The Disability Resource Center (DRC) coordinates academic accommodations, which are determined on a case-by-case and highly individualized basis. Your accommodations will vary based on the faculty course design. We encourage students to make an active decision about the use of accommodations at the very start of each semester. Proactive planning and early communication is the key to successful services and course accommodation implementation.

At times, disability accommodations will be provided directly by the faculty. In such cases, the DRC will work with you and our faculty partners to ensure smooth coordination of the accommodations. In the online learning environment, the accommodations are coordinated through the DRC. We work directly with your course instructor and the FIU Online Instructional Designers to try our best to ensure all possible measures for accessibility are taken in any format needed.

Preparing for your Welcome Appointment

The first step in affiliating with the DRC is scheduling a Welcome Appointment that can be done in person, over the phone, or virtually through zoom. You can schedule it by emailing us at or calling us at 305.348.3532.

During this Welcome Appointment, you will meet your Access Consultant and discuss your specific needs, medical history, and diagnosis, and assign the academic accommodations that will help you succeed in your course.

You will need to fill out the following forms during your scheduled Welcome Appointment:

  • DRC Student Intake Form 
  • Test Contract
  • Voter Registration Form*

*As a center that provides services to students with disabilities, the DRC provides you the application to update your records or register to vote in person or with an electronic form.  

Once you complete these forms, please email them to or directly to your Access Consultant via email.
*In-person appointments: If you request an in-person appointment, you can also bring the documentation in person on the day of your appointment.


Each and every semester, on-campus and fully online students have the opportunity to request or decline academic accommodations. Whether it's status-quo or changes are needed, requesting accommodations through the DRC is simple!

  1. Fill out the Notification Of Academic Accommodations
  2. Email your completed form to
  3. This form then authorizes the DRC to notify your professors (and instructional designers) of your accommodations.
  4. Follow up with the DRC to request other accommodations such as testing.

Feel free to contact us by phone 305-348-3532 or email at for further information.

PLEASE NOTE: This form is only for students that have already registered with the DRC to receive accommodations. If you have NOT yet completed your registration with the DRC by attending a Welcome Appointment and submitting your documentation, please contact our office at 305-348-3532.

Testing accommodations

DRC services include the provision of accommodations to students with disabilities for course tests and exams. These services are available to students who qualify for certain types of accommodations. Common examples of test accommodations include extended time, scribe services, limited distraction testing rooms, Braille test conversion, and the use of assistive technology.

Adaptive technology

The Disability Resource Center has a state-of-the-art assistive technology computer facility that houses both PC and Macintosh computers with mainstream and assistive technology. Study tables, scanners, wireless capabilities and printing are also available for student use during hours of operations.

The computer lab is used by students to support their coursework and as a group or individual study space. The lab also serves as a product demonstration and training facility for students, faculty, staff and community members. Students often visit the Center to try out technology before making a purchase to make sure they find a good technological solution.

In addition, the assistive technology resources below are also available for all faculty and staff at FIU. The DRC is here to provide consultation regarding adaptive technology and accessibility at anytime!

Request accessible textbooks

Please understand that not all format types will be available for the requested title (for example, a PDF/EPUB file may need to be substituted with text-to-speech software for an audiobook request). The Disability Resource Center will do our best to fulfill the requested format type for required course materials.

What steps should you take each semester?

  • Determine what REQUIRED TEXTBOOKS are used in your course. Optional and Supplemental textbooks cannot be requested.
  • If purchasing textbooks, try to select electronic formats. The FIU bookstore already offers digital access to various titles. Please take advantage of this option.
  • If electronic materials are not available, request the textbooks from the DRC as soon as possible. The acquisition and conversion processes are extremely time-consuming, please submit the Electronic Textbook Request Form at least 4 weeks before the start of the semester. Make sure to upload proof of purchase for each of the textbooks requested. The DRC recommends purchasing NEW copies of textbooks because some publishers will not honor a used textbook.
  • Allow 7-14 business days for the DRC to contact you with any follow-up questions or status updates. DRC collaborates with publishers and outside agencies to receive the material in the requested format. If the necessary format is not available, then the DRC converts materials in-house which requires a longer processing time. In some cases, textbook acquisition and conversions can take 4-6 weeks.
    • The time frame to convert a textbook to an alternative format can vary based on the number of textbooks requested by each student and what specific textbook is being requested. In addition, the number of pages and amount of content in each textbook can also increase the turnaround time.

Please note that all electronic files will be uploaded to One Drive and shared with you via your FIU email. Books are saved onto one file and not separated into chapters or folders.

  • Panther Book Pack Program

    Although each student is opted-in by default, this program is entirely optional, and you may opt-out up to three days after the add/drop period.

    How to opt-out?

    You may opt-out by visiting, clicking on the Panther Book Pack tile, and then clicking the opt-out/opt-in toggle for the appropriate semester or course.

    Please remember that you will need to opt-out at the start of every semester since you will automatically be enrolled when registering for classes.

    How about my accessible textbook accommodation?

    If you remain enrolled in the program, this will not affect your ability to continue receiving your accessible textbook accommodation.

