Welcome to the Disability Resource Center (DRC). The DRC’s role at UF is to ensure access for students with disabilities as outlined by the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

The DRC created a resource for faculty about increasing the accessibility in the online learning environment. These principles can easily be applied to support diverse learners with various needs. For more information about increasing the accessibility of your course, please email accommodations@ufsa.ufl.edu.

Fall 2020 DRC Finals

Click here for more information about facilitating Final Exams with testing accommodations this semester.

Dear Instructors,

In anticipation of the Fall semester, the DRC would like to communicate how we remain available to support you in facilitating testing accommodations for your students as well as share important updates about testing at the DRC:

DRC students with testing accommodations in online classes: Test-in-Place

  • Given that the majority of courses will provide remote instruction, the DRC will limit facilitating accommodated tests in our center to only the courses that will be in person and utilize paper-based exams. To align with health and safety protocols, we will have limited testing spaces for physical distancing. As such, students with in-person–paper-based exams AND unique testing accommodations such as magnification of exam materials or assistive technology, will be given priority when scheduling their exams at the DRC.
  • We are communicating to students that it is important that they test-in-place as their testing accommodations can be added to their online assessment by their instructor.
  • The DRC remains available to provide assistance and answer questions for instructors that will add testing accommodations through online platforms such as Canvas, Honorlock, and Proctor U.

Gator-Accommodated Test Request (G-ATR) Testing Portal

  • Over the years, we have received instructor and student feedback regarding the usability of the Accommodated Test Request (ATR) system. We have been hard at work this summer with our partners in UFIT to build a unique system that meets the needs of our UF students with disabilities and their instructors.
  • We have launched a new testing portal that makes accommodated testing easier than ever, Gator-Accommodated Test Request (G-ATR) Testing Portal.
  • G-ATR allows instructors to verify receipt of accommodation letters, view and approve accommodated test request (ATRs) and directly communicate with DRC students within the portal.
  • Please note: Students in courses proving online assessments DO NOT need to use GATR. However, instructors can use GATR as a tool to organize accommodated test request. The portal will compile the testing accommodations for your courses. Instructors can use this information and add accommodations to Proctor U and Honorlock. Please let your students know if you would like them to submit their request in the GATR portal to help you organize the testing accommodations you receive. We are confident that you will find G-ATR helpful and easy to navigate. Please refer to the attached Instructor Guide for more information about using G-ATR.

If you have any questions or concerns, we invite you to attend our Testing Virtual Drop-In Hours any day of the week at 11am via Zoom. If this time doesn’t work, feel free to email us directly at DRCTesting@ufsa.ufl.edu and we can set up a one-on-one appointment.

Thank you for working hard to provide quality online instruction to our UF students with disabilities even through unprecedented times.

The Disability Resource Center has enhanced our file management system for academic accommodations. Starting Summer A, DRC students will be able to send accommodation letters to their instructors the same day they request the letter via our file management system. This also allows instructors to be reassured that the email and accommodation information accurate and coming directly from our office. Thanks to our partnership with UFIT, Gator360 and Salesforce, this new system will also allow us to track accommodations requested for any given course and facilitate a more streamlined communication between our office, UF students, and instructors.

In previous semesters, DRC students requested their accommodation letter via a webform. Our staff would then manually create accommodation letters and email students a PDF attachment of their letter. After which students would forward the letter to their instructors. After a year of consulting with students, instructors, and our DRC staff, we are excited to evolve to a better process. The sample accommodation letter provides an example of what you can expect to receive in your inbox moving forward. We hope that this process will enhance the access of students with disabilities as well as provide more support for instructors.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact our office if you have any questions or concerns DRC@ufsa.ufl.edu or 352-392-8565.

As classes remain online at UF during Summer 2020, some students may find that note services are not necessary in the online environment, as there are many alternatives. However, note services are still available to students that need them. The Disability Resource Center has updated our Note Services process to create an easier registration process for sending and receiving notes. You can find detailed information about this process on our Note Services webpage.

