Accommodation Letter helps Students with Disabilities


Students with disabilities can be accommodated with a letter from Sheridan’s Accessibility Learning Services.

“Any student with a documented disability is eligible for this,” said Janice Galloway, a learning strategist at Trafalgar’s Accessible Learning Centre.

“A student with a learning disability would need a psycho-educational assessment done before they can get this.”

The form is a confidential letter that is transmitted to instructors allowing extra time on assignments and tests, record class lectures and reduce the number of courses they take at a time. For example, if the student has a test in a class that is two hours long, the student could get an extra half-hour to complete their test. This accommodation is only given if the student schedules to take their test at the Assessment Centre at their campus.

“I would get anxious during tests because I would only have so long and I was always scared I wouldn’t finish, so the extra time helps me focus more on the test instead of the time,” said Lyndsay Fraser, a second-year student in Sheridan’s Advertising and Marketing program.

“I also love the option of having notes taken for me. Sometimes I feel my notes aren’t good enough.”

The only information on it, aside from what they need, is the student’s name, student ID number, program name and counsellor.

“It helps that I have the support of the accessibility faculty,” said Owen Baxter-Derro, a third-year in Sheridan’s Media Arts program.

“It helps getting notes from my professors and I like writing my tests in a less-stressful area.”

The letter can also be given to students with documented mental and/or physical disabilities that they have been born with or developed through illness or injury.

The accommodation form isn’t the only thing Sheridan offers students with disabilities. The college also offers support in acquiring funding for an assessment if you suspect you have a disability or your documentation is older than five years.

Students with disabilities who are eligible for OSAP can apply for the Bursary for Students with Disabilities (BSWD), which will cover the cost of a psycho-educational assessment.

To get the letter, students must register with the college, and to do that, they will need to meet with a learning strategist. Appointments can be set up through the Student Advisement Centre.

Galloway says students with disabilities should take full advantage of the accommodations that are available to them.

“I believe students should use it because it levels the playing field and gives them an equitable education,” said Galloway.

“It takes some of them longer to do things, so they get anxious. The extra time helps them relax.”