    The DRC will honor any student book request purchased through the Panther Book Pack program by verifying the Panther Book Pack charge on your student account.

    What if I receive a voucher from DBS?

    Based on recent information from DBS, you will need to opt-out of the program to receive a traditional book voucher to buy the book(s) from the FIU bookstore. However, we recommend confirming your book allowances and eligibility directly with your DBS counselor.


    Suppose you have an accessible textbook accommodation and remain enrolled in the Panther Book Pack program or choose to opt out. In that case, the DRC will continue providing this accommodation to you every semester. The only change in the process is that instead of uploading a receipt showing you've purchased the textbook(s), you will upload the receipt indicating the Panther Book Pack charge on your FIU Account.

Housing Accommodations

The Disability Resource Center, in partnership with Housing and Residential Life, welcomes you to learn more about the process of requesting reasonable accommodations for your on-campus living space. Our goal is to ensure that you are supported throughout your time here at FIU, and your on-campus living experience is one of the ways we are able to do so. We are here to help make your home at FIU one that is specifically designed to serve your needs. For more information on ADA accommodations, examples, and how to ensure your reasonable and appropriate housing accommodations, please follow the link below.

Service Animals and ESAs

Infographic about service animals. Click the following link for an accessible version.

Click here for an Accessible and Downloadable Copy of the DRC Service Animal Infographic


Please follow the process below if you would like to request to have your ESA live in FIU Housing with you:

If you would like to register your Emotional Support Animal (ESA) to accompany you in FIU Housing, you need to complete the process below and submit the requested supporting documentation. 

The DRC requires the following documentation to be submitted when completing the Emotional Support Animal Request Webform found through the following link:

  1. Completed DRC Student Intake Form 
  2. Completed Housing Medical Accommodation Request Form
  3. Letter of Support from Medical/Healthcare Provider (see detailed description in Medical Accommodation Request Form)

Please note that Emotional Support Animals are NOT permitted in Housing until you receive communication from Housing confirming your request has been processed.

Once your initial documentation is approved, the DRC will send the request to Housing and you will be copied in the email and prompted to follow up on next steps directly with Housing staff.

If you have any questions, please contact Stephanie Bello at


  • Campus access

    Emotional support animals are not allowed in classrooms or in public places on campus. ESA's are only allowed in Housing with immediate access to outdoor areas from residence halls. This doesn't include common areas such as group rooms and laundry rooms among others.

    Service Animals must be allowed in any public area/facility where the public is normally allowed to go. I.E. classrooms, library, and dining halls.

    Although vests are optional, service animals must be kept on a leash and under control when the animal is in a public area.

    Documentation of one's disability or service animal training is not required before allowing public access unless on-campus housing is being requested. Students with Emotional Support Animals or Service Animals must register and have the accommodation approved by the DRC & Housing if they wish to reside with their animal on-campus.

  • Definition of service animals

    A Service Animal means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of individuals with physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental conditions. Miniature horses and dogs in training are also covered under ADA and Florida Statute.

  • Definition of emotional support/therapy animals

    "Emotional Support" (ESA), "Comfort" or "Therapy" animals are not considered service animals because they have not been trained to do work or perform a specific task related to a person's disability. Emotional/assistance/support animals are only allowed in the housing when emotional support cannot be met in any other way.

  • Laws protecting service animals

    Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973: Prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in all housing programs and activities that are either conducted by the federal government or receive federal financial assistance.

    Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Amendments Act of 2008: The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs and schools.

    The Fair Housing Act requires housing providers to make reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities.

    Florida Law: Covers puppies or dogs in training.

  • Questions allowed by ADA regulation if it is not obvious what a service animal provides
    1. Is this dog a service animal required because of a disability?
    2. What work or task has the dog been trained to perform?

    You cannot ask about the person's disability or request medical documentation, special identification card, or training documentation for the animal. You also cannot ask for a demonstration of the behavior the animal does.

Disability Related Absences, Extensions & In-Field Experiences

  • Disability-Related Absences

    “Disability-Related Absence” is meant to provide students with chronic conditions the ability to miss class due to disability symptoms without providing medical documentation as an exception to FIU policy as stated in the student handbook. DRC has reviewed the requisite documentation and has confirmed that the student’s disability is chronic in nature and may impact their ability to attend class. In order to protect DRC student confidentiality as well as remove the financial and physical burden of securing a doctor’s note each time a student experiences symptoms, DRC recommends that any absences for the reason of disability be considered “excused”.

    A Notification of Academic Adjustment form must be completed by the student and submitted to DRC prior to activating this and any other DRC academic accommodation.

