How do I know if a student needs accommodation?

Students are expected to supply documentation to support any request for an academic adjustment. Disability Support Services is the designated party at UAA responsible for reviewing such documentation and determining the eligibility for services and accommodations.

A Faculty Notification letter is then issued (ususally by email) to detail the accommodations that have been found to be reasonable given the supporting documentation. Accommodations outlined in the Faculty Notification letters are mandated. Whenever there are questions about the acommodation listed or additional ideas for how best to serve the needs of the student please feel free to discuss with DSS staff. We always welcome questions and concerns.


What if I want to make my classes more accessible for all students?

Disability Support Services is always happy to look at individual courses with faculty to identify universal design approaches that could be a good fit. Give us a call at 786-4530, drop us an e-mail at or stop by Rasmuson Hall Room 105.

Also consider visiting the UAA Proactive Design site at for more information.


What if a student with a disability is failing my course?

All students are to be held to the same academic standards. Students with documented disabilities may receive reasonable accommodations to assure equal access, to "level the playing field." These accommodations are made so that students with disabilities can compete with other students in the class. Academic success is not a guarantee for any student and just as the general population shows diversity in terms of quality of work and propensity to succeed, so too does the population of students with disabilities. Judge them equally. Judge them fairly. If they can't meet the requirements laid out in your syllabus, they can't pass the class.


More questions

If you have questions that are not addressed on this page please call DSS at 786-4530 or email

What if a students disability causes him or her to be disruptive to the class? While some students with disabilities may need to occasionally leave the room or stand instead of sit, they are expected to be as unobtrusive as possible. Any behavior that is unacceptable for students in general, is unacceptable for students with disabilities as well. All students at UAA are held to the same code of conduct and are subject to the same disciplinary procedures.

What if a student in my class is missing sessions? We urge all instructors to be clear in their attendance policy. Students with disabilities are held to the same standards as other students in the class. At times a student with a disability may request a letter from this office informing instructors of a disability that may affect attendance. We urge students to discuss possible means and/or opportunities to make-up missed work with instructors, however any exception to a stated attendance policy, is just that, an exception. It is granted at the instructor's discretion.

Do I have to give make-up exams to a student who misses the test? If the course syllabus mandates that students who miss a test can not receive a make-up then that is the policy to which all students can be held. However, if a student requires testing accommodations that prevent him or her from testing at the same time and place as the rest of the class, they can not be penalized for this alone. If they miss the alternate date and time that has been established, then they are liable for the same repercussions as a student who missed the in-class exam.