to use one of the following options:
- Drop Off Option: Bringing COPIES ONLY to our office in Room L-115, in the Pitkin Education Center/(Main) Building (1st Floor).
- Electronic Submission Option: Scan and email your documentation to firstname.lastname@example.org using your me.bergen.edu BCC student email address.
– ONLY emails originating from your me.bergen.edu BCC email address will reach us at this email address.
– Your scanned file is larger than 18mb, please split the file into two emails.
– We can only accept Portable Document Files (*.PDF format) files via email. No Google Docs; No pictures of documents (*.jpeg, *png, *.GIF, *TIFF, etc.) , no USB or ZIP drives…
Upon successful submission (to: OSSDOC@bergen.edu) a confirmation email will be sent to your Bergen student email.
- Mailing Option: Mail COPIES ONLY to:
Bergen Community College
ATTN: Office of Specialized Services (OSS), Room L-115
400 Paramus Road
Paramus, NJ 07652.
Documentation Receipt Acknowledgement & Review.
- **Please note a confirmation email will be sent if submitted using OSSDOC@bergen.edu.
In that confirmation email it will state to submit your documentation and intake form.
IF YOU HAVE ALREADY SUBMITTED all your documentation AND intake form, please disregard that note.
- Once all the above steps are completed, students will receive their Letter of Accommodation a day or two before each semester that they register for classes.
Step 3 – Accommodation Workshop
The Accommodation Workshop is a critical step toward receiving accommodations. Once a student has been found eligible for services (via their Eligibility Letter), they will be notified via their BCC email account and notified to sign up for a workshop. It is the student’s responsibility to sign up for their Accommodation Workshop. The Accommodation Workshop introduces students to their eligible accommodations and how to implement them at Bergen Community College.
During the Accommodation Workshop a Resource Accommodation Specialist will review their accommodations and have them sign and submit a Student Agreement Form (sent to their me.bergen.edu BCC student email) before receiving their Accommodation letter.
Once all the above steps are completed, students will receive their Letter of Accommodation each semester that they register for classes and to email@example.com should they wish to use the Office of Testing Services.