Learn how the Access Centre for Students with Disabilities (ACSD) coordinates academic accommodations. Get informed about our services including individual planning, referral services, drop-in sessions, and more.
The role of the ACSD
We provide accommodations and other services to promote accessible learning and participation.
Consult the How to Register page for more information or book an appointment with an ACSD advisor.
Academic accommodations are adaptations or measures that reduce or eliminate barriers to participation.
Accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis. We consider supporting documentation and the functional limitations you're experiencing.
Accommodations are not meant to provide you with an advantage, modify course material or learning objectives. While accommodations reduce barriers related to academic participation, they do not guarantee a level of achievement.
All accommodations must be reasonable, taking into account your functional limitations, academic standards and course objectives, and time and resource constraints for all parties involved in coordinating the accommodation.
Accommodations must not interfere with the university’s ability to assess the essential learning outcomes of the course or program and must adhere to all academic standards and the university’s academic integrity policies.
We coordinate a variety of services and accomodations such as:
Sign language interpretation, transcribing
Accessible materials in alternate formats (e.g. braille, large print)
Hygiene and/or mobility attendants
Textbook/coursepack conversion services
Referrals & accessibility advisors
When you register with us, you will work with your ACSD advisor to determine the right accommodations to reduce your barriers to learning.
You will discuss your needs and the barriers you face in the academic environment with your ACSD advisor to create a unique accommodation plan.
This plan is developed through an in-depth discussion with your advisor and by reviewing your documentation. The accommodation plan can be modified to fit your needs as you progress through your time at Concordia.
ACSD advisors are well-connected professionals who will assist you in coordinating with internal and external support services.
Advisors can also coach you to advocate for yourself. This includes how to talk to professors or other professionals about your needs as a student with a disability.
ACSD online drop-in sessions
Virtual drop-in sessions are open to registered ACSD students and are held Thursday mornings. Look out for our email invites with the Zoom meeting information!
The drop-in sessions have been designed as an open-group discussion forum. They either focus on a specific theme, or have a Q&A format.
If you require an individual appointment, please email your ACSD advisor to set-up a meeting.
Exam accommodations are reasonable changes to the testing conditions that allow you to demonstrate your academic ability and fulfill course requirements.
As Concordia has moved to digital teaching and learning, ACSD students are no longer required to book any exams (online or take-home) with the ACSD in order to receive extended time accommodations.
Your professors will adjust the time for your online exams. We will send a letter of accommodations to your professors. Please follow-up with each of your professors directly to ensure that this step is completed.
E-text conversion service
If you're facing a learning barrier when using printed or hard copy texts, digital textbook and course-pack conversion services are available to you.
To access these services, you must have a "print disability" which is recognized under Canadian Copyright Law. This can include visual, mobility, perceptual or cognitive disabilities that severely impede text recognition.
Contact your ACSD advisor who will review your file to ensure that you qualify for textbook and/or coursepack conversion services. Please allow for a minimum of two weeks to process requests.
If you are physically able to manipulate textbooks and computers, you will receive training on how to convert your own materials.
If your accommodations include other formats such as audio, you will need to make this request with your advisor. Additional processing time will be needed.
Request textbooks in alternate formats
Below are steps to have a textbook converted to digital format. Please note, there is no guarantee we will receive a PDF from publishers.
Step 1 Obtain your booklist from The Book Stop, Concordia's online bookstore.
Before buying your textbook, check to see if an accessible digital version is available from an online retailer. If you cannot find your book in digital format, purchase the book from any retailer or from another person. Used books are eligible for conversion, as long as you have a receipt.
The Concordia bookstore sells digital files of many of its textbooks and coursepacks, but cannot guarantee that the files are accessible. We recommend that students who purchase their books from the Concordia bookstore buy the hard copies.