Disability Services Artwork

Disability and Access

Ursinus College is dedicated to offering an environment where all students feel affirmed, respected, welcome, and safe.

The mission of the Office of Disability and Access (ODA) is to engage the Ursinus community, empower students, enhance equity, and provide a platform for innovation and inclusion. To achieve this, we mitigate competitive disadvantages and environmental barriers that impact learning by supporting our faculty in the classroom and our colleagues across the College to strive for equitable practices and full inclusion. We provide individualized accommodations when environmental barriers cannot be eliminated that foster independent, self-determined, and engaged students.​

ODA embraces the concept of disability as diversity and is committed to creating a new context and culture for disability.​ We believe that a student’s success may not be despite a disability, but perhaps because of it, given an accessible environment.

Social Model of Disability

The social model of disability is a way of viewing the world, developed by disabled people. Scope’s Everyday Equality strategy is based on this model of disability. The model says that people are disabled by barriers in society, not by their impairment or difference.

“The Social Model frames disability as something that is socially constructed. Disability is created by physical, organisational and attitudinal barriers and these can be changed and eliminated. This gives us a dynamic and positive model that tells us what the problem is and how to fix it. It takes us away from the position of “blaming” the individual for their shortcoming. It states that impairment is, and always will be, present in every known society, and therefore the only logical position to take, is to plan and organise society in a way that includes, rather than excludes, Disabled people.” ───Barbara Lisicki, 2013

Want to read more?

The Social Model of Disability Explained

The Social Model of Disability Fact Sheet

Social Model of Disability Infographic

Models of Disability

Myrin Library, Lower Level

Office of Disability and Access