Academic Accessibility Services

Accessibility Services for Students


We're committed to providing reasonable accommodations for students with documented learning disabilities.

Are you looking for a college with a structured environment?  Massachusetts Maritime Academy might be right for you. The MMA experience consists of two distinct components: The Regiment and Academics. The regimental lifestyle is highly structured. You will be told how and when to polish your shoes, press your uniform, clean your room, stand watch, and more. To fit regimental responsibilities into your daily schedule, you will rise early and go to bed late. The academic component, on the other hand, is more traditional.  It is rigorous.  You will take Calculus, Physics and Chemistry.  While attendance at class is mandatory, it is up to you to plan and organize your academic day. You plan when to do homework, write papers, turn in coursework, and seek help when you need it. Responsibility for such tasks is entirely your own, since MMA does not provide academic coaching or organizational support to help you plan your academic day.

As you transition from high school to college, being well informed about your rights and responsibilities, as well as the responsibilities postsecondary schools have for accommodating students with disabilities, will help you obtain the benefits of higher education and help you select a school that suits your needs. The U.S. Department of Education has prepared two very informative booklets.  

Students submitting a voluntary disclosure form and professional evaluation may be eligible for one or more of the following accommodations:

  • Extended time for quizzes and tests (not to exceed time and ½)
  • Use of tape recorder for lectures
  • Text books on tape
  • Computer use

Reasonable accommodations will be granted to a student provided the accommodation does not substantially alter the fundamental nature of the academic class or program. 

Students with psychological, medical or physical disabilities work primarily with the Health Services Office.  Health Services will coordinate with the Academic Accessibility Services Office to identify reasonable, appropriate accommodations.


Health Services will screen your physical and contact you with an email if your student has a condition that may impact their ability to obtain a Coast guard license.

There are very few medical conditions that automatically disqualify a student from licensing.  There are, however, a number of medical conditions that will cause the USCG to ask for “Amplifying Information,” in the form of additional tests or explanations from the attending physician.  In general, the USCG wants to establish that the individual is responsible to handle their own treatment while on a vessel, that the condition can be handled without direct daily medical supervision, and that the condition does not impact a person’s ability to do their job or endangers anyone else.  In the case of acute conditions or injuries, the USCG wants to establish that treatment was adequate and appropriate, complete and left individual with no lasting effects.

If you are concerned about a medical condition that has been identified as potentially impacting licensure,  visit the STCW/Licensing Officer in the first or second semester. The STCW/Licensing office will submit a request that you be vetted for suitability to hold a license.  This procedure allows you plenty of time to consider changing majors and/or schools if you receive a negative response.

For the Marine Transportation major, there are 98 required performance based assessments directly related to Coast Guard licensing that cannot be extended or changed for disability accommodations due to licensing standards. An example of a performance based assessment is the 6 minute Radar Plotting Assessment.  Additionally, for Marine Transportation majors, passing the USCG exam is a requirement for graduation from Massachusetts Maritime Academy.   Accommodations are not allowed on the USCG exam.  A passing score on many of the exams is 90%.

Marine Engineering (ME) majors must pass 61 required practical assessments directly related to U.S. Coast Guard licensing standards.  Many of these assessments require manual dexterity, but none of them have a specific time requirement.  During their senior year, students in the ME program must qualify as a Third Assistant Engineer, Steam, Motor, and Gas Turbine, Unlimited Horsepower, through examinations administered by the U. S. Coast Guard.  Accommodations are not allowed on the USCG exam.  Passing the USCG exam is an MMA graduation requirement.

Be aware that there are addition requirements placed on students who seek to serve as an officer in the Army or Navy.  If you have a learning disability, or utilize academic accommodations, speak to your Army or Navy Department Head ASAP.

Students may participate in the Navy SSMP Program while waiting medical qualification.  However, in order to commission as an officer in the Navy, a student cannot be on any ADD/ADHD medication, or have a learning disability requiring academic accommodations during their time at MMA. A student may seek a medical waiver for their condition, but a medical waiver is not likely to be considered while receiving academic accommodations or taking ADD/ADHD medication. 

The U.S. Army may waive many conditions for Future Officers, with a standard reflecting the soldier's ability to be retained in the service with no limits to their ability to perform.  Additionally, virtually anyone can take the Army ROTC class, but to formally “enroll” there must be a reasonable assumption they will be found medically qualified.

The DoDMERB reviews each student individually, and makes the final decisions regarding each student's ability to commission as an officer.   The link below may provide some useful information.

Useful Information