Faculty Responsibilities for Students with Disabilities


Under the Americans with Disabilities Act as amended in 2008 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, Occidental College’s Disability Services and Student Support Office (DSSS) provides reasonable academic and other accommodations to qualified students who request them. This policy describes the rights and responsibilities of faculty and staff when interacting with students who have been granted an accommodation by the DSSS.


All Faculty and Staff members are expected to abide by the rights and responsibilities listed below when interacting with students who have been granted an accommodation by the Disability Services Office.


A. Faculty/Staff Have the Right to:

  • Consider a student’s request for accommodations only if the student has provided the faculty/staff members with an official accommodation letter each semester;
  • Consult with Disability Services to clarify student requests for accommodations, academic adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids and services; and
  • Uphold all expectations and standards for classroom behavior and academic performance equally for all students.

B. Faculty/Staff Have the Responsibility to:

  • Provide accommodations in a fair and timely manner. Providing accommodations is not negotiable; however, the way in which accommodations are provided is negotiable. It is the responsibility of faculty and staff to promptly implement academic adjustments and aids for students after they have been approved by the Disability Services and Student Support Office (DSSS);
  • Maintain confidentiality when working with students with disabilities;
  • Determine the curricula of their courses and ensure that the proposed accommodations do not alter essential academic requirements;
  • Contact DSSS if they believe an approved accommodation fundamentally alters their course requirements;
  • Promote equal educational opportunity to all students without regard to race, religion, gender, ability, age, national origin, or other non-merit factors;
  • Distinguish between content and activities that are essential to a course/program from those that are not essential and, thus, may be accommodated;
  • Cooperate with procedures established by Disability Services, such as reviewing, signing, and returning forms for test accommodations, facilitating the use of note-takers, etc.; and
  • Include a syllabus statement on accessibility. Faculty members may use the following statement on their course syllabi: "All academic and housing accommodation requests are managed by Disability Services & Student Support (DSSS). It is a student’s responsibility to contact DSSS if they need accommodations or additional support. Any student who has, or thinks they may have, a physical, learning, or psychological disability may contact Disability Services at accessibility@oxy.edu to learn about available services and support. More information is available at http://www.oxy.edu/disability-services."

Faculty members should not seek to make arrangements on their own to accommodate students with disabilities. If a student approaches you for a disability-related accommodation, please refer them to DSSS.


Responsible Officer(s):  Associate Dean for Student Academic Affairs

Effective Date: 2005

Last Revision Date: January, 2024


Academic Accommodations Policy