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COVID-19 and Online Learning Update:

Due to the university's response to COVID-19, most AAS programs and services are offered remotely. Refer to relevant sections of this website for specific updates.


Access to Education: A Shared Responsibility

Access to education for students with disabilities is a human right in Ontario, Canada.

Through provincial law and university policies, the university recognizes that academic accommodation is a shared responsibility between the student, their instructors*, Academic Accommodation Support (AAS) and university administration. Collaboration and communication are essential between all stakeholders to ensure equal access while upholding the university's academic integrity standards.

See the PDF fileAcademic Accommodation Support Teaching Handbook for more information or review Senate Policy 159: Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Use our secure AAS Faculty Portal to view student accommodation plans and acknowledge that you are aware of each student’s accommodations and test requests.

Accommodation plans outline an individual student’s needs for an equitable experience in your course. 

Accommodation plans include:

  • A list of the student’s accommodations.
  • The contact information for their Student Accommodation Facilitator.

Students are responsible for sending their accommodation plans to you through the AAS Student Portal. We encourage students to send their plans as soon as possible after registration with AAS (and at the start of subsequent semesters). As students register with AAS throughout the academic year, you may receive accommodation plans at any point in the semester.

Once the student has sent the plan:

  1. You will receive an email prompting you to review their accommodation plan on the AAS Faculty Portal.
  2. To review the plan: click on the link provided and log in with your credentials.
  3. Consider how the accommodations fit with your course/program delivery, as well as the essential requirements, as identified on your course outline. If needed, contact the Student Accommodation Facilitator listed on the plan to discuss the accommodations in more detail.
  4. Using the online system, confirm that you have read the plan, including the student’s required accommodations for your course. 

Understand that the nature of a student’s disability, as well as their registration with AAS, is strictly confidential; information is not to be discussed beyond those who need to know the details in order to fulfill their job responsibilities, such as the course’s assigned instructor(s) and teaching assistants.

Including this google docCourse Outline Statement, external link directing students with disabilities to connect with AAS is a first step. Also consider adding a sentence in your syllabus that encourages students to talk privately with you about their accommodation plans. Remember to focus on the accommodations and not the nature of their disability.

Finding the balance between essential academic requirements and reasonable, appropriate accommodation is a central practice for providing accessible education. 

Essential requirements are “the knowledge and skills that a student must acquire and demonstrate to meet successfully the learning objectives of a course or program.” (Senate Policy 159).  A student with accommodations is not exempt from meeting essential academic requirements, as stated in the program curriculum and/or the course outline.

Accommodations should not alter the core requirements of what a student must learn and demonstrate, but instead shift how a student “receives course curriculum and materials, participates in course activities, or demonstrates mastery of course content and skills” (Policy 159). 

Consult with us if you identify an accommodation that is incompatible with the essential requirements of your course. 

Contact the Student Accommodation Facilitator identified in a student’s accommodation plan with any questions or concerns.

You can also visit the Faculty FAQ for more detailed information about common questions and concerns.

*“Instructor” refers to all teaching staff, including faculty and part-time/sessional contract lecturers.