Policies & Procedures

Accessing Accommodations

  • New students must first register with LSS in order to receive accommodations. To register, log into ClockWork for Students and select the Online Intake link. To register, students must submit current documentation of their disability and can submit this in ClockWork when completing the Online Intake. To finish the registration process, students will need to meet with an LSS staff member to go over their documentation and accommodation needs.
  • Once you are registered with LSS and approved for accommodations, in order to receive your accommodations you will need to log into ClockWork for Students to complete a Request for Accommodations to send a copy of your accommodations letter to the professors of the courses in which you are enrolled. Students must complete this process each semester in order to receive accommodations. 
  • Reasonable academic accommodations are based on the current impact of the disability on academic performance; therefore it is in the student’s best interest to provide current and complete documentation. If LSS determines that the documentation is inadequate in scope or content, or does not address the student’s current level of functioning and need for accommodation, or that the evaluator does not have the appropriate qualifications, reevaluation may be required.
  • Reasonable academic accommodations in the postsecondary environment may differ from those available in the secondary school.  Learning Support Services will make the final determination for providing appropriate academic accommodations.
  • Depending on the nature of the disability and the accommodations requested, the amount of advance notice provided may impact the University’s ability to provide accommodations. Delays in presenting requests or providing documentation will affect promptness in arranging accommodations.
  • Documentation remains locked in the LSS Office at all times. It does not become part of your academic file. It is only viewed by the designated LSS Staff.


LSS is very sensitive to and respectful of a student’s right to privacy and confidentiality. The university recognizes that student disability records contain confidential information and are to be treated as such. Therefore, documentation of a student’s disability is maintained in a confidential file in LSS. Information related to a disability may be disclosed only with the permission of the student or as permitted by the university’s student records policy and federal law.

Notice of Accommodation to Faculty

  • Each semester students must complete a Request for Accommodations in ClockWork in order to receive accommodations for that term. 
  • By completing this request in ClockWork. you will be able to send a copy of your accommodations letter to the professors of the courses in which you are enrolled. The letters identify the student as registered with LSS with appropriate documentation. The student’s disability is not identified to the faculty member. A statement is included as follows: “Based on the documentation the following accommodations would be appropriate…” This would be followed by a list of suggested classroom accommodations. Confidentiality is emphasized. 
  • Although students are providing their accommodation letters to their professors electronically, we recommend that professors and students find time to meet privately and discuss specific accommodations relative to course procedures and expectations. 
  • Each letter sent to professors includes the following statement: "Professors and students are expected to discuss the accommodations to make sure all parties are clear on what is needed. LSS staff are available to answer any questions or concerns." This is essential to establish communication with professors at the start of the semester. 
  • Arrangements need to be made in advance for all accommodations, but especially for extended-time testing. Whenever a test is announced, the student must contact the professor to determine arrangements for extended time. LSS provides test proctoring services when professors are unable to provide all required testing accommodations for a student. 
  • Students must book their quizzes, tests, and final exams at least 3 business days in advance through ClockWork to take their test with LSS.With few exceptions, students are expected to take a test on the assigned date. The accommodation of extended test time does not mean extended preparation time.
  • Faculty members cannot retroactively provide academic accommodations for course requirements for students who have not previously presented a letter from the Learning Support Office supporting such requests.

Suggestions for Talking with your Professors

General Guidelines

  • Define the goal of the interaction with the professor. What outcomes do you wish to have from the meeting? Do you want to get/give information, get/give advice, or gain/give understanding? A clear goal helps you prepare your approach and keeps you on task for the meeting.
  • Every interaction with your professors should leave them with a favorable impression of your motivation, preparation, and overall interest in learning, as well as your interest in the specific course content.
  • Make an appointment. Each professor will give you a course syllabus which will list office hours, office location, phone number and email address.
  • Be on time. If unavoidably late, call or email your professor.
  • Introduce yourself. Identify which class and section you are in, and any other information that will help identify your connection.
  • Be calm and courteous. Address professors by their title and surname (Dr. Smith). If uncertain, address them as Dr. or Professor, unless specifically invited to do otherwise.
  • Be prepared. Bring along any material you wish to discuss or examples of problems you want the professor to review, etc.
  • Respect the professor’s time. End your meeting at the agreed-upon time, or ask permission to go a bit longer, such as, “Do you have 10 more minutes or should I reschedule?"
  • All of your professors will have posted office hours. Villanova professors do encourage their students to make full use of the office hours. They are available to help you with your course work and questions so take full advantage of this one-on-one opportunity.

