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Center for Teaching and Learning

Policies and professionalism: Scenario two

The first midterm is a week away. A student in the class approaches you and says, “I have a learning disability. I am going to need more time to take the test.” What do you need to know to respond appropriately? What can you say to this student?



Federal and state law require that reasonable accommodations be provided to students with disabilities. Accommodations for a student with a disability must be requested by the student in “a timely manner” but may be requested at any time during the quarter. A student registered with the Office of Disability Resources for Students (DRS) receives a letter to give to her/his professors and TAs. The letter verifies the students’ disability status and outlines the reasonable accommodations for which the student is eligible. It is helpful to include a statement on the class syllabus inviting students with disabilities to discuss their academic needs with you. Please consult with DRS before denying an accommodation. Respect the confidentiality of the students by not sharing your knowledge of their disability status and need for accommodation with anyone who does not have a need to know under FERPA.

DRS serves as a resource for professors and TAs as well as for students.