Administering Accommodations

Administering Accommodations in the Classroom

If you have questions about how to implement a particular accommodation in the classroom, this page is a good place to start! Below, you will find information on viewing Letters of Approved Accommodation, as well as different types of accommodations. Please note that this is not an exhaustive list, and if you have any questions you should reach out to Student Disability Services!



a faculty member teaching students

Letters of Approved Accommodations (LOAAs)

Students who have been approved for accommodations will send their Letters of Approved Accommodations (LOAAs) to their teachers via the Accommodate portal. When possible, this should occur at the beginning of each quarter, prior to the first use of the accommodations, but students can send these letters at any time over the course of the quarter! These notification letters serve as conversation starters between teachers, students, and the DSP office, helping to ensure students' needs are appropriately met.

How do I view LOAAs from students?

To view individual letters:

  1. Go to the Accommodate Portal.
  2. Click "Letters of Approved Accommodation"
  3. Select the letter you wish to view and sign. 

To view accommodations by course:

Sometimes, you may want to see all of the students in a course and the accommodations they are approved for. To do this, 

  1. Go to the Accommodate Portal
  2. Click "Course" 
  3. Select the course you wish to view
  4. On the top ribbon, select "Students." From here, you will be able to see a list of the accommodations each student is approved for. 
The accommodate portal. The course tab on the left is highlighted with a number 1 next two it and there is an arrow pointing to the courses the populated with a 2 next to it
The courses tab in the accommodate portal. A course has been selected and the accommodations for a (fake) student are listed

Implementing Accommodations in the Classroom

the disability pride flag

How do I implement accommodations in the classroom?

Regardless of the kinds of courses you are teaching, you will likely receive accommodation letters from one or more students. Students are responsible for sharing their accommodation letter to alert instructors and faculty of accommodations they will need to use in each course.  

You’ve received an accommodation letter (LOAA) from a student, so now what? Below are some common accommodations and the faculty and student responsibilities. Please know that this list is not exhaustive! If you have additional questions, please reach out to Student Disability Services! We are always happy to answer your questions!

icon of a paper and pencil

Testing Accommodations

Testing accommodations may include: 

  • Extended time 

  • Testing in a distraction reduced setting 

  • Assistive technology (text-to-speech, speech-to-text, etc) 

  • Access to food/drink/medication 

  • And similar accommodations.  

Student responsibilities: Students are responsible for scheduling their tests and exams in the Accommodate testing portal at least five (5) calendar days in advance for Fall, Winter, and Spring quarters, and a least three (3) calendar days in advance for the Summer Quarter. For final exams that are scheduled during the designated final exam period, students must submit requests at least ten (10) calendar days prior to the first day of the final exam period. 

Faculty Responsibilities:  

  • Faculty are responsible for uploading tests and testing instructions via the Accommodate faculty portal at least 1 day prior to the test. This gives SDS time to ensure that the test is accessible for students and clarify any questions.  

  • Faculty are also responsible for being available via phone and email for the entirety of the test, so that students testing in the testing center have equitable access to the instructor for questions.  

  • Faculty are responsible for adding additional time to Canvas exams. If you would like a refresher on how to add extra time to canvas exams, check out our how-to guide.  

  • You can also check out our Faculty Responsibilities for Testing page to learn more. 

icon of a notepad

Notetaking Accommodations

Many disabilities impact a student's ability to take notes in class. The most common notetaking accommodation is audio recordings in class.  

Student responsibilities: Sign the Audio recording memorandum of understanding in Accommodate and meet with the Assistive Technology Specialist to set up your notetaking technology. 

Faculty responsibilities: This one is easy for faculty: simply be aware of who has audio recordings and remember to allow them to use their computer or other device for this accommodation. You can support students with this accommodation by speaking into a microphone, projecting your voice, and reminding classmates to project their voice during class discussions.  Please know that all students with this accommodation sign an audio recording memorandum of understanding. 

icon of a piece of paper with a checkmark

Adjusted Assignment Deadlines

Sometimes a disability can unexpectedly impact a student's ability to finish working on an assignment. Students may submit projects and papers up to two (2) days after the deadline with no penalty. This does not apply to group projects. 

Student responsibilities:  Because homework is routinely reviewed during course sessions, you may not use this accommodation for homework. You may not use this accommodation for lab courses. You may not use this accommodation for presentations and group projects. In the event that this accommodation conflicts with an end of the course assignment, all coursework must be submitted on the last day of the quarter/semester. 

Faculty responsibilities: Please do not deduct points for late work. Student is allowed to submit projects and papers two (2) days after the deadline with no penalty. This does not apply to group projects. 

icon of a book

Alternate Format Text

When we think of reading, we often think of looking at a piece of paper, a book, or a computer screen, and reading the words in the traditional sense. However, this form of reading is not accessible for all students. Alternate Format Text, or AFT for short, is text that has been remediated for accessibility. In its most common form, AFT is a digital text that has been made accessible and can be read aloud by a computer text-to-speech program. However, it can also include other formats like braille or large print. 

Student responsibilities: Students must request their textbooks via the Alternate Format Request Form in order to receive an accessible copy.  

Faculty responsibilities: Faculty are responsible for (1) submitting books to the bookstore on time and (2) checking that any Canvas readings are accessible via text-to-speech technology. Faculty can always connect with the Office of Teaching and Learning for support in making scans accessible. Additional resources are below: 

You can also check out our Faculty Quick Guide to AFT to learn more about Alternate Format Text and why it is important.  

icon of three people with check marks over each person

Adjusted Attendance

Sometimes a disability can unexpectedly impact a student's ability to attend classes. This student is allowed to miss one-two (2) class sessions without penalty. These are considered excused absences and are disability related. 

Faculty responsibilities: Please do not deduct points for missing 1-2 courses.  

Student responsibilities: Please note that you will need to make arrangements to obtain class content from a student in class or your professor. You may not use this accommodation for a class presentation or group project. This accommodation does not apply to labs or courses which meet one time per week. Please notify your professor via email when availing yourself of this accommodation. 

icon of a hands signing and the closed captioning icon.

Interpreting and CART

There may be times when a student requires an interpreter or Communication Access Real Time. 

Student responsibilities: fill out the communication access form at the start of each quarter.

Faculty responsibilities: Please be on the lookout for an email from an Accommodation Specialist at SDS who will be reaching out to you with best practices on working with CART providers and interpreters in the classroom. 

a person works on a computer

Faculty Responsibilities for Accessible Course Content/Alternate Format Text

If you receive a Letter of Approved Accommodation (LOAA) for a student with an Accessible Course Content/Alternate Format Text accommodation, your course readings typically need to be accessible by text-to-speech (TTS) technology. At DU, we use Kurzweil 3000 as our TTS technology. 

Please fill out the Alternate Format Request Form to get support with making course readings accessible in Kurzweil 3000.

*In some unique cases, students may need a specialized format, such as braille. In these situations, someone from SDS will reach out to you to support you!*