A learning disability is a permanent disorder, which affects the manner in which individuals process, retain or express information. Common areas of deficit include reading comprehension, spelling, written expression, math computation, problem solving, organization, and social skills.
A student with a learning disability functions in the average to above-average range of intelligence. The educational limitations of a student with a learning disability will vary depending on the nature of the disorder. All California Community Colleges apply uniform eligibility criteria in determining if a learning disability is present. Some students were identified as learning disabled in the K-12 system. However, a significant number of students are not identified until they reach the community college system. At WHCL, Learning Disabilities Specialists are available to discuss the accommodations requested by the students in a class class. In addition, students who have difficulties in the areas listed above may be referred by an instructor to DSPS for an orientation, consultation, and free assessment with the LD Specialist.
Accommodations that instructors can support for students with learning disabilities include: extended time during examinations, more in-class handouts, use of tape recorders, and note-taking assistance. Additional pauses during lecture, to allow students to process new information or answer questions, may be helpful to these students.