If a student identifies as having a disability:
If a student has not identified as having a disability, but is struggling in some way that is not readily explainable:
The key concept when trying to assist students who are struggling in some way is to encourage them to take some sort of constructive action. Reasons for struggles can range from lack of study skills (not uncommon among students at a school with such competitive admissions standards), unsettling life circumstances, certain disabilities that affect the efficiency or method of learning, cultural dissonance with respect to the Dartmouth experience, selected poor academic skills, etc. These things are difficult to discern, and you should not feel like you must land on one perfect referral.
For example, if a student seems like s/he might be depressed, depression could be the main reason for academic difficulties [and, thus, referral to Counseling and Human Development (CHD) at Dick’s House would be the “perfect” referral if the student is ready for it] or it could result from the experience and frustration of – unknown to the student, perhaps – poor study skills or a so-called “learning disability.” It could stem from many other things as well.
A key is to discuss the matter enough to find out what sort of resource appeals to the student, something that will have the best chance of the student following up! Don’t worry too much about whether that turns out the be the perfect place . . . campus resources like CHD, the Academic Skills Center (ASC), Deans, Student Accessibility Services, and OPAL, are quite used to – and good at – cross-referring and ultimately getting the student matched with the right resources.
With respect to Student Accessibility Services:
Last Updated: 10/23/09