Definitions

These terms are essential vocabulary for the CSD and will be helpful for understanding our mandate, who we serve and how services and accommodations are determined.

Disability

The SFU Access Policy for Students with Disabilities defines who is eligible to receive services. According to this policy, a student with a disability is a person who:

  • Has been diagnosed by an appropriate professional as having: a mental health impairment; physical impairment; neurological impairment; learning disorder; or sensory impairment, any/all of which may be permanent or temporary and is likely to continue and may significantly interfere with educational pursuits; AND
  • Experiences functional restrictions or limitations in their ability to perform the range of life's activities; AND
  • May experience attitudinal and/or environmental barriers that hamper their full and self-directed participation in life.

The impairments associated with the diagnosed disability must result in a significant restriction or limitation in the student’s ability to access the educational experience.  

Reasonable Academic Accommodation

An academic accommodation is a modification or extension of University resources, or of teaching or evaluation procedures, which mitigates the effect of a student's disability on learning. Simon Fraser University has a duty to provide reasonable accommodations to the known limitations of an otherwise qualified student who has a documented disability. Accommodations may be made by providing alternative ways for the student to meet requirements or by adapting the instructional delivery system and/or assessment procedures (for example, through visual language interpreters, note takers, alternate examination formats, adaptive equipment). These accommodations should enable the student to demonstrate his or her knowledge and skill without diluting curriculum or credentials, or detracting from the responsibility of the student to achieve individual results consistent with course/program requirements and objectives.

All reasonable accommodations provided by Simon Fraser University must:

  • Be based on documented individual disability needs;
  • Allow the most integrated experience possible;
  • Not compromise the essential requirements of a course/program for all
  • students; and
  • Not pose a threat to personal or public safety