Applying for Accommodations
Students requesting services and accommodations through Disability Accommodations & Success Strategies (DASS) must complete and submit an online Accommodation Request Form along with supporting documentation to determine eligibility for services. Carefully read the documentation guidelines applicable to your disability, as you are responsible for submitting documentation that complies with these guidelines. We recommend providing a copy of the guidelines associated with your disability to your qualified professional before the preparation of your documentation. If a student and/or qualified professional wishes to discuss the documentation guidelines, he or she may phone DASS at 214-768-1470.
You must be a student who has committed to attending SMU and paid a deposit before DASS can begin reviewing your file. If you are a new SMU student beginning classes in the Fall Semester, we recommend starting the accommodation process in June, unless you are requesting housing accommodations, in which case we recommend beginning the process as soon as possible.
To establish eligibility for services and accommodations on the basis of a disability, students must follow the following steps. Please read through these steps fully before you begin the process:
Step 1 - Gather what you need:
You must have an SMU ID and access to a PC, Mac, or laptop to apply for accommodations and upload documents. Start by reviewing the documentation guidelines applicable to your disability, then gather or create electronic versions of your supporting medical documentation (e.g., doctor’s summary, psycho-educational report, high school accommodation verification, SAT/ACT accommodation verification). Ensure that the files are available from the device you’re using to make your request.
- Housing-related requests: Please carefully review the information about housing accommodations, including the additional student self-report form and optional provider form.
- Dining-related requests: Please carefully review the information about dining accommodations, including contacting the SMU dietician before making your request through DASS.
- Requests regarding SMU's second language proficiency requirement: Please carefully review the information about course substitutions, including the additional online application for second language substitution request.
Step 2 - Open and complete the Accommodation Request Form:
Using the Accommodation Request Form, you can request both academic and non-academic (e.g., housing/dining) accommodations within the accommodation request. Once you select the type of accommodations you are requesting, additional questions based on your choice may appear. Students, we ask that you complete this form, not parents, guardians, or educational consultants.
Step 3 - Upload supporting documentation:
To upload the documentation, click the Add Item button at the bottom of the form. In the box titled Document Title, provide a title for your document. In the box titled Description, provide any additional information about the document. Select Choose File and then the specific file from your computer. You can upload more than one document to the form. Confirm that your documents have uploaded and that your accommodation request is accurate, then select Submit at the bottom of the form. A message will appear at the top of the form stating your Accommodation Request has been successfully submitted to DASS.
Upload your documents in PDF, if possible. Using PDFs, as opposed to other file types, allows you to upload multiple reports and reports with high page counts. Do not upload a report's pages individually, for example as multiple, individual JPG files. If your diagnostic report has 12 pages, upload these as one PDF document, not 12 separate JPG files.
It is critically important that you upload ALL of the documentation that you have in order for the Coordinator to have a complete file upon review. You want your file to be complete once it comes up in the queue to be reviewed, so please do include ALL information, including a history of accommodation and the most current report from any current provider. For example, if you marked “Yes” to having accommodations in high school and/or on the ACT/SAT or at another college but don’t share the documents regarding those approvals, that will likely delay your request. Also, if you take medication, a letter should always be included from the prescribing physician to help us understand current impact. If you have questions about this, please call our office at 214-768-1470.
You will be unable to make changes directly to the form once it has been submitted. Changes and additional accommodation requests should be communicated to DASS once your DASS Coordinator reaches out to you, or you can email our office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 4 - Log in to your DASS Link account:
Once we receive your request, you’ll also receive an email confirmation and further instructions from DASS Link. DASS Link is the online portal you’ll use to communicate with our office. Logging in to DASS Link is easy! Just go to the DASS Link log-in page (https://shibboleth-smu-accommodate.symplicity.com/sso/). The header says Symplicity. Enter your SMU student ID and password, just like when you log in to my.SMU.
PLEASE NOTE: DASS Link will automatically send messages to the student by way of their SMU email ONLY. Check your SMU email account regularly to make sure you do not miss any important messages from the DASS office.
Step 5 - Make your Intake Appointment with your DASS Coordinator:
After the accommodation review process is complete, your DASS Coordinator will notify you by email. If an accommodation is not approved, your Coordinator will communicate that with you, including what additional information may be needed to move forward. DASS reserves the right to request additional or updated documentation, as needed. If accommodations are approved, you will need to set up an intake meeting with your Coordinator through DASS Link. You must be enrolled in at least one class to have an intake, so if you're an incoming fall semester student, schedule your appointment after you complete Virtual Advising. Once logged in to DASS Link, click Appointment from the menu on the left side of your homepage. When the screen refreshes, click the Request New Appointment button. When the page refreshes, select Intake for the type of appointment, the date and time range that works with your schedule, the location of the appointment (Virtual Appointment), the appropriate coordinator (his/her name will be on your intake request email), and the days of the week that work for your timeframe. Available days and times will appear on the right side of the page. Select the one that’s best for you, and submit the request. You’ll receive a confirmation from your DASS Coordinator finalizing the appointment. Note that the appointment is finalized only when you receive a confirmation from the DASS staff member with whom you plan to meet.
Step 6 - Your first Letters of Accommodation:
During your intake appointment, your DASS Coordinator will go over procedures for how to work with faculty or SMU administrators to implement your authorized accommodations and/or services. If you have academic accommodations (e.g. extended time testing, note taking assistance, etc.), your first accommodation letters will become available for you and your instructors to view on DASS Link. To see your copy of the letter, select the blue Accommodation tab, and on the Accommodations page, click the gray Letters tab.
Step 7 - Communicate with your instructors to implement your accommodations:
You should set up an appointment to discuss the letter with each of your instructors in order to implement accommodations for each class. Failure to communicate with your instructors could lead to a delay in implementing your accommodations.
Additional information about the Accommodation Process:
The accommodation process can be lengthy. Therefore, students are urged to submit the above documentation to DASS as early as possible.
Documentation is reviewed by DASS within two to three weeks of receipt of both the documentation and Student Request for Accommodation Eligibility Form.
On a case-by-case basis, based on the impact of a documented disability on the individual student, DASS staff will verify the disability, determine effective and reasonable accommodations, and recommend accommodations and services. After the review, DASS will notify the student of the outcome of the review.
Caution: Even if students with disabilities shared information about their disability with SMU Admissions, that information is not shared with our office.
Individual Education Plans (IEP's) and 504 plans from high school are generally not considered sufficient documentation at the post-secondary level, but in some cases may contain the test report and scores required.
At the university level, it is the student's responsibility to pay all costs involved in obtaining evaluations and documentation of a disability.
Lastly, please note that accommodations authorized by SMU may not necessarily be the same as those received in high school or at another college or university, and accommodations do NOT apply retroactively.