REG 02.20.01 - Academic Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

Authority: Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor

History: First Issued: May 10, 2002. Last Revised: December 22, 2005.

Related Policies: 
NCSU POL11.35.01 - Code of Student Conduct 

NCSU REG02.20.07 - Course Syllabus 
NCSU REG11.40.01 - Grievance Procedure for Undergraduate Students
NCSU REG04.20.06 - Personal Care Attendants for Students With Disabilities 

NCSU REG02.20.11 - Recording Lectures and Discussions 

NCSU REG04.20.05 - Service Animals for Persons with Disabilities 

NCSU POL04.25.05 - Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination Policy Statement

Additional References
DSS website
 information on additional documentation and forms 
Office for Civil Rights website
FERPA Consent to Release Information Form

Contact Info: Disability Services Office Home Page (919-513-3768)


1. Introduction

1.1 In accordance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 ("Rehab Act"), the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ("ADA"), and state law, North Carolina State University (hereinafter NC State) is required to accommodate an otherwise qualified individual with a disability by making a reasonable modification in its services, programs, or activities. This regulation addresses the eligibility of students for academic accommodations in educational programs, services, and activities at NC State, as well as the provision of such accommodations to students with various types of disabilities.

2. Definitions

2.1 Disability: a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

2.2 Essential Eligibility Requirements: the fundamental academic or other technical standards required for admission to or participation in the university's programs, services or activities that an individual must be able to meet with or without an accommodation.

2.3 Qualified Individual with a Disability: someone who, with or without an accommodation, meets the essential eligibility requirements for participating in programs, services or activities provided by the university.

2.4 Accommodation: an adjustment or modification in the academic environment that enables an individual to enjoy equal access to the university's programs, services or activities. Examples of academic accommodations include, but are not limited to, alternative testing, extended time, scribes, interpreters, distraction-free environments, Braille materials, taped lectures and closed captioning. The provision of auxiliary aids may be an accommodation.

2.5 Auxiliary Aids: effective methods of making academic materials available to students with disabilities. Examples of auxiliary aids include, but are not limited to, note takers, talking calculators, Braille keyboards, readers, assistive listening devices, raised line drawings, voice synthesis software and screen magnifiers.

3. University Responsibilities

3.1 NC State retains authority, through the Disability Services Office (hereinafter DSO), in determining appropriate accommodations after giving consideration to the preferences of the student, the documentation provided, and institutional expertise in working with students with disabilities.

3.2 NC State has designated the DSO as the unit responsible for providing official notice to the faculty regarding implementation of accommodations for students with disabilities.

3.3 NC State will provide periodic in-service training for faculty and staff to develop their awareness and understanding of the needs of students with disabilities and legal compliance issues.

3.4 NC State will not solicit information regarding an applicant's disability to determine admission. However, such inquiries may be made after an individual has been admitted for purposes of providing appropriate accommodations.

3.5 NC State will not limit the number or proportion of individuals with disabilities who will be admitted or enrolled.

3.6 NC State requires that all tests administered for purposes of admission, enrollment, or placement be non-discriminatory. Tests should be selected and administered so that the results reflect aptitude or achievement level, or whatever other factor the test purports to measure, rather than the applicant's disability, unless the existence of a disability must be determined to allow an individual access to a program, service or activity established for individuals with disabilities.

3.7 NC State will provide the necessary auxiliary aids, services or other reasonable accommodations used by students with disabilities to provide access to university programs, services, or activities. Auxiliary aids, such as assistive listening devices, need not be on hand or present at all times, but must be made available at the time the student needs it.

3.8 NC State does not provide students with disabilities with devices or assistance for personal use, including but not limited to wheelchairs, eyeglasses, hearing aids, assistance for eating or dressing, or readers.

3.9 NC State shall not require a student with a disability to accept an accommodation, aid, service, opportunity or benefit under any circumstances.

3.10 NC State, in providing academic accommodations, shall not fundamentally alter the nature of the program, service or activity; require waiver of essential program or licensure requirements; violate accreditation requirements; unnecessarily intrude on academic freedom; or pose an undue fiscal or administrative burden on the institution.

3.11 NC State will not place a surcharge on a particular student with a disability or any group of students with disabilities to cover the costs of measures that are required to comply with the applicable disability law.

