skip navigation

Florida Gulf Coast University

Website Directory  

Adaptive Services

Faculty and Staff Resources



FGCU Office of Adaptive Services Common Accommodations Defined


The Office of Adaptive Services works in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 in order to supply support services for qualifying students. The Office of Adaptive Services is responsible for obtaining and maintaining disability-related documentation, and for ensuring that student requests for accommodations are appropriately provided. Request forms detailing the necessary accommodations for the student will be sent to the appropriate professors. Definitions for the most common accommodations are provided below.


Classroom Accommodations


Based on the accommodations, some students may need certain services or may need special consideration in a classroom setting. The following are common accommodation requests:

  • Record Lectures: The student may need to record the lectures during class in order to have them for reference. The student needs the permission of the instructor, as well as an accessible location for the recording device.

  • Note Taker: The student may have a note taking accommodation where they may need a fellow student to take notes during the class period. In that instance, the student would request a note taker through Clockwork, the Adaptive Services online booking management system.

  • Preferential Seating: Due to a disability, a student may need to sit in a specific location in the classroom in order to better use his or her environment. Wheelchair access seating also falls within this category.

  • Oral Instruction: The student may need to have instructions read by the instructor instead of written or typed text.

  • Alternate Format text: The student receives textbooks in an alternate format supplied either by Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic or staff employed at the Office of Adaptive Services.

  • Ability to Leave Class Periodically: The student may need to leave class periodically due to the conditions of his or her disability. The instructor is asked not to penalize the student unless the situation is inappropriate –during an exam, for example.

  • No Penalty for Absences: The student may miss class periodically due to conditions of his or her disability. The instructor is asked not to penalize the student for occasional absences and to allow the student to make up work. Documentation explaining that absence(s) is / are related to disability is required.

  • Interpreter: Students may need a sign language interpreter. The students are required to fill out an “Interpreter Request Form” that is available in the Office of Adaptive Services. In order to accommodate the interpreter, the instructor is asked to supply the interpreter ahead of time with a copy of any notes used during the lecture or handouts used during the class. The professor is also asked to inform the interpreter of any audiovisual presentation so that Closed Captioning can be arranged.


Exam Accommodations

Instructors are encouraged to provide testing and quiz accommodations for the students as much as possible.  However, if an instructor is physically, or logistically, unable to provide the testing accommodations, Adaptive Services can proctor exams and quizzes.  Students are required to provide Adaptive Services with a completed Test Schedule Form, including the instructor's information and signature, before he or she is able to test. The forms are available as a hard copy in the Office of Adaptive Services and must be turned in within 4 business days of the testing date.

Please note: all test proctoring in Adaptive Services is on a first come, first serve basis and due to scheduling needs, students may be referred back to the instructors for providing the necessary exam accommodations.

Some common accommodations the student may need during an exam are as follows:

  • Extended Time: Students who require extended time can take their exams in the Office of Adaptive Services if the instructor is unable to accommodate them in the classroom for the extended period of time. Students are responsible for notifying the Office Staff of any upcoming exams and making an appointment to take the exam in advance. The Testing Coordinator or other staff member of Adaptive Services then emails the instructor requesting a copy of the test. For extended time, the general time allotment is “time and a half” –indicating that the student can have the entire class period, plus half of the length of the class period –to finish the exam. Individual requirements and exceptions can be dealt with on a case-by-case basis.

  • Low Distraction Environment: Students who request this accommodation need to test in a quiet room such as an office or cubicle. The Office of Adaptive Services is equipped with multiple cubicles and a quiet room in where the students can test. Students who require this as an accommodation are welcome to use the Office of Adaptive Services during office hours.

  • Audio /Recorded Exam: Some students need their exams read aloud or recorded. If the instructor does not wish to read aloud or record the exam, they can forward it to Adaptive Services in advance and it will be done by the office staff.

  • Computer / Word Processor: Some students require a word processor for their exams. If the instructor does not have access to a computer the classroom, Adaptive Services has computers to test on.

  • Use of Calculator: Some students may require the use of a calculator on exams. If this is necessary, either the professor or the Adaptive Services Staff must inspect the calculator to determine if it is appropriate for testing purposes.

 Some accommodations, specified under “other”, are unique to a student’s given disability and personal needs. Any specific accommodations will be explained to the instructor on a case-by-case basis.

 Any questions or concerns in regards to any of the accommodations listed here or on the accommodation forms can be directed to Adaptive Services at 590-7956 or at

© FGCU 07/07/2014 13:07. This is an official FGCU web page.


Accommodating Students with Psychiatric Disabilities:



Additional useful resources:

 AHEAD (Association On Higher Education and Disabilities)


Disability References and Resources:


Americans with Disabilities Act


National Clearinghouse on Learning Disabilities


National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke


National Federation of the Blind


National Association of the Deaf


ADA Accessibility Guidelines