Complaint Procedure for Students with Disabilities

Southern Methodist University (“SMU”) is committed to providing equal educational opportunities for qualified students with disabilities.  Accordingly, the University complies with federal and state laws and regulations, including the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (the “ADA”), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (“Section 504”), and does not discriminate on the basis of disability in the administration of its education-related programs and activities. 

Any SMU student who believes that he or she has been subjected to discrimination on the basis of disability, including assertions of an erroneous adverse eligibility determination, of the denial of access to services or accommodations required by law, or of the failure of a faculty or staff member to properly implement the approved academic adjustments or auxiliary aids in an approved accommodation plan, has the right to seek a review of such concerns.  Students are strongly encouraged to seek resolution of the complaint first with the Disability Accommodations & Success Strategies office (“DASS”), but they can also file a complaint with the Office of Institutional Access and Equity (“IAE”) at any time under University Policy, titled Needs of Persons with Disabilities.

  1. Students should contact DASS to discuss their concerns about the alleged discrimination.  A student has the responsibility of identifying the nature of his or her complaint for DASS and of explaining why he or she believes the determination made by DASS was erroneous in nature or how he or she has been discriminated against.  DASS has the responsibility to consider the student’s request and respond to the student’s concerns in a timely manner.  DASS must inform the student in writing of any changes based on the discussion.  It is not uncommon for DASS to offer alternative accommodations in lieu of the requested accommodation if DASS believes the alternative provides a better solution based on the interaction of the student’s disability and the SMU environment.  With regard to a denial of accommodations, DASS must explain the reasoning behind the denial but is not required to change an original denial of accommodation based on the complaint.     

  2. If the student remains dissatisfied with DASS’s decision or if he or she wants to file a complaint with IAE at any time, he or she may file a complaint under University Policy, titled Needs of Persons with Disabilities.     

Retaliation is a separate violation of SMU policy.  University policy prohibits any member of the University community—staff, members of the faculty, students or visitors participating in the educational activities or programs of the University—from retaliating in any way against a person because that person has raised allegations of discrimination.  It is a violation of University policy to retaliate against any person who has exercised the right to file a complaint, has used any of the processes provided by SMU, has cooperated with an investigation, or has testified or otherwise offered evidence connected to a complaint of discrimination. A complaint’s actual or perceived lack of merit does not excuse retaliatory conduct.  Any person who observes retaliation should promptly notify the ADA/504 Coordinator in IAE.






Disability Accommodations & Success Strategies (DASS)

Loyd Center, Suite 202

5800 Ownby Drive

Dallas TX 75275




Office of Institutional Access and Equity

204 Perkins Administration Building

6425 Boaz Lane

Dallas TX 75205