Instructors are no longer required to complete a note packet or webform. The DRC Note Service department will reach out to instructors individually if there are any concerns about the note taking process. We will continue to follow up with note takers regularly to ensure that accessible notes are submitted in a timely manner. We look forward to collaborating with you as we provide accessibility to your students.

Students may benefit from instructors utilizing automatic transcription software during their live video conferencing lectures. For more information about auto transcription and live captioning, please review the DRC’s Differences Between Live Captioning Service and Artificial Intelligence Auto Transcription guide sheet.

If you have any questions or concerns about our new process, please do not hesitate to email us at DRCNoteService@ufsa.ufl.edu. We are happy to help!

As a UF instructor you share a very important role in promoting and providing an accessible learning environment for students with disabilities. When students request disability-related accommodations, instructors should refer them to the DRC so that the DRC can identify suggested reasonable accommodations. If the DRC determines that reasonable accommodations may be necessary for the student to access their course, the DRC will create a suggested reasonable accommodations plan. DRC students are required to collaborate with their instructors to discuss this plan within the context of the course, the barriers they experience, and ways to create access in the course.

If faculty need assistance in creating access or providing accommodations or have concerns that they interfere with the essential requirements of the course, they should contact the DRC to collaborate about how to best serve the student. In no circumstances should faculty deny an accommodation without communicating with the DRC about the situation.

DRC staff members encourage instructors to contact us for consultation and presentations on disability related topics. For questions regarding a specific student’s accommodations, please contact the Learning Specialists listed on the student’s accommodation letter.

The University of Florida is committed to providing equal educational access to students with disabilities. As you are developing and/or updating your syllabi, please take a moment to review the university’s Policy on Course Syllabi which specifies the inclusion of the following recommended statement related to accommodations for students with disabilities:

“Students with disabilities who experience learning barriers and would like to request academic accommodations should connect with the Disability Resource Center by visiting our Get Started page. It is important for students to share their accommodation letter with their instructor and discuss their access needs, as early as possible in the semester.”

Please take the time to review this syllabus statement with the class and to specify preferred ways that you would like students to communicate with you about their accessibility needs.

If a student requests accommodations or self-identifies as a person with a disability who has not connected with the DRC, faculty should encourage the student to contact the DRC and request an initial appointment with a DRC Learning Specialist. Students can do so by calling (352) 392-8565.

If a student has not self-identified but you suspect they might want to connect with the DRC, please complete the ‘refer a student’ form and DRC staff will reach out to that student.

Students are often referred to the Disability Resource Center for a number of reasons which can include:
Suspicion of a possible learning disability or ADHD, acknowledgement of a psychological disorder, temporary or permanent physical disability, concerns about academic performance, and general questions or inquiries.

If you would like to refer a student to the Disability Resource Center, please feel free to complete the Refer a Student to the DRC form so one of our staff members can reach out to the student.

Confidentiality is very important to maintain for students with disabilities. Not all students will want to disclose their disability, although some may choose to share this information with you. Please be mindful and respectful of the students’ decision regarding self-disclosure because they are not required to disclose the nature of their disability or any medical documentation with instructors. A students’ disability and/or the fact that they use accommodations should not be announced in class. Individual conversations about students’ accommodations should be held in a respectful and private setting.

Governmental mandates, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) all support the protection of privacy.

DRC students will provide instructors with their DRC accommodation letter. This can be done via email or in person.

If emailed: The student needs to detail which specific accommodations on their letter they are requesting in your course. If they simply send you the letter, please follow up and ask them to describe their specific accommodation needs in your course. You may also ask the student to meet with you in person or over the phone to discuss their accommodations further.

In person: If the student submits their accommodation letter in person, please take a few minutes to discuss which specific accommodations the student is requesting in your course.

Faculty members are asked to work to provide the accommodations that are listed on the accommodation letter; they should refer students who request other accommodations to the DRC.

Occasionally, a student’s accommodation may cause confusion or concern for instructors either in understanding how to provide it or how it will work within the essential functions of the course.

If you are concerned that the accommodation may constitute a fundamental alteration to the course, then that accommodation may not be considered reasonable and appropriate in that course. Faculty should immediately contact the DRC. DRC will respond promptly with support, suggestions, or reasonable alternative accommodations.