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Our new office location is in the 24th Street Residence Hall - 340 East 24th Street, New York, NY 10010

Mission Statement:

Disability Resources assists in creating an accessible campus environment at the School of Visual Arts (SVA) where students with disabilities have equal access to educational programs and the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of campus life. Through partnerships with students, faculty and staff members, Disability Resources works to promote students' independence, self-advocacy, and development and ensures that students are recognized for their abilities—not their disabilities.


Disability Law and Academic Accommodations for Accessibility

Disability Laws as they apply to Private Higher Education Institutions

Higher education institutions adhere to different disability laws than high schools.  At the college level, accommodations are only provided when the student has self-identified as having a functional impairment that substantially limits major life functioning. Students attending high school are protected by IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) which allows schools to make curricular changes for students with disabilities.  At the college level, all students with disabilities must be “otherwise qualified”; therefore, they are required to meet the academic and technical skills for their respective program. It is important that all students understand that SVA will not modify exams or curriculum, and standards for grading are determined by the instructor. The American's with Disabilities Act and Amendments govern the decisions pertaining to accommodations for disabilities at the SVA.  

For more information on the transition process from high school to college, please refer to the document, Making the Transition, which you can download on the right hand side of this page.

Reasonable Academic Accommodations

Disabilities vary on how they impact a person’s major life functions. Due to the varying differences in disabilities, ODS can only provide academic accommodations based on the history of the disability, reported limitations, and/or respective documentation from a qualified professional. There must always be a correlation between the impact of the disability and the requested accommodation.  Accommodations are adjustments, changes or alterations to a program, service, activity or policy, in order to permit equal access. 

Please note: personal services such as: content specific tutoring, personal aides, or assistance in bathing, grooming, food preparation, housekeeping, and assistance ambulating are not deemed reasonable accommodations. Additionally, individually prescribed devices, such as hearing aids, glasses, braces, wheelchairs, and other mobility devices are to be purchased by the student.

Arranging Accommodations

Once students have completed the registration process, they are responsible for working collaboratively with ODS in coordinating their accommodations  (i.e., delivering the Accommodation Verification Letter to instructors, submitting forms for exam accommodations, etc.).  For more information on accommodation policies, procedures, and forms, please refer to my.sva.edu/departments/disability services.

New Students Registering with Disability Resources

Students who wish to receive accommodations at the School of Visual Arts must register with Disability Resources by completing the New Student Registration form below.



Please also download the following documents from the right side menu of our homepage.

How to Get Accommodations at SVA

Authorization for Release of Information (only complete this form if you want Disability Resources staff to contact the professional who is providing verification of your disability)

Returning Students

Students must contact Disability Resources EVERY Semester they wish to receive accommodations.

Below is a video showing students how to renew their accommodations.


Students can renew their accommodations via the MyAccommodate link located under "Quick Links" on MySVA.

Click Here to Log On to MySVA

Students must obtain updated accommodation letters each semester by submitting a Semester Request via MyAccommodate. Updated accommodation letters must be given by to student to their instructors at the beginning of each semester.  Photo copies of previous accommodation letters are insufficient.  SVA faculty are not required to provide a student with accommodations unless the student has provided an appropriately dated accommodation letter. 

Updated accommodation letters may be picked up at ODS two business days after you submit your Semester Request. You may pick up your letters from our Office Assistant any time Monday - Friday between the hours of 9am-5pm.

If you would like to make changes to your letter or want to speak with Disability Resources staff, please visit Disability Resources during the walk-in hours posted in the "Contact Us" section or schedule an appointment. 

To request an appointment please e-mail [email protected]

Scheduling Exam Accommodations

Students who are approved for Exam Accommodations must play an active role in coordinating the scheduling of their exams. Disability Resources requires students to complete and submit the “Exam Accommodations Request Form” (found by clicking the red link below). Also, students should inform their instructors that they intent to take the exam in the Disability Resources office. Disability Resources staff will contact the instructors, and will arrange a date at time for the student to take the exam with accommodations.



 Student Responsibilities Prior to Exam Day

  1. Students must give their Accommodation Verification Letters to their instructors at the beginning of the semester.
  2. Students must fill out an “Exam Accommodations Request Form” for each exam they wish to take with accommodations. This form should be completed and sent to Disability Resources at least two weeks prior to the exam test date.  When possible, Disability Resources Staff asks students to submit exam requests at the beginning of the semester.  ***Due to scheduling issues, exam accommodation requests for midterms and finals should be submitted at least one month prior to the midterm of final exam date. (If this deadline has passed, please contact Disability Resources staff in person to discuss scheduling your exam)***

  3. Students should inform Disability Resources staff of any exam scheduling changes. One week prior to the exam, Disability Resources will contact the student to verify the details of the exam, and to inform the student of their scheduled time to take the exam. Disability Resources staff will also contact the instructor to obtain the exam materials. 


