MySide Search
MySide Site Logo
Home » Campus Offices » Disability Services » Registering with Disability Services for Academic Purposes

Registering with Disability Services for Academic Purposes

Last updated April 07, 2021

For the University to respond appropriately to requests academic-related accommodations, students are expected to follow the following steps:

Step 1. Contact the Coordinator of Disability Services in person, by phone, or via email at: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). To start the process, you will be directed to complete the Initial Accommodation Request Form. Please contact the Disability Services office if you need any accommodations in this process.

Step 2. Complete the Initial Accommodation Request Form and, unless otherwise noted, provide the Disability Services Coordinator with sufficient documentation of your disability. The documentation must come from a licensed clinical professional or health care provider familiar with your functional limitations. The documentation should not come from a professional who is a relative, friend, or family, or if the documentation is older than two years. 

The following are the University’s Guidelines on Documentation. The documentation must:

  • be typed or printed on official letterhead and be signed by an evaluator qualified to make the specific diagnosis (include information about license or certification and area of specialization);
  • clearly state the diagnosed disability or disabilities;
  • describe current functional limitations resulting from the disability or disabilities, including if possible age appropriate-descriptions on how the disability or disabilities affect the student in the setting of higher education;
  • include if possible a description of the methodology or tests used to diagnose the disability or disabilities;
  • be as comprehensive as possible, including complete educational, developmental, and medical history relevant to the disability for which accommodations are being requested; and
  • if known, include current or past accommodations, medications, or services that have assisted the student in an academic setting, or describe how recommended specific accommodations are effective in accommodating the student’s disability or disabilities.

You may also provide additional supportive documentation which could be helpful to the interactive process, including but is not limited to:

  • High School records
  • Rehabilitation organization records
  • Data from other universities (for transfer students)
  • Specific plans recommended by qualified professionals and/or consultants

Step 3. The Initial Accommodation Request Form and submitted documentation will be reviewed by the University’s Disability Services Coordinator. You will receive a communication to your University email inbox instructing you to schedule a meeting with the Coordinator for an interview.

Step 4. Schedule and attend the meeting with the Coordinator. During the interview, you and the Coordinator will engage in an “interactive” process in which you discuss the following:

  • The University’s policies and procedures on accommodations
  • The documentation you submitted
  • Barriers you experience in your academics and/or activities
  • Your accommodation inquiries and suggestions
  • The specific adjustments or services (reasonable accommodations) that are available for you, and how to set up those accommodations

Step 5. Following this meeting, the Disability Services Coordinator will serve as facilitator for the accommodations process. This means the Disability Services Coordinator will provide a document to your instructors detailing your approved academic accommodations for the semester, and answer questions faculty may have about the process. The Coordinator is available to further facilitate conversations between you and your instructors, if needed.

Step 6. While you are a student, the DS office will continue to send your approved accommodations to your instructors each semester. If at any time you need more, less, or different accommodations, contact the Disability Services Coordinator. You may need to go through one or more of the steps outlined above based on the nature of your request.

Examples of Accommodations

Accommodations will be approved based on the individual needs of the student who has a qualifying disability, and the University’s ability to reasonably accommodate the disability without undue hardship and/or fundamentally altering a program or activity. Examples of reasonable academic accommodations might include the following:

  • Classroom accessibility
  • Copies of instructor’s notes
  • Tape recordings of class
  • Preferential seating
  • Test-taking accommodations