Accommodations and Services

The University offers many services to its students with disabilities. We arrange these accommodations on an individual basis for each eligible student with a disability during the intake/eligibility process.

Examples of Accommodations

  • Pre-admission counseling and new student orientation
  • Academic accommodations and counseling
    • priority registration and scheduling
    • alternative testing
    • alternative formats for printed material e.g. e-text, RFB&D
    • auxiliary aids and services (including notetakers, laboratory assistants, readers and/or scribes , sign language/oral interpreters and captioning services)
    • assistive listening devices
    • assistive technology
  • Residential accommodations and counseling
  • Financial aid counseling
  • Transportation and parking services
  • Referral and liaison services to agencies such as the Commission on the Deaf and Hearing Impaired, Bureau of Rehabilitation Services, Board of Education Services for the Blind, as well as Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic for recorded texts
  • Information and referral source to [all] various University and community programs and services

Definitions of Common Accommodations and Auxiliary Aides

Lab Assistants

Lab assistants are hired by SDS to assist students registered with SDS in lab courses. Lab assistants help students with disabilities accomplish lab tasks, (e.g. handling/carrying equipment, mixing chemicals, etc.)  and follow established, safe lab procedures at all time. Lab Assistants do not offer or provide hints, memory help, or answers to the student.

Note Taker

A note taker is a student assistant hired by SDS to take notes for a student registered with SDS. It is the responsibility of the note taker to provide clear and concise notes and upload them to the SDS online services site within 24hrs of the end of class. Note takers are not a substitute for class attendance-SDS students who utilize note taking as an accommodation must attend class regularly.

Personal Assistant (PA)

A Personal Assistant is a paid employee who assists a person with a disability in order to accomplish daily tasks. This can include: dressing, grooming and hygiene, mobility and transfers, toileting, housekeeping and miscellaneous tasks. Personal Assistants not only assist people with physical disabilities, but with other types of disabilities as well.

PAs are hired, employed, and supervised directly by the individual. SDS cannot directly provide or manage PA services due to liability concerns, but SDS can advise students on obtaining funding, recruiting/hiring PAs and managing your PAs.  We can also assist you with making sure that your PA can meet your specific needs by working with you to develop PA requirements and trainings.


Volunteer or employee of a blind or partially sighted individual who reads printed material in person or for audio recording. A reader does not provide tutoring assistance (please see “Tutor” definition).


Performing exam assistance: Scribes offer assistance to our student with writing, manipulating test materials, or other test-taking assistance. Scribes do not offer or provide hints, memory help, or answers to the student. If you believe the student has dictated the wrong answer on a test, please write down the student's answer, without comment. If a student has questions about the exam content or procedures, please direct the student to ask the proctor for assistance.