Student Frequently Asked Questions
What are accommodations?
Accommodations are legally entitled modifications or adjustments made to help mitigate the symptoms of a disability to provide equal access to education. They are provided at no financial cost to the student. Accommodations are communicated to your instructors through the DRC.
How do I get started with the process of getting an accommodation?
Please fill out an application on our website and call to schedule an initial appointment
Will the use of accommodations show up on my transcript?
No, accommodation use does not appear on your transcript.
I had accommodations in the past; will I get the same accommodations at USU?
It depends on the accommodation and need. The purpose of the accommodation is different in higher education than in high school. In higher education, accommodations are individualized and approved for the purpose of equal access to education. An Accessibility Consultant will meet with you about your previous accommodations and current needs to help determine what accommodations will be approved.
How are accommodations determined? Also, I want to know everything you have to offer.
Accommodations are individualized and are determined by evaluating medical documentation and history, as well as an interactive process between the student and consultant. An Accessibility Consultant will meet with you to discuss the barriers you are facing and what accommodations will give you equal access to your educational experiences. We do not assign a specific list of accommodations for each disability. We understand that students with a similar diagnosis can have very different experiences and limitations.
Do I need to request accommodations each semester?
After you have met with an Accessibility Consultant and received a letter of eligibility, you can request your accommodations online through Aggie Access. Each semester afterwards, or after you register for new classes, you will have to request the accommodations through Aggie Access. When you make this request, an email is sent to your instructors notifying them of your need for accommodations.
What if I didn't get my accommodation?
If you have any questions or concerns about accessing your accommodations, please communicate with your Accessibility Consultant to find out why you didn’t get the accommodation.
Are my accommodations good at other schools or universities?
The DRC can only approve accommodations for USU. If you need documentation of your use of accommodations at USU to bring to another school, we are happy to provide a letter to you.
Is it too late to request accommodations?
You can request accommodations at any point in the semester; however, it takes time to process the request. We recommend that you request accommodations as soon as you realize you will need them.
My doctor said I need a specific accommodation but it wasn't approved, now what?
While we appreciate the recommendation of health care providers, accommodations are not automatically granted based on the health care provider’s letter.
Do I have to have documentation before coming to the DRC?
No, often students who visit with us have not yet been diagnosed. We can help you with information regarding what we may need to proceed and how to get an assessment if needed.
What is the difference between a teacher's adjustment and an accommodation?
Teachers may adjust the requirements of the course as they see fit, in accordance with university policies. The excused absence policy outlines reasons the instructor may excuse an absence.
If students need an adjustment due to a diagnosis or disability, it is considered an accommodation. Therefore, the recommendation is that the student be referred to the DRC to make the request for an accommodation.
What can I do if I don’t agree with the accommodations approved by the DRC? (Do I have the right to appeal?)
Sometimes you may not agree with the decisions of the consultant approving the accommodation. The DRC Consultant will let you know why your request was not approved. You can visit with the DRC director, David Pruden. You also may file a grievance report.
Can you help with housing accommodations?
Yes, often specific documentation is required that addresses your housing need and the relationship to the disability.
Can I just ask my teachers to make adjustments to their classes? Are these accommodations?
If the request is due to a disability or diagnosis, it would be considered an accommodation. Accommodations should be reviewed by and coordinated through the DRC.A teacher can make adjustments due to medical/temporary conditions or extenuating circumstances. Teachers are asked that if the student is asking for something they would do for any student, then they do not need to coordinate with the DRC, but that the student should be made aware of the DRC. We recommend that if the teacher would make an adjustment only because of a student’s disability then you should make your request to your DRC consultant.
How can I get an excused absence or an extension to assignments as an accommodation (due to disability)?
One of the purposes of providing accommodations is to help you meet the expectations of the course, which includes meeting deadlines. We understand, however, that there may be specific instances when a disability causes acute symptoms that are unforeseeable. Using medical documentation that speaks to the frequency and duration the disability causes, an Accessibility Consultant may approve an extension or excused absence on a case-by-case basis. This accommodation is rare and is for when flare ups happen. Talk to an Accessibility Consultant for more information.
What if I feel the school is discriminating against me due to my disability?
First, you can meet with David Pruden, DRC Director, for information about how to address your concerns.