    1. To activate this accommodation, students must notify the professor and/or appropriate support staff (TA, Program Coordinators, etc.) in writing via email as soon as they are able. Ideally, this communication should take place prior to the start of class. However, DRC recognizes that in some instances, students may be unable to communicate until disability symptoms subside.
    2. Students are encouraged to copy their DRC Access Consultant on all DRC requests and communication so that DRC can provide support as needed.
    3. If documentation is requested by the professor, DRC will review the request to determine whether the absence is covered by the DRC policy. Students may request this review by emailing their DRC Access Consultant directly or emailing
    4. It is understood that if absences become frequent and regular and/or a student’s grade is affected, the student may need to explore options such as a DR Grade Forgiveness, or Student Petition for medical reasons. Please consult with your DRC Access Consultant to discuss the best options.
    5. Regardless of the adaptation of the course attendance policy, the student is required to meet all academic course requirements and to complete all assignments and examinations. It is the student’s responsibility to obtain the material and notes from missed classes. The student will be graded according to the criteria stated in the class syllabus.
  • Extensions on Assignments

    “Extensions on Assignments” is meant to provide students with chronic conditions the ability to submit assignments, without penalty, past the due date stated on the syllabus. DRC has reviewed the requisite documentation and has confirmed that the student’s disability is chronic in nature may impact their ability to submit assignments on time.

    A Notification of Academic Adjustment form must be completed by the student and submitted to DRC prior to activating this and any other DRC academic accommodation.

    1. To activate this accommodation, students are to notify the professor and/or appropriate support staff (TA, Program Coordinators, etc.) in writing via email as soon as they are able. Students are not required to share their diagnosis or submit medical documentation to any entity other than DRC.
    2. Requests should be made no more than 1-2 days in advance. Ideally, this communication should take place prior to the deadline. However, DRC recognizes that in some instances, students may be unable to communicate until disability symptoms subside.
    3. Students are encouraged to copy their DRC Access Consultant on all requests for extensions and related communication so that DRC can provide support as needed.
    4. Requests will be considered on their individual merits and on a case by case basis.
    5. Course deliverables must be submitted before the assignment is to be discussed with the class or before feedback is to be provided to students. Submission of assignments after feedback has been provided constitutes a compromise of academic integrity in many cases which may result in the professor denying the request.
    6. If the request is denied by the professor, DRC will review the request to determine whether academic integrity would be compromised by allowing for the late submission. Students may request this review by emailing their DRC Access Consultant directly or emailing
  • ADA Accommodation requests for Clinical, Practical, Internship, and other In-Field Experiences

    The Disability Resource Center (DRC) staff are available to collaborate with you in achieving your next academic milestone. The DRC can assist in your planning by meeting with you and reviewing which accommodations you are eligible for and if they are available in the various environments you will encounter during this phase of your training. Some examples of majors that have applied knowledge experiences include: OT and Health Science majors, Education, Medicine, Nursing, and Social Work. It is important to note that the accommodations which you were previously qualified and eligible for, and received in the classroom setting, will be reviewed and subject to change due to the training and preparation requirements of the applied knowledge educational environment. Please note you will still be able to use your accommodations in any non-applied knowledge experiences as you typically would during this phase of your education.

    Timeline & Recommendations:

    The first step in determining which accommodations you qualify for is making an appointment with your DRC Access Consultant the semester before you start the site selection process with your academic department. During this phase, we begin creating a working plan for identifying site placement procedures and the requisite documentation for ADA accommodations. Recognizing sites vary in their location, setting, and capacity to provide different types of accommodations, this is a time-sensitive process that must happen PRIOR to site-selection decisions.

    Meeting with the DRC:

    Please call 305-348-3532 to schedule an appointment with a DRC Access Consultant.

    We will review any pertinent supporting medical documentation from a licensed health care provider, and if needed, discuss your registration with the DRC and advise you on securing a workplace accommodations letter.

    If you are already registered with the DRC we will work to expedite the process to the next step in which you will be requesting a letter from a licensed healthcare provider demonstrating your eligibility for ADA workplace accommodations and what they are. Some examples of workplace accommodations include, but are not limited to driving restrictions, carrying restrictions, rest breaks, use of specific equipment (I.e. specific clothing, technology, or medical equipment), and more.

    Once you have secured this letter, schedule an appointment with your DRC Access Consultant to discuss your accommodations, DRC’s recommendations and begin the coordination of accommodations and their implementation with your academic department.

    Please remember accommodations are not retroactive. We highly recommend engaging in this process as soon as possible, preferably before the site selection process begins with your academic department, to ensure accommodations will be available at the site you intend to complete your field experience. We look forward to supporting your academic success!

CAT Labs

The DRC offers quiet Computer Assistive Technology Labs (CAT Labs) for all DRC-registered students on both the MMC and BBC campuses.

There are four CAT Labs at MMC and one large CAT Lab at BBC that are available to use during the library's business hours.

The CAT Labs contain accessible furniture, access to Windows computers with Internet, Microsoft Office, Adobe Reader, and assistive technologies such as JAWS and a CCTV.

Please keep in mind that specialty departmental software like Adobe InDesign and SPSS is not available.

Study Abroad

If you are planning to enroll in study abroad program and will need accommodation in your travels, contact your assigned Access Consultant.

ASL and CARTE Services

The provision of sensory impairment accommodations such as CARTE services and ASL Services may require additional coordination and technology-related setup, which may cause delays in implementing these during the semester. Additionally, please note that a shortage of in-person ASL interpreters is affecting the provision of these accommodations in the classroom. Although FIU’s DRC is working diligently to ensure you have full access to your course materials, please note that there may be some delays in this process and some alternative modalities implemented when appropriate.