Rights & Responsibilities of Students with Accommodations - Accessibility @ TU

Rights and Responsibilities of Students Using Accommodations

Students should read this carefully and discuss any questions with Student Access ahead of the semester to make sure they fully understand all policies and how to use their accommodations. Students must meet with a Student Access professional staff member before they begin using accommodations to review these procedures and learn how to set up their accommodations as stated in the Letter of Accommodation.

Records and Registration

  • Students must self-identify to Student Access to initiate a request for accommodations. Students must ensure that required documentation regarding their specific disability has been reviewed by the University prior to the initiation of services. Student Access reserves the right to deny any request for support service(s) until complete documentation has been received, reviewed, and approved by the University.
  • Disability services are initiated when the application process is complete, and approval is granted by the University through an accommodation outcome letter. Student Access does not provide retroactive accommodations.
  • Some accommodations provided at the secondary school level are not appropriate at the collegiate level and students must prepare accordingly. The Americans with Disabilities Act and Amendments focuses on providing access and not success. The University of Tulsa will provide full access to educational programs and opportunities. The University may provide alternative reasonable accommodations rather than the specific accommodation requested by the student and not all requested accommodations will necessarily be approved. Students may wish to provide information about past accommodations to assist in the accommodation request process, and documents such as IEPs and 504 plans may be appropriate documentation in some circumstances. The institution is not required to fundamentally alter its programs in order to accommodate students.
  • Temporary arrangements may be available while the University engages in an interactive process to determine whether ongoing accommodation is appropriate and, if so, which reasonable accommodations are needed; any temporary arrangements do not reflect a determination that ongoing accommodation will be granted, and/or which reasonable accommodations are appropriate, and do not create an obligation on the part of the University to continue accommodation. Students who are approved for temporary arrangements for temporary health conditions are only allowed to use those arrangements for a limited time. To get full permanent accommodations, students must have a disability as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act and Amendments.
  • Students must notify Student Access and the College Advising Office if they need assistance determining appropriate academic course requirements or class schedules.
  • Students are responsible for planning their schedules and meeting with their Academic Advisor in their College to decide what classes to take. Students should take into account any disability issues when scheduling classes (e.g., take classes at ideal times for their medication or disability needs; schedule to allow adequate time to get from class to class throughout the day; schedule in breaks as needed to manage disability issues; consider amount of reading involved in classes, length of class times, class sizes; and schedule classes with enough time in between to enable completion of exams using their extended time—so try to avoid back-to-back classes; etc.) and schedule their classes in ways that will best accommodate their needs.
  • Students should locate their classes ahead of the semester and make sure they are accessible to them (e.g., go inside each classroom and see if it has the things needed, such as special tables, wheelchair access, etc.). If there is a problem with any classroom, students should report the problem to Student Access as soon as possible to receive assistance.
  • Students with disabilities are eligible for priority registration. Students are responsible for making an appointment with their Academic Advisor prior to the regularly scheduled registration date. The College of Law and Graduate School do not offer priority registration.
  • Students are encouraged to proactively discuss their needs privately with instructors for the best support. Dialogue between students and faculty can be key to ensuring accommodations work. Students may voluntarily choose to disclose details in order to facilitate the best assistance from faculty.
  • In the event that a student changes their major, name, address or telephone numbers, they must notify Student Access.
  • To request a change in accommodations, students must complete a Request for Change in Accommodations on the Accessibility Services Portal. This must be accompanied by documentation which demonstrates how the academic demand has been modified and/or how the disabling condition has changed.
  • Student Access administers accommodations for undergraduate students and Graduate School students. The Law School administers accommodations for students in their classes (more information on those processes and procedures is available from the Law School in their policies).
  • If at any point a student has difficulty with their accommodations or additional needs, they should contact Student Access staff as soon as possible for assistance.


