Services for Injured Veterans

Student Veterans, especially those who served in combat zones, can experience a variety of difficulties when attending college due to injuries suffered during their service. Veterans may experience problems accessing and participating fully in their education due to several “signature” injuries: Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and Hearing Loss.

Veteran's Office, Extension 4520

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI):

A traumatic brain injury involves injury to the brain as the result of trauma, and can result in loss of some previously learned skills or knowledge, and create difficulties with new learning.  There can be physical, sensory, cognitive, language, behavioral and/or emotional changes as a result of the injury.

Educational Limitations:

Injuries to the brain can result in a wide variety of types and severities of limitations including, but not limited to the following:

  • Reduced attention skills, including increased distractibility, which may interfere with learning and performance on tests
  • Reduced memory skills, especially for new information
  • Slower retrieval of learned information
  • Slowed or reduced ability to form abstract concepts, or to express those concepts in words
  • Cognitive difficulty may cause more rapid fatigue than expected in tests
  • Sensory difficulties may interfere with hearing and/or visual perception

Potential Accommodations:

  • Notetaker or audio taping of lectures
  • Preferential seating
  • Alternate media or reader
  • Extended time for exams
  • Distraction-reduced exam area
  • Breaks during exams

Hearing Loss:

Hearing loss may range from complete deafness to a slight loss in a few frequencies and may include tinnitus.

Educational Limitations:

  • Difficulty hearing lectures, group discussions, or student questions in a classroom setting
  • Difficulty taking notes while trying to listen
  • Difficulty hearing audio in media presentations
  • May misunderstand auditory information without realizing the error

Potential Accommodations:

  • Preferential seating
  • Notetaker for class lectures
  • Assistive listening device (e.g., P.F.M.)

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD):

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to a terrifying event in which grave physical harm occurred or was threatened.  Symptoms may include:  frightening thoughts/memories, sleep problems, feeling detached, being easily startled.

Educational Limitations:

  • Difficulty processing lectures and taking notes simultaneously in the classroom
  • Difficulty taking tests in standard conditions
  • Difficulty concentrating and staying focused
  • Low tolerance for stressful situations
  • Difficulty managing emotions in anxiety-producing or novel situations

Potential Accommodations:

  • Extended time for exams
  • Distraction reduced exam area
  • Preferential Seating