Reasonable Accommodations Defined

What is Meant by Reasonable Accommodation?


The ADA stipulates that post-secondary institutions are responsible for providing necessary accommodations when a student declares a disability. Reasonable accommodations are made in order to level the playing field for otherwise qualified individuals with disabilities. As much as possible, accommodations are designed to minimize the functional limitations of an individual in a given task.

These adjustments permit students with disabilities the opportunity to learn by removing barriers that do not compromise academic standards. Wherever possible the disability is minimized as a measure of performance in the academic environment. This is typically accomplished with services or strategies focused on the end result, rather than the means by which that result is customarily achieved.

The amended law requires reasonable accommodations to be provided to otherwise qualified individuals with disabilities so those with disabilities can enjoy the benefits and privileges equal to those enjoyed by similarly situated individuals without disabilities. It requires agencies to provide reasonable accommodation for known physical or mental limitations of qualified others, unless to do so would cause undue hardship. The law also ensures equal access to Federal programs, activities, and facilities to people with disabilities.