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High School IEP vs. College

The transition from high school to college typically requires many changes to students' habits and expectations; and even more so for a student who has had academic accommodations in high school. There are different laws and protocols that apply to students in college. In high school, students are covered by IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act); in college, students are covered by ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). (Section 504 applies to both.)

What does that mean for the student?
Unlike high school, it is up to you to disclose your disability and request accommodations by providing documentation to Access and Disability Services (ADS) to validate the request.You are also expected to initiate contact with your professors, providing them with official Accommodation Letters, and following the necessary protocols for implementing any accommodations you wish to receive in the classroom.

This High School vs. College Chart will assist you in learning more about the major differences related to accommodations and expectations. 

If you have a disability, you are encouraged to begin the process for requesting accommodations as soon as possible, following the instructions on our homepage: If you have any questions, you may reach us by telephone at 717-245-1734 or by emailing

To learn more all the steps involved in setting up accommodations at Dickinson, visit the Accommodations Process page.

For more information about how accommodation practices change from high school to college, see:
Preparing for Postsecondary Education: Rights and Responsibilities
ADA vs. IDEA vs. Section 504