Math Disability Waiver in College

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  • Last Post 16 May 2012
pjmartin posted this 09 May 2012 - Last edited 26 February 2016

We are writing to inquire if you know of any online programs that allows a person to obtain a bachelor’s degree with little to no math.

Our son is currently at a community college and he has taken all the classes he can (history, science, English) toward his associate’s degree. The only classes he has left to complete are math. At a young age, he was diagnosed as having a learning disability in math.

At the community college, after taking the math placement course and scoring low, he was put into a preparatory class that he had to pass just to be able to move on to an introductory algebra class. It took him three attempts to get through it. After passing that, he moved on to the basic algebra class and he has since failed to pass it twice.

We are looking high and low to see if we can find a program that would allow him to earn a bachelor’s degree with no further math requirement. Our son is a very bright and well-read individual who excels in research, writing, history and literature.

If you have any insight into a program such as what we have outlined above, we would greatly appreciate your feedback. Thank you in advance for any help you may be able to offer. We look forward to your reply.

4 Comments
vicky posted this 10 May 2012 - Last edited 06 August 2015

Hi PJMartin,

I am assuming from your posting that your son has earned ALL his other requirements for an associates degree except his math requirement. Is that so? Is he required to complete 1 course or 3 semester credits in math for his associates at your community college? Can you tell me the name of the community college and the total number of credits he has earned and what degree he was working toward?

All the above will help us look at possibilities for your son to complete an online bachelors with no math requirement. There are a couple of approaches that might work if you can give us some more details. In the meantime we are researching some options. This will take a few days but if you can give us some more details we can post back next week with some possibilities.

All the Best Vicky Phillips GetEducated.com

VickyPhillips posted this 14 May 2012 - Last edited 06 August 2015

Hi PJ,

As a follow up .. Have you formally petitioned the dean at your son's current college to waive the math course requirement and replace it with another similar requirement such as another science course?

I ask because it sounds like your son has in good faith tried to meet this requirement. If there is a documented learning disability that is blocking his completion then there is a solid reason to petition for an exception in his case. If you have documentation of the math disability then access law and ethics make your case for a petition to have your son exempted from that math requirement is very strong. I have both seen this type of petition of work and been on academic committees that have approved this type of exception for degree programs. Degree plans are nor absolute. It is entirely possible to petition for exceptions based on sound logic.

Give us more feedback and we will try and provide as many options for you to consider as possible.

Vicky Phillips Founder - Get Educated

vicky wrote: [quote]Hi PJMartin,

I am assuming from your posting that your son has earned ALL his other requirements for an associates degree except his math requirement. Is that so? Is he required to complete 1 course or 3 semester credits in math for his associates at your community college? Can you tell me the name of the community college and the total number of credits he has earned and what degree he was working toward?

All the above will help us look at possibilities for your son to complete an online bachelors with no math requirement. There are a couple of approaches that might work if you can give us some more details. In the meantime we are researching some options. This will take a few days but if you can give us some more details we can post back next week with some possibilities.

All the Best Vicky Phillips GetEducated.com[/quote]

pjmartin posted this 15 May 2012 - Last edited 06 August 2015

Hi Vicky,

Thanks for your help with this.

In response to your last post, no, we have not petitioned the dean. In reviewing our files, our documentation is too old, the last IEP records we have dated back to well before 9th grade which seems to be the cutoff for a diagnosis. However, we have contacted the high school's special education office to see if they have any old records that we might possibly use.

Regarding your first post, here are the answers: 1. I am assuming from your posting that your son has earned ALL his other requirements for an associate’s degree except his math requirement. Is that so? Is he required to complete 1 course or 3 semester credits in math for his associates at your community college?

Yes, according to the last advisor he met with, he had done everything except take and pass: Introductory Algebra (4 credits) and Intermediate Algebra (4 credits). He did pass the prealgebra class (0 credits) after three attempts and he failed both attempts at Introductory Algebra.

He also passed 3 science courses: Environmental Science (4 credits), Physical Geology (4 credits) and World Regional Geography (4 credits).

  1. Can you tell me the name of the community college? Lansing Community College

  2. Can you tell me the the total number of credits he has earned? 130 (111 in academic subjects and 19 in welding)

  3. What degree was he working toward? The last degree he was working toward was an Associate in Arts Degree in International Studies

We really appreciate your assistance with this. Our son is 31 years old and wants to get on with his education, but - as he just said to me - he is unwilling to take any more math.

VickyPhillips posted this 16 May 2012 - Last edited 06 August 2015

HI PJ,

Thanks for the clarifications. They help.

Every college must publish and stand by their own requirements and rules for earning a degree. At least one course in math is a standard requirement for any accredited college degree HOWEVER when we look at Ashland's catalog and policies here is what they say they can and will do in such a case as the one you present where a student has in good faith tried and failed to meet a core requirement .... (SEE: http://www.lcc.edu/catalog/policiesprocedures/graduation.aspx#core

Below is the official catalog policy that would apply to your son --- in a nutshell they will not waive a core course BUT they will allow a petition for a course substitution -- in that case your son would be allowed to substitute OTHER courses for those algebra courses. Because your son has a disability -- see the clause below -- his case is VERY STRONG for a math substitution.

If I were you I'd meet with an advisor and go over the official catalog policies and ask what documentation is needed to petition. An advisor can help you prepare the petition.

This approach SHOULD result in your son being allowed to complete his degree without taking algebra I and II BUT he would, if approved, need to complete substitute courses for these core requirements.

Let me know what Lansing says .....