3.12 NC State and its agents shall not coerce, intimidate, retaliate against or discriminate against any student for exercising a right under applicable disability, or for assisting or supporting another person to exercise a right under such law.

4. Student Responsibilities

4.1 Each prospective student must meet the qualifications and maintain essential institutional standards for courses, programs, services, jobs, activities, and facilities.

4.2 Each student is responsible for making timely and complete disclosures and specific requests regarding accommodations to meet his or her particular needs so as to provide an appropriate response. Requests for accommodations should be made at least eight weeks prior to the date needed to avoid delays, which could affect participation in a program, service, or activity.

4.3 Each student seeking accommodations based on a disability must submit current documentation prepared by a qualified professional verifying the student's disability and any limitations. Students submitting incomplete information may be asked to provide additional verifying documentation. Students may be required to participate in additional evaluations needed to determine eligibility for an accommodation or what constitutes an appropriate accommodation.

4.4 Students with disabilities must abide by the Code of Student Conduct (POL11.35.01) in the same manner as all students.

4.5 In the event of a dispute about whether a student is eligible for an academic accommodation or about the provision of an accommodation by the university, the student should follow the Grievance Procedure for Undergraduate Students (REG11.40.01). Students may also file a charge of discrimination with the Office for Civil Rights.

5. College/Department/Faculty Responsibilities

5.1 NC State colleges, departments, and faculty will not discriminate in the recruitment, admission, educational process, or treatment of students with disabilities.

5.2 NC State requires all faculty and staff to read all communications from DSO and to comply with all requested accommodations as written. If the request for accommodations is unclear, appears to fundamentally alter the requirements of the course, or appears to be unreasonable, faculty and staff are expected to contact the DSO immediately. If a student requests accommodations and the faculty/staff member has not been notified of the student's need for accommodation, then the faculty/staff member should refer the student to DSO.

5.3 NC State faculty and staff will not counsel or advise qualified students with disabilities toward more restrictive career and/or academic objectives than non-disabled individuals with similar interests. This prohibition does not preclude providing factual information about licensing and certification requirements that may present obstacles to students with disabilities in their pursuit of particular careers.

5.4 NC State requires faculty to include information on the course syllabus and to make an announcement, at the beginning of the semester, inviting students with disabilities to schedule an appointment to discuss academic accommodations.

5.5 NC State will provide students with disabilities with access to university notices that is comparable to that provided to other students concerning all academic requirements.

6. Reasonable Accommodations For Students With Disabilities Procedure

6.1 DSO facilitates effective reasonable classroom accommodations for all students on campus who disclose a disability, meet eligibility criteria, and request accommodations.

6.2 Disclosing a Disability

6.2.1 A student disclosing a disability to the university, for the purpose of receiving accommodations under the ADA and/or Rehab Act, must do the following to register with DSS:

6.2.1(a) Complete a "DSO Application Form."

6.2.1(b) Complete the FERPA Consent to Release Information Form.

6.2.1(c) Arrange for appropriate diagnostician(s) to submit directly to DSO, by mail or fax, other documentation requested by DSO. Information about required documentation is available on the DSO web site.

6.3 Meeting Eligibility Criteria

6.3.1 DSO uses the submitted documentation to determine whether or not a student is covered under the ADA and/or Rehab Act. This determination process includes deliberation about:

6.3.1(a) Whether the student has a "physical or mental" impairment;

6.3.1(b) Whether the life activity on which the student relies amounts to a "major" life activity; and

6.3.1(c) Whether the specific impairment "substantially limits" that major life activity.

6.4 Requesting Accommodations

Once determined eligible by DSO to receive accommodations, the student must do the following to receive accommodations:

6.4.1 Schedule an appointment and meet with the DSO service provider to discuss accommodations. This meeting is required for accommodations to begin and will include:

6.4.1(a) A discussion about functional limitations and restrictions.

6.4.1(b) A discussion about the academic accommodations for which the student is eligible.

6.4.1(c) Completion of the "Accommodations Agreement Form" provided by the DSO service provider.

6.4.2 Review of DSO procedures for receiving accommodations.

Once registered with DSO, each semester the student must:

6.4.2(a) Complete a "DSO Request for Accommodations Form."

6.4.2(b) Submit the "DSO Request for Accommodations Form" to the DSO service provider so letters of accommodations can be sent to faculty.

6.4.2(c) Meet with each instructor, preferably during office hours, to discuss accommodations.