Accommodations Guidance for Instructors

Guidance for instructors

General guidance

As an instructor, you may receive requests for flexibility from, or on behalf of, students for a variety of reasons, including scheduling conflicts, accommodations for people with disabilities, and supportive measures for students experiencing illness, crisis, or hardship. It is important for instructors to know where to direct students for support and what options are for being flexible. 

Instructors may wish to consult the "Requests for Accommodations, Adjustments, and Flexibility" page to help students connect with resources.

The Academic Supportive Measures Quick Guide for Instructors provides important information about responding to requests for supportive measures and accommodations.

Instructors may start with the responsible office for the circumstance in question or their department leadership. Instructors may also seek assistance from the Office for Faculty Equity and Welfare (OFEW) and the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) for guidance about their rights and responsibilities.

Circumstance-specific guidance

Inclusive pedagogy: Planning for flexibility

Consider using principles of inclusive teaching and universal design at the outset of your course design. Instructors and students alike benefit from approaching their course design with some room for flexibility.

Help is available. The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) is a good place to start for resources, confidential consultations, and evidence-based strategies. 

All instructors are encouraged to provide a link to the Academic Accommodations Hub in their course syllabi. The Office for Faculty Equity and Welfare also has suggestions for referring to accommodations and campus resources in a supportive way on your course syllabus. 

Additional resources for promoting an inclusive classroom climate include: 

"Inclusive teaching encompasses teaching strategies and approaches that take into account and welcome the wide range of identities, experiences, needs, and backgrounds that students bring to the class by creating a learning environment where all students can thrive. This can include course design and teaching strategies that you regularly incorporate into your class and a mindset you adopt to be responsive to fluctuating student needs and cultural moments." — Center for Teaching and Learning