Discussing your Disability with your Professors

  • You will need to meet with each of your professors as early as possible in the semester.
  • Discuss the testing accommodations that you need. If your accommodation is for extended test time, you will need to discuss how to handle this extra time for each of your exams. Potential conflicts exist if you or the professor has a class immediately following a test. This is where you will negotiate with the professor for an earlier start or a different time entirely. Potential solutions may be starting ahead of time in the professor’s office, taking the exam back to the office after class, taking it in a nearby conference room or office, or arranging to have it proctored with LSS.
  • Describe any other accommodations you may need. You do not need to identify your disability; however, explaining how you learn best and how you can best be assessed will be helpful.
  • Ask for any advice they might offer on learning the material, studying for exams, or otherwise performing well in the class. Do they post their notes on the Web? Are practice problems on their website? Do they conduct review sessions before exams? Will they review a rough draft for any writing assignments?
  • It is appropriate to share with them what works for you (or doesn’t help you) in the course and to compliment them on the techniques that you find aid your learning, such as: the outlines of your notes are very helpful in following the lecture or when you are writing on the board while explaining a problem, I am unable to follow you (or hear you)…

Arranging for the Accommodation of Notetaking

If you qualify for note-taking support, this should be directly stated in your accommodation letter. There are a few different notetaking options that you can choose to use if your professor does not already provide sufficient notetaking assistance. We will review those options here and discuss the procedure for setting them up.

STEP #1 To use any notetaking accommodations, you will first need to complete a Request for Accommodations in ClockWork.

STEP #2 Review the technology options below and decide which type of Notetaking Accommodation you want to use. You can choose from the following types of technology that allow you to create an audio recording of the lecture. With this technology, you will be able to review and enhance your notes.

Description of Notetaking Technology:

OneNote: One Note is a digital notebook that helps you keep all your notes organized and can be used to record audio. This software is available for free to all Villanova students through Office 365. To access OneNote (and other Office 365 features) go to: http://office.villanova.edu

You can sign in with your Villanova UserID (myNova) and password. Explore UNIT’s OneNote resource page and watch this video to learn more about how to use OneNote: OneNote Video.

AudioNote: AudioNote enables you to type notes that are linked to an audio recording. Your notes will be time-stamped, allowing you to playback the recording from that point in the lecture so you can fill in any missing notes. You can also upload pictures and lecture slides to enhance your notes. You can download AudioNote to your computer, smart phone, or tablet. Check out this video that describes several features of AudioNote: AudioNote Video

Livescribe Smart Pens: Livescribe Smart Pens are pens that record audio while you take notes. That audio is time-stamped to your notes (similarly to AudioNote) allowing you to seamlessly review notes, fill in gaps, and create study guides without missing a word. Check out this video about how to use the Livescribe Smart Pens: Smart Pens Video

STEP #3 Talk to LSS about getting access to AudioNote or Livescribe Smart Pens.

STEP #4 If you feel that the above technology does not address your notetaking needs, LSS can connect you with a peer notetaking assistant who will provide you with a copy of notes for each class. Please reach out to LSS to set up this accommodation.

Peer Notetaking Assistants: The peer notetaking assistant will be asked to upload notes for the class to a GoogleDrive folder that you will be able to access. We will do our best to identify an appropriate note taker as soon as possible, but keep in mind that the hiring process often takes a few weeks. Students requesting note takers are responsible for retrieving the notes in a timely manner and keeping LSS updated regarding any questions or concerns. If you would like to request a Peer Notetaking Assistant for your classes, please complete this form:

* Notetaking request form.docx
Peer Notetaking Assistants Request Form


Please direct note-taking request questions to Emily Harris or learning.support.services@villanova.edu

Arranging for Accommodations for Studying Abroad or at another University

Many students will participate in pre-approved summer courses at another university as well as study abroad programs for a semester, a summer, or a year. In both cases, it is of the utmost importance that students make contact with the program director for the planned program.

For a summer course at another university, students need to find out if a letter from LSS verifying the accommodations received at Villanova will be sufficient or if they need to send a full copy of their disability documentation.  LSS can provide this to the summer university with students' written permission.

For a study abroad program, the process begins with accessing the Office of Education Abroad to explore the many program offerings.  It is important to learn more about the provision of accommodations in the various countries and begin to identify potential access barriers and how they can be proactively addressed.  Laws similar to the U.S. may or may not exist in the countries being considered.  For example, some medications for ADHD that are commonly used in the United States are illegal in other countries.  However, once a program is chosen, students must communicate with the Program Director to find out what documentation is needed.  This may be a Villanova professor who is participating in the program, or it may be an on-site director at the overseas university.  Share this information with LSS and we will provide, with written permission, a letter to verify the accommodations received at Villanova or if requested, a copy of the documentation on file.

Grievance Procedures

It is the policy of Villanova University not to discriminate on the basis of disability. Villanova has adopted this internal Grievance Procedure to provide prompt and equitable resolution of complaints alleging any action prohibited by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (ADA). Section 504 and the ADA prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability and provide that no qualified individual with a disability shall, by reason of such disability, be excluded from participation in or be denied the benefits of the services, programs, or activities at Villanova. Ellen Krutz, Affirmative Action Officer, has been designated as the Section 504 Coordinator for Villanova University. The Section 504 Coordinator manages the efforts of Villanova to comply with Section 504 and the ADA.

Any person who believes she or he has been subjected to discrimination on the basis of disability may file a grievance under this procedure. Issues that may be the subject of a grievance include, but are not limited to, a denial of a requested accommodation, the inadequacy of an accommodation, the inaccessibility of a program or activity due to disability, and discrimination or harassment based on a disability.

Please see Villanova's Section 504 Grievance Procedure for the full policy.