Apply for Accommodations

The review and approval of accommodation requests is a highly individualized and interactive process. Students may apply for accommodations at any point during their tenure at the University. However, accommodations are generally not able to be implemented retroactively. Applying by the recommended deadlines is strongly encouraged to help in accommodation facilitation and/or implementation.

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  • Academic, Dining, Housing, Parking, & Other
    Students requesting accommodations follow a three-part process:
    1. Complete an Accommodation Application (requires a VPN connection if off campus). This form is intended to be completed by the student, regardless of age. It allows for the student to describe their history, experiences, and impact of their disability on their everyday functioning in their own words.
    2. Supply documentation. In addition to information supplied by the student, documentation of a student’s disability is an important piece of the process of determining appropriate accommodations. Documentation should be relatively current and supplied by a professional who is highly knowledgeable and licensed to practice in their field. More detailed information can be found within the our Documentation Guidance. Documentation can either be supplied on the accommodation application or via the documentation upload module (requires a VPN connection if off campus)
    3. Complete an intake meeting. Upon submission of both an application and appropriate documentation, the Disability Services Accessibility Specialist will review all submitted materials to determine eligibility for an intake meeting with the student. Students will receive an invitation via their @richmond email address to book an appointment. Intake meetings do not require detailed planning on the student’s part; they are an interactive process and open conversation about the student’s history and experiences, as well as their documentation. While every meeting is different, they average around 40 minutes, with plenty of time to ask questions or work through concerns. In most instances, intake meetings result in formalized accommodations.
  • Academic: COM2 Communication-Second Language

    To apply for a COM2 Communication-Second Language accommodation, students must submit the following:

    • Accommodation Application
    • Ideal documentation
      • A psychoeducational evaluation completed while the student was a 9th grader in high school or later
        • Ideally includes both cognitive and achievement testing
        • Ideally includes test and subtest names, in addition to scores and/or percentiles
      • High school transcript
    • Personal statement (may be submitted in the same location as documentation) that includes:
      • History related to second language courses/instruction
      • Ideally includes historical evidence of a barrier to second language acquisition (e.g. high school second language experience, tutoring history, etc.)

    Please note: an evaluator’s recommendation or “requirement” related to a second language does not automatically qualify a student for this accommodation; this accommodation is typically based on a student’s history and normative (not relative) standardized scores within their psychoeducational evaluation.

    Upon receipt, the student’s application will be reviewed, and a final decision communicated through the DS portal system.

    If a student is approved for a COM2 Communication-Second Language accommodation, this information will be communicated to their College Dean and the University Registrar, and the student will be provided with next steps. Students are strongly encouraged to work with their advisor regarding this selection process.

    More detailed information on the COM2 Communication-Second Language accommodation process can be found here.

  • Housing: ESA
    ESA applications follow a somewhat similar process to a general housing accommodation application. 
    1. Emotional Support Animal Application. This form is intended to be completed by the student, regardless of age. It allows for the student to describe their history, experiences, and impact of their disability on their everyday functioning in their own words. In this instance, it’s important to make clear connections to their housing experiences.
    2. Documentation Submission. In addition to information supplied by the student, documentation of a student’s disability is an important piece of the process of determining appropriate accommodations. Documentation should be relatively current and supplied by a professional who is highly knowledgeable and licensed to practice in their field. For housing accommodations, it’s important that documentation clearly make a connection between an ESA, a student’s well-being/therapeutic benefit for the student, and housing needs. More detailed information can be found within our Documentation Guidance. To help streamline this process, students are strongly encouraged to have their provider fill out our Provider Request for Information (re: ESA) Input Form, as this helps to ensure the Committee has holistic information regarding your ESA request.
    3. Complete an intake meeting. Upon submission of both an application and appropriate documentation, the Disability Services Accessibility Specialist will review all submitted materials to determine eligibility for an intake meeting with the student. Students will receive an invitation via their @richmond email address to book an appointment. Intake meetings do not require detailed planning on the student’s part; they are an interactive process and open conversation about the student’s history and experiences, as well as their documentation. While every meeting is different, they average around 40 minutes, with plenty of time to ask questions or work through concerns. In most instances, intake meetings result in formalized accommodations.
    4. ESA Type Request FormOnce a specific animal is formally approved, which will be communicated via email, the student approved for the ESA is asked to reach out to each of their roommate(s) to inform them of their approval to bring an animal into their shared residence. Each roommate needs to submit an Animal Roommate/Suitemate Agreement Form, which indicates they know what animal has been approved and that they agree to live with the animal.
    5. Animal Roommate/Suitemate Agreement FormOnce a specific animal is formally approved, which will be communicated via email, the student approved for the ESA is asked to reach out to each of their roommate(s) to inform them of their approval to bring an animal into their shared residence. Each roommate needs to submit an Animal Roommate/Suitemate Agreement Form, which indicates they know what animal has been approved and that they agree to live with the animal.
    6. Service/Emotional Support Animals in On-Campus Housing Agreement. In addition to the roommate/suitemate agreement, the student approved for the ESA must also read and sign the University’s Service/Emotional Support Animals in On-Campus Housing Agreement. An important aspect of this agreement is for the student to supply the University with an Emergency Point of Contact (a non-member of the campus community) that is able to come to campus, pick up the animal in an appropriate timeframe, and care for it off campus if the approved student is unable to care for their animal for any reason. Students are welcome to either designate a specific person for their EPOC, or select a local boarding facility that is willing to come to campus and collect the animal. Once the EPOC is verified by Disability Services, students will receive a notice of final approval to bring their ESA into their campus residence.