Students requesting academic accommodations in the classroom must present a letter prepared by SSD verifying the need for accommodations to each of their instructors (In the School of Law, students should request letters to the Assistant Dean for Student Services, who will make the accommodation arrangements). The student’s file at SSD must be in Active status prior to the preparation of these letters.
- The student must complete an Accommodation Letter Request Form and turn it into SSD. Forms are available in the SSD office, or you can submit your request online. Information needed to complete the form includes:
- Your name and EID
- Course name and number
- Unique number
- Instructor’s full (first and last) name
- It is the student’s responsibility to pick up the letters at SSD. When turning in the letter request form, the student will be told when the letters will be ready for the faculty to pick up. SSD does not mail faculty letters. It is the student’s responsibility to complete the form every semester that accommodations are requested.
- The student should then make appointments to meet with each professor to deliver the letters and discuss the accommodations that will be necessary in each class. It is important that the student provide accommodation letters to his/her instructors at the beginning of each long semester and, if approved for testing accommodations, far in advance of the first exam. When giving the instructor the letter, the student should discuss with the instructor how the accommodations best fit within his/her curriculum. If necessary, the Disabilities Services Coordinator is available to wok with the student and the instructor. Note: Students need to remind instructors at least five (5) days prior to each exam if they will need testing accommodations.
- Failure to follow these steps may hinder the provision of accommodations.
- Instructors are under no obligation to provide accommodations for a student who does not identify himself/herself as a student with a disability via an Accommodation Letter.
- The student is responsible for requesting new letters at the beginning of each semester.
- SSD will not be able to process forms with incomplete information.
- If a student needs to request a modification of his/her accommodations, the student should meet with his/her Disabilities Services Coordinator to discuss the change.
- Accommodations go into effect once the Accommodation Letter has been delivered; accommodations are not retroactive.
Temple University has created short videos about the different aspects of delivering and discussing your accommodation letter with your professor. Review these videos to learn more about approaching your professors to coordinate your accommodations.
Why are students responsible for delivering their own accommodation letters?
SSD will never reveal your confidential information to anyone outside our office without your written permission (see Confidentiality). It is the student’s responsibility to disclose their need for accommodations to the professor. You are not required to disclose the specific details or diagnosis of your disability in order to receive accommodations.
It is important for students to deliver Accommodation Letters in person so you can have a conversation with your professor about how the accommodations will be provided. Some accommodations require discussion and arrangements (how will you get a copy of notes, what flexibility, if any, can be offered with attendance and deadlines, or how testing accommodations will be handled). Students need to take an active role in setting up their accommodations with their professors. SSD is available to help if you run into any resistance or concerns from instructors about your accommodations.
And finally, it is important for students to learn how to advocate for themselves and their need for accommodations. Practicing and developing this skill while attending UT Austin can prepare students to be advocates for themselves in other areas of life. SSD’s Disabilities Services Coordinators are available to provide support for students during this learning process.