What are academic accommodations?
Academic accommodations are provided when students experience disability-related barriers that prohibit demonstration of their knowledge and skills. Accommodations are provided to level the playing field upon which students can establish their success.
It is conceivable that a student has a disability and does not require accommodation when there are no specific disability-related barriers. For example, if a student in a wheelchair has access to classroom and washroom and can listen and take notes in the classroom, he may not require an academic accommodation.
Definition and determination
Accommodation is the process by which suitable arrangements are made for people with disabilities. An accommodation is any change that enables students with disabilities to participate equally in the environment and activities of either a particular class or university life in general. This includes making changes to course delivery, assessment methods, the types of resources provided, and physical access to a class. It involves removing barriers of all kinds, including physical or architectural barriers, information or communication barriers, barriers caused by attitudes, and policies or practices that create barriers.
Accommodations are determined based on available information regarding your functional limitations and their impact on your academic work, as applied to the academic demands of your program, that is provided by:
- You, in dialogue with your Accessibility Advisor
- Your healthcare practitioner
- Provincial best practices
Have a discussion with your Accessibility Advisor if you feel that your accommodations aren’t working.
Accessible classrooms and ergonomic furniture
You can view photos of most classrooms on campus. You will need to know the building and classroom number to search for it.
Classes held at St. Michael’s College, Trinity College and Victoria College are not included in the above search option – contact your Accessibility Advisor for more information.
If the classroom is not accessible, contact your Accessibility Advisor.
Ergonomic or adaptive furniture in the classroom
Adjustable chairs and tables are available for use in some classrooms.
This accommodation must be approved by your Accessibility Advisor.
Alternate format for textbooks and course packs
For students that require alternate formats in order to access their course material, textbooks and course packs can be provided in alternate formats such as braille, DAISY recordings and e-text files (to be used with Kurzweil software).This service is provided in collaboration with Access Services, a department of Robarts Library.
How to access alternate formats
- Meet with your Accessibility Advisor and sign the contract
- Contact Access Services to schedule an appointment: 416-978-1957 | firstname.lastname@example.org | Room 1008, 1st floor, Robarts Library
A cue sheet is intended to provide information to trigger the answer to a question. It is not intended to provide you with the answer.
Cue sheets should not contain a synopsis of course material, but rather definitions and formulas that would enable you to solve the problem.
There are specific documentation requirements and important instructions for both professors and students regarding cue sheets. See the documents section.
Reduced course load
Many students reduce their course load as a way to cope with the demands of their academic programs. This accommodation is frequently recommended by Accessibility Advisor.
Volunteer note taking
Once your Accessibility Advisor approves you for volunteer note-taking, you can sign up for the service. The volunteer note-taking service will ask your professor to make an announcement to the class. Reminding your professor to make the announcement can be helpful.