  • Student Access is committed to ensuring that all information and communication pertaining to a student’s disability is maintained as confidential as required or permitted by law. Our guidelines regarding this information are as follows:
  • No one will have immediate access to student files in this office except appropriate Student Access staff. Any information regarding a disability is considered confidential and can only be shared with others within the University who have a legitimate educational interest. All staff members have received training about protecting student privacy and have agreed not to release any information outside of this office without the permission of a professional staff member.
  • This information is protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, Section 504 of PL.94-142, and the ADA-AA.
  • Students should notify Student Access if they are experiencing a disability-related difficulty with an instructor, an accommodation, or an access barrier.
  • Information in student files will not be released except in accordance with federal and state laws.
  • If a student wishes to have information about his/her disability shared with others outside the University, the student must provide a written request by signing a Release of Information form. The student should understand the purpose of the release and to whom the information is being released.
  • Students who would like to share confidential information with campus personnel or with any other person/agency must initiate this request in writing by completing a Release of Information form available from a Student Access staff or online.


  • Once approved by the University, students retain their accommodations for the duration of their student status at the University of Tulsa. Students are not required to use their approved accommodations.
  • Students must notify instructors or relevant staff (e.g., Housing and Dining) to activate their accommodations. Students are responsible for requesting the distribution of the emailed letters from Student Access to instructors/staff (by logging on to the Accessibility Services Portal and requesting this by class) at the beginning of each semester or as soon as accommodations have been approved.
  • Only students that have signed the Student Rights and Responsibilities will be able to send the Notice of Required Accommodations Letters. These letters describe the student’s individual academic accommodations and special needs, and do not include diagnoses. These letters serve as the only official method of notification to the instructor/staff. Each letter is addressed specifically to an instructor for a particular class.
  • The Notice of Required Accommodations Letter notifies the instructor what accommodations should be provided and can be discussed with each instructor privately during faculty office hours or before or after class. Students should discuss with instructors/staff the authorized accommodations they would like to have implemented and ensure the instructors/staff did receive the Notice of Required Accommodations Letter via email.
  • Instructors can access a list of students who have accommodations in their classes by semester in the Accessibility Services Portal, but this does not contain any information beyond accommodations. In the Law School, faculty cannot access lists of students with accommodations and accommodation letters are not sent to faculty and only to the Associate Dean of the Law School or designee for administration.
  • Students receiving Housing and Dining accommodations should take their accommodation outcome letter to the Housing and Dining Office to activate and arrange for those accommodations.
  • Students are encouraged to speak with their instructors regarding their needs to receive the best assistance. Whenever possible, students should contact instructors prior to the start of classes to discuss their needs and ensure that their accommodations can work in the class, particularly if an instructor needs to make any modifications and will need time to accomplish this. Students have multiple methods for communicating with instructors/staff about their needs. Students may meet instructors in class and talk before or after class, e-mail instructors, go to office hours, and/or request a private meeting at a specific time.

Other Responsibilities

  • Students at post-secondary institutions are considered to be adults. Students are expected to take responsibility for their own academic success. Students plan and utilize their own study time and seek help when they feel it is needed.
  • For special accommodations that require a service provider (such as notetaking assistance, CART, interpreters, CAN, etc.) students must email Student Access (studentaccess@utulsa.edu) a request prior to every semester. Please allow as much time to arrange these services as possible and see guidelines under each specific accommodation for time frames for submitting this type of request. Services generally take several weeks to coordinate, so students should plan accordingly.
  • If a student is in need of personal attendants, private one-on-one tutoring, special transportation, assistance with completing homework, assistive technology of a personal nature, or other personal services, it is necessary for the student to arrange for these services on their own as it is not a function of a post-secondary institution to provide them.
  • Students who begin to experience difficulty in a course are responsible for informing a staff member at Student Access to allow adequate time to suggest appropriate alternatives. Students with disabilities are encouraged to purchase tuition insurance (see the Bursar) in the event they may need to withdraw based on a health or other issue. Students are also encouraged to take advantage of the following related services available to all students at the University:

Student Success Center

  • All students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with and take advantage of services provided by The Student Success Team, including Student Access, Student Success Coaching, and tutoring. To request a student success coach to improve study skills, students should email successcoaches@utulsa.edu.


  • For tutoring, students can directly schedule an appointment with a tutor through the Tutoring Services page.

Alternative Formats
Alternative Testing
Audio Recording, Lecture Transcripts, & Notetaking Services
Classroom Access Needs
Housing and Dining
Unspecified Accommodations