View Full Version : I have ADHD. Am I being discriminated against?

06-07-09, 01:49 AM
Multiple choice tests and quizzes sure were a breeze when they gave you extra time. I have ADHD and have enjoyed the extra time.
Because college is not included in the free and appropriate public education, Institutions of higher education are looking to the new generation of young adults with ADHD, and the like, as cash cows during the economic recession, in the following ways,
1) unnessesary program requirements;
2) rapid divergence from the traditional methods of instruction;
3) rapid divergence from the traditional methods of examination;
in order to make such students repeat courses, or to overload those students to the point where it feels nessesary for him/her to withdraw from a course/program.


In the mid to late 90's, more elementary school children were classified and accomadated for add/adhd and other learning/emotional disabilities, and there was an explosion of secondary schools with special education programs in the earley 2000's as a direct result. the free and appropriate education mandated by federal law forced these institutions to change only by accelerating the accomadation of those with disabilities. those going to school in this transitory period were able to enjoy the full benefits provided by the law as well as the unadulterated intentions. sympathetic teachers reinforced medium to long length in-class readings directly from the textbooks with short discussions, and short question and answer writings. homework assignments were to-the-point, short answer and multiple choice with terms and definitions either asked or explained. when it came time for tests, exhaustive multiple choice sections covered the facts to be learned, and concepts, names and places were matching section items, with the less concrete ideas requiring short essays. the best was made of my time in high school, and the federal laws were partially to thank.
It has taken an hour and a half so far for my ideas to appear and for the right words to appear on the paragraphs above. I would like to compare some of the mandatory items in my high school curriculum to the degree requirements of my engineering program. in grades 9 and 10, classes met every day monday through friday for 43 minutes. the next two years, classes were twice as long but took place every other day. in contrast, college classes averaged 90 minutes, took place twice a week, for one college semester. my college career had turned out to be maddeningly redundant to what high schoolers are required to learn, yet i am still struggling.

my main point is that they are trying to neutralize my accomadations of extra time , class notes, by giving take home tests, in the form of multiple essays, which i have more difficulty on than multiple choice. my accomadations, and i'm sure many others'

High school books were twice as thick as my college books are now.

I need to take a health/ fitness couse, though more has already been required by most high schools.

my college has altered the nature of it's education in a way that appears to directly counter the accomadations afforded by the ada amendments act of 2008.

i would like to know if i am being discriminated against, and if so, by whom. Perhaps i belong to a class of individuals who face the same discrimination?

06-07-09, 05:18 PM
I'm sorry. I read your post a few times, but I'm still not understanding your point. How do you believe you are being discriminated against? What exactly is the problem?

06-07-09, 06:16 PM
Multiple choice questions are usually mostly for super large first year classes. You may need to hire a tutor to help you with your essays.

One thing you did not do was list the accomodations they say they are giving. And how you feel they are deviating from those accomodations?

I'm not sure a comparison with high school accomodations can be useful.

06-07-09, 06:21 PM
I don't believe they have purposely structured the course this way to target individuals that suffer from ADHD, but this may require a certain type of person to handle these type of work load, which of course does not favour people that suffer from ADHD.

06-10-09, 03:03 PM
They aren't going to baby people in college. Multiple choice and simple word answers, are just that, simple.

Freshman year is hard, because really its weeding out the people who don't want to be there/don't care to be there/are not going to work hard.

You aren't being discriminated against, this is how college is. It's taking it to the next level.

College and HS are totally different animals. What applies to one usually does not apply to the other.

You really care about succeeding, so you should probably talk to your professor, or possibly whoever is the head of academics, and explain that you really are putting in your best effort to do your assignments and are working hard for the class, but you are having trouble understanding the content and having trouble memorizing the facts. They can probably give you some tips or tricks or pointers, or possibly point you in the direction of a good tutor. If you are honest and hard-working they will most likely help you.

You probably will want to get a tutor, they can take the time to help you figure out a way to learn the material so you can retain it and make those essay assignments MUCH easier to do.

They are not going to alter the ENTIRE class for you, unfortunately. It's not fair to you, but its also not fair to the kids who don't have any problems to be slowed down or held back either. However, there are people and tools for you to use that will enable you to adapt your style of learning to the content being taught in class so you can better retain it.

If you use your ADHD as an excuse rather then accepting it as something you have to live with and work around, people are going to look down on you and not give you help. I wouldn't gripe about your ADHD and throw it in people's faces, but rather kindly explain to them what problems you have with assignments and how you really want to succeed but are unsure of how to get to that point.