LANSING CATALOG POLICY =

Process for Granting Exceptions to the Institutional Core Requirements for Associate Degrees

Core exceptions will be granted only as a result of verifiable college error, e.g. inappropriate advising, inaccurate printed materials. A student who wishes to formally appeal a determination that the Core requirement for an Associate degree has not been met, should appeal initially to the Department Chair of the Department offering the curriculum. The Chair should apply the following parameters in making a determination that an exception to current policy is warranted:

Even if a college error has been documented, if the student has the time and ability to take the course(s) necessary to satisfy the requirement, the course(s) should be completed.

The College does not waive a core requirement. In cases described in #1 above, substitutions are allowed only after consultation with the Chair of the department offering the Core course for which a substitution will be made.

If the Chair determines that an exception is warranted, a recommendation should be sent to the Dean of the Division. The recommendation should include the student's name and student number, a brief summary of the situation and the reason(s) for the recommendation, and any other relevant documentation. If the Dean concurs with the Chair's recommendation, a recommendation should be sent to the Academic Affairs Office. The recommendation will be reviewed, and if any concerns arise, the matter will be further discussed with the Dean. If the recommendation is accepted, the Academic Affairs Office will inform the Registrar of the exception in writing with a copy to the Dean, and will also send written notification to the student with a copy to the Registrar.

The Chair notifies the student if the Chair believes an exception is not warranted. The student may appeal the Chair's decision to the Dean. If the Dean agrees with the Chair's decision, the Dean notifies the student. If the Dean does not agree with the Chair's decision, the Dean will forward a recommendation to the Academic Affairs Office.

The final decision for granting exceptions to the institutional Core requirements rests with the Academic Affairs Office.

Accomodations for Students with Documented Disabilities

In January 1999, the following policy for completing the General Education Core Curriculum for Students with Documented Disabilities was approved.

The expectation for students with documented disabilities is that they will complete all requirements for a Lansing Community College associate degree. This includes the General Education Core Curriculum requirements. In cases where a student cannot successfully complete the Core because of a disability (as confirmed by the Office of Disability Services in consultation with the faculty teaching the course), the procedures outlined below will be followed.

It is assumed that the student has attempted the Core course in question with appropriate support from the Office of Disability Services which may include reasonable accommodations being made by the institution.  If the student is not successful, a reasonable substitution for the course (one that enables the student to achieve the outcomes of the course unsuccessfully attempted) may be proposed by a group consisting of the following representatives: a faculty member who is responsible for teaching the course attempted; a member of the Curriculum and Instruction Council; the Leader of the Office of Disability Services; the Divisional Instructional Leader from the Division the offers the student's program.  The proposal will be developed in consultation with the student.

The proposal will be approved by the Provost who will inform the Registrar's Office of the approved substitution in writing.

How to Apply for the Associate Degree, Certificate of Achievement, or Certificate of Completion

Prior to submitting an application for a degree or certificate, students should consult with an advisor to review progress toward completing requirements. Substitutions or waivers for program requirements must be approved on an authorized form signed by the department offering the program. (Substitutions and waivers are not allowed for institutional degree or certificate requirements. See Institutional Requirements for Certificates of Achievement and Certificates of Completion and Institutional Requirements for Associate Degrees in this section.) Students apply by the deadline the semester they complete the program requirements. Information and the applications are located online at http://www.lcc.edu/enrollment/graduation/.

Procedures are as follows:

Complete an Application for Associate Degree, Certificate of Achievement or Certificate of Completion. This application is available in the Enrollment Services Office.  If substitutions and/or waivers have been approved, a Course Substitution and Waiver Authorization form must be attached to the application when submitted or the application will be considered denied.

Attach a copy of the curricular guide (program of study) for the degree or certificate being sought. Note: Students may not follow a curricular guide that predates their first semester of enrollment. The requirements must be met by the semester the curricular guide expires.

Submit the application and the curricular guide to the Enrollment Services Office.  If applicable, attach a Course Substitution and Waiver Authorization form.

If the Enrollment Services Office determines that there are requirements NOT met, the student will receive notification indicating the application has been denied.

If all the requirements are met, the student will receive notification indicating that the degree or certificate has been approved.

The LCC transcript will show the degree or certificate awarded.

Diplomas and certificates are mailed to students during the semester after degrees or certificates have been awarded.

pjmartin wrote: [quote]Hi Vicky,

Thanks for your help with this.

In response to your last post, no, we have not petitioned the dean. In reviewing our files, our documentation is too old, the last IEP records we have dated back to well before 9th grade which seems to be the cutoff for a diagnosis. However, we have contacted the high school's special education office to see if they have any old records that we might possibly use.

Regarding your first post, here are the answers: 1. I am assuming from your posting that your son has earned ALL his other requirements for an associate’s degree except his math requirement. Is that so? Is he required to complete 1 course or 3 semester credits in math for his associates at your community college?

Yes, according to the last advisor he met with, he had done everything except take and pass: Introductory Algebra (4 credits) and Intermediate Algebra (4 credits). He did pass the prealgebra class (0 credits) after three attempts and he failed both attempts at Introductory Algebra.

He also passed 3 science courses: Environmental Science (4 credits), Physical Geology (4 credits) and World Regional Geography (4 credits).

  1. Can you tell me the name of the community college? Lansing Community College

  2. Can you tell me the the total number of credits he has earned? 130 (111 in academic subjects and 19 in welding)

  3. What degree was he working toward? The last degree he was working toward was an Associate in Arts Degree in International Studies

We really appreciate your assistance with this. Our son is 31 years old and wants to get on with his education, but - as he just said to me - he is unwilling to take any more math.[/quote]