Disability Services

Help for students with disabilities

The Office of Disability Services for Students is dedicated to ensuring that students with disabilities have the tools, support services, and resources that allow equal access and reasonable accommodations to be successful at Indiana University Bloomington.

We work with you and appropriate university personnel to offer equal access to learning, educate the IU Bloomington community about diversity and inclusion, and link you to essential resources for success.

Do I qualify for accommodations?

Indiana University will provide reasonable accommodations to any student with a qualifying disability under the ADA. Accommodations are available for placement testing, course work and exams, and campus mobility. Whether you have a permanent or temporary disability, you can register for services through the Office of Disability Services for Students.

a person leaning over a testing sheet, filling in an answer

Learn more about DSS

Disability Services for Students provides support services for students with disabilities and facilitates reasonable accommodations on-campus and in the classroom. A reasonable accommodation is any modification or adjustment that will enable a qualified student with a disability to participate in a course, program, activity, or service. Reasonable accommodations assure that students with disabilities have rights, privileges, and access equal to students without disabilities.

Reasonable accommodations include a wide range of services and are specific to each student.

Academic accommodations are modifications or adjustments that ensure that students with disabilities have equal access to course instruction, materials, and evaluation. The accommodations must be reasonable and cannot fundamentally alter or compromise the essential requirements of a course or create an undue burden. Examples of reasonable accommodations include extended time on exams, testing in reduced distraction environments, permission to record lectures, or using your laptop to take notes.

Adaptive technology includes hardware and software designed to alleviate vision, hearing, cognitive, and mobility impairments, as well as alternate format books and classroom materials.

If you are in need of assistive technology, you must be referred by your access coordinator to Assistive Technology and Accessibility Centers (ATAC). The key to receiving services from ATAC is planning ahead. Due to the volume and complexity of this work, ATAC must receive your request at least three weeks in advance of when the material or adaptive technology is needed. Requests not received within this timeframe may result in a delay of the material or adaptive technology delivery.

Service animals, as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), are “dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities.” The university also recognizes miniature horses as a service animal consistent with relevant ADA guidelines and regulations. Examples of tasks that a service animal might perform include:

  • Guiding a person who is blind
  • Alerting a person who is deaf
  • Pulling a wheelchair
  • Alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure
  • Reminding a person with mental illness to take prescribed medications
  • Calming a person with post-traumatic stress disorder during an anxiety attack

Service animals are welcome anywhere their handlers are permitted on campus (exceptions may exist for health and safety reasons). Contact DSS if you have any questions or concerns.

Emotional support animals are not considered service animals under the ADA, and they are not granted access to areas of public accommodation at IU Bloomington. They are permitted in student housing with prior approval from DSS and RPS.

Generally, all classrooms on campus are accessible. However, occasionally due to construction or maintenance issues, you may find a classroom to be inaccessible to you. If you find that a classroom is inaccessible for any reason, contact your access coordinator right away to discuss options. Please notes it may take up to 10 business days to fulfill a Physical Access Modifications request.

If you need an adjustable table instead of a desk, or any other accessible furniture, your access coordinator will work with Campus Facilities to arrange for furniture placement. This may require additional time, so please visit your classrooms prior to the first day of class to assess what may be needed. You will need to follow this process each semester.

The Office of Disability Services for Students (DSS) offers accessible van service for Indiana University Bloomington students who have a severely limiting permanent mobility disability.

If space is available, students with temporary mobility limitations may be accommodated on a first-come, first-serve basis. The service provides rides only to your scheduled classes during standard hours of operation.

Your access coordinator is available to meet with you to discuss concerns related to your classes, instructors, or other issues that are affecting your academic progress. They can help you balance your course load to address your disability needs, provide self-advocacy coaching, and connect you with other resources on campus. Should you need assistance in communicating any concerns regarding the implementation of your approved accommodations with faculty or staff, your access coordinator can provide direction on how to communicate your needs or concerns, and in some cases may help facilitate these conversations. Or refer you to the appropriate campus or community resources.

As a participant in our Collegiate Life Coaching program, you have the option to work one-on-one with a DSS access coordinator to find ways to study and manage your time effectively in a college environment.

Topics include:

  • Scheduling and time management
  • Study skills, such as notetaking and exam preparation
  • Organizational skills for papers and projects
  • Overcoming procrastination
  • Academic goal setting 

The intention of the Collegiate Life Coaching program is to help you obtain transferrable skills that allow you to function independently in the university environment.

For more information about coaching, contact your access coordinator.

Faculty are our #1 Accessibility Partners

Faculty play a key role in creating a welcoming, inclusive, and accessible educational environment at IU Bloomington. If you are a faculty member, the Office of Disability Services for Students can help you understand your responsibilities for providing academic accommodations to students with disabilities.

Review the Faculty Handbook