Residential Accommodations

Residential Accommodation Requests


In accordance with applicable local, state, and federal disability laws the School of Visual Arts will provide reasonable residential accommodations to individuals who have a disability.

A disability defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act includes anyone who has a qualifying physical or psychological impairment and/or a record of such an impairment, or is regarded has having such an impairment.

Accommodations for housing are determined on a case-by-case basis and are subject to availability.  Students are encouraged to inform the college of their accommodation needs as early as possible in the residential assignment process.

In order to request residential accommodations, students must be eligible for housing and must meet all of the applicable housing deposit and deadline regulations.  A request for residential accommodations must be submitted by:

2017 Summer – Requests must be made by April 17, 2017

2017-2018 Academic Year – Requests must be made by June 1, 2017

Requests for residential accommodations received after these dates will be reviewed and considered but are not guaranteed.

Common Accommodations

  • Single Room – shared bathroom
  • Physical Modifications – wheelchair accessibility, modifications for hearing impaired or Deaf students, temporary modifications to accommodate an injury
  • Furniture – SVA provides furniture that meets specific fire and safety criteria.  Students must demonstrate an accommodation need for non-college provided furniture.

Please note the following:

  • Roommate requests are not accommodations.

Accommodation Request Process

Students must register with the office of disability services by completing an online registration form located at: sva.edu/disabilityservices under “Registering with the Office of Disability Services”

All residential accommodation requests require documentation from a licensed healthcare provider. 

  • Documentation must describe the student’s disability and must show support for the accommodation request as it relates to the disability. 
  • Documentation must be detailed and specific. 
  • Documentation must be recent (within the last year of applying for housing)
  • Documentation must establish a direct link between the limitations due to disability and the accommodation being requested.
  • Handwritten patient records or notes from patient charts are not acceptable documentation
  • Diagnoses written on prescription pads are not acceptable documentation


Review Process

The Office of Disability Resources will review each residential accommodation request on an individual basis and will make a determination.  Disability Resources Staff will work with Residence Life to implement the accommodations.  Accommodation decisions will be communicated to the student by Disability Resources.  Housing assignments will be communicated to the student by the Office of Residence Life.

Services Provided

Disability Resources provides the following services and resources:

Accommodation Determination Decisions

Arrangement of Accommodations

Weekly or Bi-weekly individual counseling/coaching on issues pertaining to: adjusting to college life, academics, adjusting to disability, stress management, time-management, anxiety management, study skills, communication skills, self-advocacy skills, and socialization skills. 

Drop-in Counseling or Crisis Intervention

Exam Proctoring/Distraction Reduced Testing Environment

Arrangement of ASL interpreting or CART services

Captioning Services (in collaboration with the Office of Learning Technology)

Consultation with Faculty/Staff

Group Counseling (see below)

Fall 2015 Groups:



Wednesdays at 3:30pm

Group Focus:  Connecting, Aspiring, Participating, and Communicating

This group is primarily for our students who are on the Autism Spectrum or who have diagnoses of PDD or Asperger's Syndrome.  Additionally, students who would like to improve their social skills and become more involved in the SVA community are welcome to attend this group.


Thursdays at 3:30pm

Group Focus:  anxiety, critiques, in-class presentations

This group is for students who experience anxiety or stress in situations where they are the center of attention or "in the spotlight".  This group will help students develop stress and anxiety management techniques and become more comfortable with presentations and critiques.

Contact Us

Regular Business Hours:

Monday - Friday, 9:00am - 5:00pm

Summer Business Hours (June - August):

Monday – Thursday, 9:00am – 5:00pm

Friday - 9:00am-4:00pm

Contact Information:
Telephone: 212-592-2396
Fax: 212-592-2899
E-mail:[email protected]

Office Location:

340 East 24th Street, 1st Floor, New York, NY 10010

Mailing Address:

School of Visual Arts
Office of Disability Services
209 East 23 Street
New York, NY 10010

Staff Members:

Caryn Leonard-Wilde, MS.Ed., CRC., MHC-LP, Associate Director of Disability Resources

Dan Stokes, MS.Ed., CRC., Coordinator of Disability Resources

School of Visual Arts | 209 East 23 Street, NY, NY 10010-3994 | Tel: 212.592.2000 | Fax: 212.725.3587