The purpose of this procedure is to afford students an opportunity to resolve complaints about eligibility decisions, academic accommodations, auxiliary services, communication services, denial of services or other administrative decisions of the Disabled Students' Program (DSP). Students have two ways to express their concerns about DSP decisions affecting them. The first is to pursue an "Informal Resolution Procedure" (see next paragraph). The second is to pursue the more "Formal Resolution Procedures (explained below). While it's customary to begin with an "Informal Resolution Procedure;” a student may choose to initiate a "Formal Resolution Procedure" at any time.

In general, when a student is dissatisfied with any DSP accommodations other than alternative media services, the fastest process for resolving the problem is to directly contact your DSP Specialist. However, if after notifying a DSP Specialist a student is still dissatisfied, the informal and formal resolution procedures described below are available.

When a student is dissatisfied with alternative media services provided by the DSP Alternative Media Center, the fastest process for resolving the problem is to directly contact the Alternative Media Liaison. However, if after notifying the Alternative Media Liaison a student is still dissatisfied, the informal and formal resolution procedures described below are available.

DSP Informal Resolution Procedures

A student may pursue informal resolution of a complaint by scheduling a meeting with the DSP Director, to discuss the complaint and explore possible avenues of resolution. If a satisfactory solution cannot be reached, the student may initiate formal resolution by putting their complaint in writing.

DSP Formal Resolution Procedures

Failure by Disabled Students' Program to Timely Authorize or Provide an Appropriate Accommodation

These Formal Resolution Procedures are limited to reviewing administrative decisions and actions of the Disabled Students' program (DSP) Specialist, Supervisor, or other staff. A written complaint submitted under the "Formal Resolution Procedure" about a DSP administrative decision or action must include information regarding the DSP action being complained of and the date it occurred, the grounds upon which the appeal is based, and the relief requested. The complaint must be based on one or more of the following grounds:

  1. Procedural error or violation of policy by DSP staff or supervisor
  2. Judgments improperly based upon non-relevant criteria including, but not limited to, discrimination or harassment on the basis of sex, race, national origin, color, age, religion, sexual orientation, or disability
  3. Specific mitigating circumstances beyond the student's control not properly taken into account in a decision affecting the student's services
  4. Ongoing, repeated failure by DSP to provide an auxiliary aid or alternative media for which DSP has determined the student is eligible.

A written complaint should be emailed to knielson@berkeley.edu and must be submitted to the DSP Director within thirty days from the time the student knew or could reasonably be expected to have known of the DSP staff or supervisor action that is the subject of the complaint. DSP should complete its review and notify the student of the outcome of the complaint within ten days of the date it was received. All time frames referred to in this procedure refer to calendar days. Summer and inter-semester recesses are not included within these time frames. Upon receipt of a written complaint, the DSP Director may assign an individual to investigate the complaint and make a recommendation regarding the outcome of the complaint. At a minimum, the investigation should include an interview with the complainant, a review of any relevant written materials, and an effort to obtain information from relevant individuals (i.e. interviews or written statements or documents). The DSP Director or his designate shall notify the student in writing of the outcome of the complaint.

Non-DSP Resolution Procedures

Failure to Timely Implement a Letter of Accommodation or Otherwise Fail to Accommodate Student in Campus Activity (Discrimination on basis of Disability)

Failure of an academic department/instructor or service provider to properly implement a DSP Letter of Accommodation or failure of any other campus department or unit (besides DSP) to provide a student an appropriate accommodation for a campus event or program should be filed with Disability Compliance at esc@berkeley.edu pursuant to the Campus Disability Discrimination Complaint Process.