In reaching its determinations about appropriate accommodations, DSS considers factors such as the documentation from professionals specializing in the area of the student’s diagnosed disability, the student’s functional limitations, and the student’s input and accommodation history in regard to particular needs and limitations.  DSS works with the student and relevant faculty and staff through an interactive process designed to achieve an accommodation that meets the needs of all parties.

Course materials may be converted into various formats in order to provide equal access to one’s educational materials. Example of common formats include: accessible PDF, DAISY, tagged Microsoft Word, Braille, or tactile graphics.

Eligibility Requirements

Services are available to students who have documentation of disabilities with functional limitations which impact a student’s ability to access printed material.

Requesting Service

Student may submit textbook information and proof-of-purchase using the online Alternate Media Request Form.

  1. Students must be currently registered with Disability Services for Students (DSS) in order to request alternate media services.
  2. Eligibility for alternate media service is determined by the DSS staff and is based upon the professional documentation provided by the student who has "a disability that prevents him/her from using standard instructional materials." This professional documentation is typically submitted by the student upon their initial registration with DSS.
  3. Alternate media services must be requested each semester as needed.
  4. Students must be currently enrolled and/or finishing an incomplete in the course for which they are requesting alternate media services.
  5. Students requesting textbooks in alternate media must own the material or the material has been purchased on the student’s behalf.
  6. Once a request is approved, the DSS staff’s recommendation with student preference will be used to determine the specific alternate media format.
  7. If DSS is converting textbooks and materials to alternate media, those textbooks and materials will be cut for scanning purposes and will be re-bound before being returned to the student. The SSU Bookstore has agreed to purchase these re-bound textbooks back.
  8. Alternate media requests must be submitted as soon as the student learns of his/her need. Late requests will be honored in the order that they are received and may cause a delay in receiving the alternate media materials.
  9. Regarding class handouts, students must initially ask the professor to provide the handouts (including syllabi) on disk, by email, or another electronic format, if available.
  10. The alternate media material is copyrighted. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any other format. Students will be provided with one alternate media copy for each material required for academic use. Any further reproduction or distribution is considered a copyright infringement. Misuse of this material will result in disciplinary action.
  11. Alternate media is provided for Sonoma State University curriculum support only. Alternate media will not be provided for personal use.
  12. Questions regarding alternate media should be addressed directly to the DSS staff.

DSS reserves the right to discontinue service if any of the aforementioned items are violated or abused. Inappropriate conduct of student is subject to discipline and legal actions.

Common examples of assistive technology available to qualified DSS students include (1) close caption televisions (CCTVs) that magnify materials for students with low-vision, (2) speech recognition computer software for students who have difficulty using a standard keyboard, (3) personal amplification devices for students who are hard-of-hearing, (4) screen reader computer software for students who are blind, (5) and reading/writing/learning computer software for students with learning disabilities.

Special Equipment

Digital recorders and assistive listening devices are available for check out related to one’s accommodation needs. Please discuss with your DSS advisor if appropriate.

Computer stations equipped with adaptive software are available at:

  • AsTECH Lab, (Schulz 1058C – inside 24-hour lab)
  • University Library first floor - In front of the Writing Center - Schulz 1103 (two workstations)
  • University Library second floor - In Multimedia area (two workstations)
  • University Library third floor - Schulz 3046 (two workstations)

For further inquiries, please contact Jack Nguyen, Alternate Media/Assistive Technology Specialist at (707) 664-4361

Sonoma State University encourages students with food allergies and special dietary requirements to be self-advocates in managing their dietary conditions.  By registering with Disability Services for Students (DSS), the student and DSS can identify appropriate campus referrals for notification in order to provide assistance with dietary management. 

Students who use Sonoma State University dining venues and are requesting dietary accommodations or modifications related to their food allergies or special dietary requirements will be referred to the Director of Dining Services who will assist in addressing the individual student’s dietary concerns and restrictions.

Disability Management Services are available for students to meet individually with an advisor to discuss disability related issues, set up accommodations, and obtain academic advising specifically designed to address the needs of students with disabilities.

For specific questions related to one’s major, it is recommended that students meet with their major advisor.

Requesting Services

Students who are registered with the DSS office may set up an advising appointment by calling the office at 707-664-2677 or 707-664-2958 (TTY).

Completed and submitted online by student to request for disability-related adaptive furniture in classrooms. Student may also download the printer-friendly version if needed.

Download printable PDF

If a student anticipates or believes that they will need special housing accommodations based on disability, then he or she must complete the following steps in order to determine eligibility. The Disability Services for Students office (DSS) cannot guarantee that a decision will be made in time prior to housing assignments made by SSU Housing Services; therefore, it is recommended that students register with the DSS as early as possible.

Requests for housing accommodations based on disability-related needs are initiated by:

All requested information should be submitted to the Disability Services for Students (DSS) office.

A selection of informative instructional videos on some of the most common assistive technology tools utilized by students, staff and faculty at Sonoma State University. We made sure that these short and easy-to-follow videos have subtitle or closed caption embeded. This section will be updated regularly as the new and useful contents become available.

DSS provides sign language interpreters, real-time captioning, and/or other communication accommodations to deaf and hard-of-hearing students for classes and academically-related activities. Please see Interpreting and/or Real-time Captioning Services Guidelines for eligibility requirements and the process for requesting services.

Download Interpreting and/or Real-time Captioning Services Guidelines

Note-taking assistance may be provided to qualified students who are registered with the Disability Services for Students office.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Must be a SSU student and currently enrolled with the Disability Services for Students office.
  • Have specific documentation of a disability where the functional limitations affect one’s ability to take notes in the classroom
  • Students with hearing and visual impairments, as well those with cognitive impairments related to processing speed, attentiveness, auditory processing, or dysgraphia, may also be eligible for note-taking assistance.

Eligible students must receive academic advising and turn in the completed “DSS Priority Registration Academic Advising” form to DSS (Salazar 1049) by the specified date each semester in order to receive priority registration.

BEFORE you schedule a WEPT exam date with the Writing Center, you must complete the following steps:

  • Registered DSS students can request to meet with a DSS advisor or submit an online request for accommodations for the WEPT: http://www.sonoma.edu/dss/web_forms/academic_accommodation_request.html
  • Pay for the WEPT exam online through the Seawolf Online Payment Site or in person at Seawolf Service Center in the semester in which you are going to attempt the WEPT.

ONCE DSS has confirmed with you that your accommodations have been authorized:

  • Take your WEPT receipt of payment to the SSU Writing Center to schedule the time and location of your accommodated exam.
  • Communicate to the Writing Center staff that you are requesting a WEPT with accommodations.

Through appropriate DSS authorization, students with documented disabilities may obtain test accommodations through the DSS office.  This may include extended test time, exams converted into alternative formats, use of assistive technology or a reduced distraction environment.


  • Must be a SSU student and currently enrolled with the Disability Services for Students office.
  • Have specific documentation of a disability-related functional limitation indicating the need for test-taking accommodations
  • Obtain the DSS Academic Accommodation Authorization form (each semester)

Requesting Services

  • Meet with a DSS Advisor at the beginning of each semester to obtain the DSS Academic Accommodation Authorization form (one for each class)
  • Provide the DSS Academic Accommodation Authorization form to each faculty member where accommodations are being requested
  • Schedule all exams, including finals, with the DSS office as soon as the test dates become available
  • Confirm your testing appointment with your instructor one week prior to the exam to ensure that the instructor provides the DSS office with the exam before the testing appointment

Download Testing Accommodation Guidelines