Students who wish to file a complaint alleging discrimination based on disability have a right to file a Grievance within 30 days of alleged violation. You have a right for the prompt and equitable resolution of complaints. In addition, visit equity.usu.edu.
Should I tell my teacher about my disability?
Though you are welcome to disclose your diagnosis to your teacher, you are not required to do so, and teachers should not ask you specific details of your disability. Your Accessibility Consultant is happy to teach you some strategies for advocating for yourself. If you need accommodations, the DRC will communicate to faculty that you have a disability that requires certain accommodations they are responsible to allow.
I cannot keep up in my classes, what are my options? I'm failing one or all of my classes; do you have any suggestions?
Accessibility Consultants are happy to discuss reasons why you are struggling with keeping up with your classes and some options for you. Some common causes for this struggle are disability related barriers, heavy course loads, and weakness in time management or organizational skills. The earlier you schedule a time to meet with your Accessibility Consultant, the more options you will have.
Do you have any support for temporary conditions?
Yes, depending on what is going on, we are able to help you with support temporarily.
Can you contact my teachers when I am sick?
The DRC doesn't typically get involved with general or temporary types of sicknesses. Those can be handled with the teacher in regards to the university’s excused absence policy. If the sickness is the result of a disability, then the DRC can discuss with you options for accommodations.
Will my professors know that I work with the DRC?
This depends on the accommodation that is requested. We will communicate the approved accommodation through email, typically with our automated online system. This is when it is necessary for your teacher to know.
Can you give me advice on other support and services on campus?
Yes, there are many offices that may be able to contribute to your education, and we are happy to explore those options with you.
Does the DRC work with students who have depression or anxiety?
Often students who experience depression and anxiety have times where the symptoms rise to the level of a disability. We are happy to visit with you regarding these diagnoses and how they may be impacting school and what options may be available. At times, we will connect you to other resources as needed.
Does the DRC work with students attending classes online or at Statewide campuses?
Yes, we can visit over the phone or Zoom to begin the process. Some accommodations may look different depending on the format of your courses and we are happy to visit about that depending on your individual needs.
Can you excuse my absence for my doctor’s or therapist appointment?
Students can work with their instructors individually if an appointment conflicts with class attendance according to the excused absence policy. If appointments consistently interfere with the class times, and they are required due to disability, we recommend that students meet with an Accessibility Consultant to explore options.
What services does the DRC provide?
The DRC provides a variety of accommodations based on the limitations the student is currently experiencing. Information about common accommodations can be found on our website (link). Here are some examples of common accommodations: accommodated testing, accessible course materials, accessible recordings of lectures, interpreting, transcribing and captioning services, housing accommodations, architectural access and more.
What documentation is required to receive DRC services?
Some disabilities are obvious and do not require documentation for the consultant to understand the limitations of the disability. It is the student’s responsibility to provide medical documentation that provides a diagnosis and describes the significant limitations the student experiences in an educational setting. If the student has no documentation but suspects they have a disability, an Accessibility Consultant can suggest some ways to get documentation.
Accommodations are individualized and documentation often helps us with this individualization. We will visit with you to hear about your individual limitations and the barriers you may be facing due to your disability. At that time, we will discuss what documentation may be needed and what specific information it should address if we determine it is needed. If you don't have documentation, we will visit with you about resources for getting it.
I'm running out of time on my tests, can you help with that?
Extended time on tests is often an approved accommodation that is helpful for a variety of diagnoses. We are happy to visit with you about this accommodation.
How do I qualify for a note taker?
The note-taking accommodation is approved when the student’s disability inhibits their ability to take notes during the lecture. Sometimes an educational evaluation is needed to help approve this accommodation. The student is still expected to attend the class, and it is not approved for the purpose of missing class.
What if I need a scooter after surgery?
We do not provide scooters but would refer you to the AT Lab at the JQL 126 435-797-0699. They often can let you borrow what you need while on campus.
Does the DRC provide tutoring?
The purpose of an accommodation is to ensure equal access to education. With this in mind the DRC does not provide tutoring services. However, we often recommend using tutoring services and can possibly refer you to options on campus.
I think I have ADHD and trouble focusing, can you help with that?
Yes, consultants at the DRC will talk to you about any struggles you are having in school, what your symptoms are, and possible accommodations. They can also refer you to options for an evaluation for a possible diagnosis of ADHD.