Program Overview

The University of St. Thomas understands that students come to the learning environment with various learning styles. The Disability Resources staff acknowledges that individuals with documented disabilities have unique needs which often can be reasonably accommodated through a variety of services.

Students with disabilities who require accommodations must identify themselves to the Disability Resources staff and present appropriate documentation of their disability. In cases where the student’s disability is extremely evident, Disability Resources may determine it unnecessary for him or her to provide documentation. Students should request accommodations in a timely manner before courses, programs, or activities begin for accommodations such as notetakers or extended time to complete exams. Such reasonable accommodations and adjustments are made available in accordance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. These accommodations vary with individual students and their particular disabilities.

Reasonable academic accommodations depend upon the nature and severity of the student’s documented disability. Eligibility for academic accommodations does not necessarily imply that a particular accommodation must be granted if it is deemed unreasonable and other suitable techniques are available. Reasonable academic accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis and should not alter academic standards in any way or cause undue burden to the university. Requests for accommodations that take extensive time to prepare such as alternate format texts, sign language interpreters, or computer aided real-time transcription should be made immediately following the assigned registration date during the early registration period for the upcoming semester. Failure to comply within the stated time frame may result in a delay or denial of the accommodations.

Disability Resources

Students qualify for services through the Disability Resources office upon self-disclosure of a disability that substantially limits a major life activity, and upon presentation of appropriate documentation. Students work collaboratively with staff to determine reasonable and appropriate academic accommodations.

In a meeting with Disability Resources staff to determine and verify the request for reasonable academic accommodations, an Accommodations Request Form will be completed. Students are expected to proactively participate in obtaining and arranging their accommodations, as well as meeting with their professor(s) and discussing with them any academic accommodations(s) at the beginning of the semester. Disability Resources does not automatically inform professors about students’ eligibility for accommodations; it is students’ responsibility to make an appointment each semester to facilitate this process.

What academic accommodations are available?

Although this is not a comprehensive list, academic accommodations may include:

  • alternate exam arrangements (extended time, alternate location, alternate format, computer for essay exams)
  • readers and scribes for exams
  • alternate format texts (audio, electronic, Braille)
  • assistive technology
  • notetakers
  • alternative ways of completing assignments (e.g. oral presentation versus written paper)
  • taped class lecture
  • priority registration
  • computer aided real time translation
  • assistive listening devices
  • sign language interpreters
  • captioned/transcribed classroom videos

What academic services are available?

  • information and referral sources
  • liaison to professors
  • course substitution in foreign language or math (if approved by Committee on Studies)
  • assistance in developing self-advocacy skills
  • one-to-one counseling as it pertains to an individual’s disability
  • pre-screening interviews to determine if further testing is required to identify a potential learning disability or Attention Deficit Disorder