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Frequently Asked Questions


I had a 504 plan in high school.  Will it transfer to the University of Iowa?

No, it will not.  Services received during K-12 are covered under different legislation than those received during college.  A 504 plan is useful in terms of highlighting what has been helpful to a student in the past, but the range of accommodations and services available in college may differ.

I am a prospective student.  May I meet with someone from your office during my campus tour?

We would be happy to meet with you during your tour of campus.  Please coordinate this request through the Admissions Visitors Center so they can integrate your visit with the rest of your campus tour.

Should I self-identify that I have a disability during the admission process? 

Disclosing your disability during the admission process is voluntary and is a separate process from requesting accommodations.  The University of Iowa will not discriminate against you due to your status as a disabled individual.  If you are applying under the Individual Review Process and you believe that your disability is related to your Regents Admission Index score it might be helpful to include this information in your personal statement.

If I am a student with a disability attending the University of Iowa, will my advisor and instructors seek me out to make sure I am provided services?

No.  You must self-identify as an individual with a disability to receive services from our office.  Each semester you must initiate contact with our office to complete your accommodations form for each class and you must then present the form to the instructor to obtain accommodations.

Can my parents be involved in this process?

If you would like them to be.   A Consent to Release Info form is available at our office which would allow us to speak with your parents about your accommodations and to be able to respond to specific questions they may have.

How will you determine if my condition meets the definition of a disability that is used in college?

Our documentation guidelines are public. The documentation of your condition must be current and specific.  If you are having testing done for use in requesting accommodations at the University of Iowa, please refer the assessor to this resource.  Once we receive your documentation and Request for Services and Documentation Review Form (RSDR), we will review your materials and provide a determination of eligibility.

Who is responsible for paying for documentation to verify my disability?

You are responsible.  We have made arrangements for lower cost assessment batteries for Learning Disabilities, Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, and Psychological Disabilities at several clinics here on campus.

If I have received accommodations at a different college or university, will I automatically receive the same accommodations at the University of Iowa?

No.  Documentation review decisions are made independently at different institutions.

If I register with Student Disability Services, will it show up on my academic record?


What if I need a change in my accommodations?

Please submit any accommodation change request in writing to

Do I need to make a new request for accommodations every year?

You need to complete an accommodation form for each class for which you use accommodations for every semester of enrollment. Therefore, you will need to make an appointment at the beginning of each semester with SDS by calling 319-335-1462. 

Is my disability information shared with my professors?

No.  It is your decision whether or not to inform each professor about your accommodations through the accommodation form.  The form is limited to discussing the accommodations for which you are qualified and does not contain information regarding your specific condition.

What is the process for obtaining housing accommodations?

Through the Contracts and Assignments Office of Housing.

Is tutoring provided specifically for students with disabilities?

Tutoring is not an academic accommodation at the college level.  There are tutor referral sources on campus for use by all students.  Tutoring is provided for a fee.  It may also be possible to obtain tutoring at your residence hall.

Is there a cost associated with SDS services?


Should I tell my academic advisor about my disability?

That is your choice.  For example, if reading is difficult for you, it might be helpful to tell your academic advisor about this so they avoid suggesting a number of reading intensive courses during the same semester.

I have a temporary disability.  Can you help me?  What services might be available?

Services for students who are temporarily disabled are available.  The application process is the same.  If, for example, you injured your dominant hand, we may work to find an assigned note-taker for your classes.