Common Accommodations (Instructors)

Review this page to learn about some common accommodation types and general best practices to follow. All the accommodation examples apply to undergraduate, graduate and continuing education courses unless otherwise specified.

For information on learning disabilities, refer to the Ontario Psychological Association Guidelines for Diagnosis and Assessment.

Receiving accommodation requests?

Visit the Accommodation Requests page for instructors to learn how to review and acknowledge requests from students.

Accommodation Requests

General examples of common accommodations

Tests and exams

  • Scheduling extra time for a test or exam
  • Scheduling one test or exam per day
  • Scheduling a day break between tests or exams
  • Assistive technology
  • Individual or small group room
  • Sensory adjustments (i.e., modified lighting, noise-cancelling headphones, earplugs, music devices)
  • Alternate time for a test or exam
  • Accessible formats (i.e., text format, Kurzweil, test copy printed on coloured paper)
  • Group exams: Allowing a student to write individual test components before joining group components


Online quizzes:

  • Scheduling extra time for the quiz
  • Scheduling one test or exam per day
  • Scheduling a day break between tests or exams

Pop quizzes:

  • Scheduling extra time for the quiz
  • Advance notice of quiz

Note: Test and exam accommodations may also apply.

Group work/projects

  • Extended time based upon individual student confidentiality
  • Allowing a student to complete work or project individually based upon individual student confidentiality
  • Specific or structured components assigned to each student in the group
  • Advanced communications with the instructor
  • Invitation to students with accommodations to discuss group work accommodations


  • Extensions (or an alternate lab with different questions if an extension is not permissible)
  • Breaking up or “chunking” the lab activities
  • Online labs (where possible)
  • Consideration of the physical environment (i.e., height-adjustable lab benches, alternate furniture)
  • Assistance from a lab partner or attendant
  • Preferred location with proximity to required lab equipment (i.e., sink, fume hood)
  • Emergency evacuation and safety plan

Note: Group work/projects accommodations may also apply.

Participation and attendance


  • In alignment with universal instructional design, consider alternate forms of evaluation in lieu of class participation (i.e., discussion questions, written reflections based on tutorial discussion or readings)
  • Distributing discussion questions in advance


  • Echo360 platform for asynchronous participation
  • Distributing slides and handouts in advance
  • Alternate form of evaluation in lieu of class attendance (may include evaluating in-class response systems)
  • ASL or CART services


  • Distributing questions in advance
  • Providing structured notes to use during the presentation
  • Using videos in lieu of live presentations
  • Written evaluation in lieu of presentation
  • Closed format (i.e., private meeting with the instructor)

Experiential learning

  • Adjusting the start or end time and providing extensions as needed
  • Providing breaks as needed
  • Designated site selection for specific disability-related reasons
  • Exclusion from lottery
  • American sign language (ASL) services
  • Personal attendant support
  • Transportation assistance
  • Quiet environments, assistive technology, ergonomic furniture
  • Specific, regular and advanced notice for scheduling
  • More frequent check-ins with supervisors, preceptors, etc.
  • Advanced accommodations planning

Performance-based evaluations

  • Individualized plans for specific accommodations
  • Closed sessions or individual offerings (i.e., individual objective structured clinical examination)
  • Breaks where necessary
  • For performances, video recordings of performances
  • Consideration of scheduling (i.e., time, number of assessments per day, breaks between assessments)
  • Separating written and practical components on different days
  • Time extensions
  • Receiving questions in advance (not typically applied to objective structured clinical examination or bell-ringers)


  • Individual plans for specific accommodations
  • Extensions
  • More frequent feedback
  • Alternate presentation methods (i.e., digital or hard copies)

Common graduate program evaluation accommodations


Oral exams:

  • Structured notes to use during the exam
  • Receiving questions in advance
  • Use of paper and pen to take notes
  • Closed format (i.e., private meeting with the instructor)

Comprehensive exams:

  • Extending the timeframe for exam preparation

Note: General test and exam accommodations may also apply.

Supervisory/committee reviews and meetings

  • Alternate times
  • More committee reviews
  • More scheduled supervisory meetings
  • Guidelines, expectations and conduct for supervisory relationship and communication
  • Receiving questions in advance
  • Preparing a structured agenda
  • Providing oral and written feedback


  • Additional or more frequent drafts for feedback and review

Note: Oral exam accommodations may also apply.