For Applicants

Dear Prospective Student!

The transition to college is exciting and challenging because you are making decisions about your future independently, perhaps for the first time. …

Read more about what awaits you at Grinnell in an open letter from Claire Forrest ’13.

We accept students that demonstrate high levels of intellectual capacity, initiative, and maturity. Every year, this group includes people with physical or psychological challenges or learning disabilities.

To learn more about resources available for Grinnell students and how our process works, see Disability Services for Students.

See our Tips from Parents on what to look for and how to evaluate colleges when you are (or are the parent of) a student with a disability.

In Tips from Students, recent graduates give you ideas about how to get the most from your Grinnell experience.

The Admissions and Application Process

All students apply to Grinnell through the same admissions process. There is no separate application or admission criteria for students with disabilities.

You are not required to disclose your disability during the application process, and many students do not do so.

Some students choose to disclose their disability if they feel it provides a clearer view of their academic records or shows their strength as a student in overcoming obstacles. You may choose to do so, as well.

Whether you choose to disclose your disability or not, your application will be evaluated based on the same criteria as all other applicants.

If you are admitted and choose to come to Grinnell, you will be responsible for meeting Grinnell’s essential requirements, with or without appropriate accommodations.

Grinnell's Disability Resources

Grinnell's coordinator of disability resources works with students to explain policies and procedures, evaluate requests for accommodations, and coordinate with other areas on campus. You can contact our coordinator of disability resources or email the office at any time if you want to discuss your disability and the services that might be appropriate.

Differences Between High School and College

If you are coming from high school, you need to know that accommodations in college may be quite different from what you are used to. Grinnell College has created a guide to explain legal and accommodation differences between high school and college to assist with your transition to college.

A few additional things you might read:

  • U.S. Department of Education's Guide to Students with Disabilities.
  • "Going to College" - The contents of this website were developed under a grant from the Office of Special Education Programs, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, U.S. Department of Education by Virginia Commonwealth University's Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Workplace Supports and Job Retention. That's a mouthful. This is great info on transitioning to college!
  • College is also different from high school academically. Think about taking tips from the DO-IT Center by reading their "College Survival Skills."

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