Accommodations are changes to the design of environments, and auxiliary aids and services that allow people with disabilities to access facilities and fully participate in programs at school or work. To figure out what accommodations might be appropriate and effective in a class or other educational setting, the student, faculty, and Disability Resources staff often work together to identify barriers in the environment.

In Class

If you haven't done it yet, make an appointment with the campus Disability Resources office to register with the office and arrange for any accommodations you'll need for your classes.

You might need to provide "documentation" of your disability to the office so that they understand how it impacts you, and the barriers you might encounter. If you want more information on documentation, check out the "Prove It!" training here in the NCCSD Training Center.

Once you're registered, most Disability Resources offices will put together a letter addressed to your instructors that explains what accommodations you might need and what steps the instructor might need to do. Your classroom accommodations apply to anything related to the class, like labs, discussion groups, videos, guest presentations, field trips, etc.

If any of your instructors have questions about the accommodations that you can't answer, they should contact the Disability Resources office.

Out of the Classroom

Your university or college is responsible for making its facilities and programs accessible to all students. This includes spaces, activities, and events outside of class that it offers.

Residence halls, libraries, student centers, dining halls, recreational and sporting venues, etc. are all included in this.

Often you will see a statement on posters or websites for events that say something like, "If you need disability accommodations for this event, please contact...." That means the sponsor of the program is being proactive about accessibility. Call or email the contact person on the flyer as soon as you can to tell them what accommodations you might need.

Other advertisements don't have that statement. It might mean they haven't thought about accessibility or don't know what to do. But you can still request accommodations. If there's a contact number use that; if not, contact the Disability Resources office about the event.

Internship and Practicum sites must also provide disability accommodations to students who need them to perform tasks there. You usually arrange for these with the Internship Coordinator and Site Supervisor.

Students with disabilities are eligible for accommodations in Work-Study positions, and jobs on and off campus, too! Student Employment and Disability Resources can help with that.

Wondering if the Disability Resources office is for you? Check out...

No Disability Too Small

Learn more about Disability Accommodations at the NCCSD Clearinghouse.

We discuss examples and give you links to accessibility resources and ideas about access technologies.