Accommodations & Services

Services and accommodations provided by ADS

  • Orientation and help with transition from high school or community college
  • Help with course load and selection
  • Help with disclosing your needs to professors when providing them with your ADS memo
  • Priority registration beginning the second semester
  • Testing accommodations and use of the Testing Center
  • Note-taking assistance
  • Interpreting services
  • Alternate formats for printed materials
  • Short-term assistance with organization strategies and study skills
  • Assistive technology
  • Para-transit registration
  • Internship accommodations
  • Information and referral to resources on and off campus*

*Please note: ADS maintains a referral list for providers of diagnostic testing, content tutoring and long-term academic coaching.

Accommodations

In a higher education setting, accommodations are modifications or adjustments in the academic environment that enable a student with a disability to have equal access to the university’s programs, courses, services and activities. Providing accommodations should not compromise the essential elements of a course or program, nor weaken academic standards. Accommodations should provide an alternative way to accomplish the requirements by eliminating or reducing disability-related barriers and providing a level playing field. 

In implementing accommodations, ADS works closely with the student, faculty and staff through an interactive process.  In reviewing an accommodation requested by the student or recommended by an evaluator, ADS may need to consult with faculty and/or may find that the accommodation is not appropriate given the requirements of a course or program. This may include an accommodation that you previously received in high school or at another college. ADS may propose an alternative accommodation that would be effective, but which neither the student nor the evaluator has requested.

Important points to remember about your accommodations:

  • It is your responsibility to let your ADS specialist know as soon as possible if you experience any difficulties with either accessing your accommodations or if you think your accommodations need to be revised.
  • Professors should not provide accommodations on the basis of a disability without first receiving an official ADS memo.
  • Accommodations are NOT retroactive. Your professors will begin to provide you with your accommodations from the time they receive your ADS memo.
  • The purpose of an accommodation is to ensure access rather than success. Professors are not expected to modify or waive the essential requirements of a course or program.
  • The process of requesting and receiving accommodations is meant to be interactive. All people involved — the professor, the student and the ADS staff — have a shared responsibility to make sure the process works. You are expected to take an active role and advocate for yourself in a professional way. ADS is available to assist both you and your professor in implementing accommodations as they relate to specific course or program requirements.

Please see the Towson University Procedure for Students Seeking a Disability-Related Accommodation (06-21.00).

close-up of military person with books

Veterans May Be Eligible For Accommodations 

If you are a veteran entering or returning to college, you may not realize that you could be eligible for accommodations through ADS. ADS and the Military & Veterans Center at Towson University collaborate to provide veterans with information about ADS and how we can assist you. It's possible that your ability to learn may have changed, even if you did not experience learning difficulties prior to your military service. Or, you may now have a physical or medical condition that impacts your ability to have equal access to the educational environment.

Registering with ADS is voluntary and strictly confidential. You can initiate the process by phoning 410-704-2638 or you can submit a ADS application.

Internship Accommodations

Please be aware that you may request an accommodation for an internship. An internship accommodation may more closely resemble a job accommodation rather than an academic accommodation. Internship accommodations require advance planning and often involve a significant amount of interaction between the academic program, ADS and the student. If you will be participating in an internship experience, plan to discuss whether accommodations will be needed with your ADS specialist as early as possible.

WHY USE ACCOMMODATIONS?

Freshmen Using Accommodations Have Higher GPAs

A ADS study compared the difference in first semester GPAs between freshmen who used accommodations and freshmen who did not.  The difference was significant.  The average GPA of ADS students using accommodations was a 3.05 (B grade), as compared to a 2.50 (C+ grade) for ADS students not using accommodations.