Strategic Education Services (SES)
What Does SES Do?
Strategic Education is individualized, practical assistance that helps students with psychiatric, attentional and developmental disabilities to achieve their goals in college. SES services promote the skills and support necessary for students to be successful and satisfied in their educational pursuits. SES provides individualized one-to-one weekly strategy sessions. We work with students to facilitate access to reasonable and appropriate accommodations. We also refer students to other resources on campus and in the community and coordinate with other Boston University offices. When circumstances require, we can assist in facilitating leaves of absences.
During the weekly strategy sessions, we work with students to help develop better skills in the following areas:
- time management
- planning and organization
- study and test taking
- interpersonal skills (i.e. approaching professors, resolving peer conflicts, etc.)
What sort of conditions does SES help with?
Psychiatric, attentional and developmental conditions that might continue to affect your studies include ADHD, head injuries and concussions, mood disorders (depression, mania, bipolar disorder), anxiety disorders (OCD, PTSD, panic and phobic disorders), eating disorders (anorexia, bulimia), psychotic disorders, personality disorders, and autism spectrum disorders, including Asperger’s. If you have any questions about whether you might benefit from SES, you or your mental health professional can contact us directly.
How do I get services?
To initiate services, you must meet with a senior staff member in the Office of Disability Services. You will be asked to provide medical documentation of your disability and/or neuropsychological testing. All material provided to the Office of Disability Services remains strictly confidential. Once it is determined that your disability qualifies you, accommodations will be determined and, if appropriate, you will be referred for individual services at SES.
Will my professors have access to my medical records?
No. If approved for accommodations, you will be given a letter that informs your professors that you have a disability and have been approved for the specific accommodations. Your medical information, including the nature of your disability, remains confidential.
Am I obligated to disclose my disability to my professors?
No. The accommodation letter is all they are entitled to. You will need to speak with your professor to arrange the actual accommodations, but you do not need to reveal the specific disability. However, under certain circumstances it may be helpful to dislose. We will work with you to determine if it may be an appropriate step and decide how to best navigate the situation.
I need to take a leave of absence. Can you help?
Yes. We can help you coordinate the necessary steps to take a medical leave of absence so that you will be able to preserve your right to return when you are ready.
Is there a charge for SES?
No. Strategic Education Services are provided free of charge to eligible Boston University students.
Does SES provide counseling?
No. We are not a clinical or counseling service, and we do not provide case management. However, we can make referrals on and off campus if appropriate. In some cases, we may require you to seek regular counseling.
I already see a therapist or psychiatrist. Would I benefit from your services?
Yes. SES is specific to academic life and helps you acquire the skills you need to succeed in school. Our services complement other services and support you may already have.
My therapist or parent thinks I would benefit from services, but I don’t think I would. What should I do?
Services are provided solely at the request of the student. Key values of the SES program are student choice and self-determination. The student is an active participant in all phases of services including initiation, structure, frequency, and termination. We invite you to come and talk with us before making your final decision
Do I have to come in at the beginning of the semester?
We encourage you to apply for services as early in the semester as possible, but it is not required. If you believe services may benefit you at any time during your attendance at Boston University, you can come to SES for assistance. However, it will take 2-4 weeks before accommodations will become official.
Will my disabled status be recorded on my academic record?
No. Other than accommodation letters to your professors, the Office of Disability Services maintains all of your records apart from all other academic and administrative departments. None of these records can be released without your permission.
What if I think I have a disability, but I’m not sure?
If you think you may have a disability, you can make an appointment with a member of the SES staff to discuss your concerns. If appropriate, referrals can be made to other services on campus to provide additional help.
We Look Forward to Hearing From You
To request any of the services described in this brochure or if you have any questions, please contact:
Lorraine E. Wolf, Ph.D.
Director, Office of Disability Services
(617) 353-3658 (v/tty)