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UCLA Center for Accessible Education

What is the Americans with Disabilities Act?

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal civil rights law that protects individuals from discrimination based on disability. Along with Section 504 of the federal Rehabilitation Act, the ADA promotes equal access and participation in the University’s programs and services. These laws provide that students must have an equal opportunity to obtain the same educational outcomes and level of achievement as a students without disabilities. Accordingly, the University may neither deny students with disabilities any benefit or service, nor offer any benefit or service that is not as effective as those offered to students without disabilities. Failure to comply with federal disability laws may subject both the University and individual faculty members/instructors to lawsuits and significant monetary penalties.

Reasonable Accommodations

A reasonable accommodation is a modification or adjustment to a course, program, service, job, activity, or facility that enables a student with a disability to have an equal opportunity to enjoy the benefits, opportunities, and privileges that are available to all students (with or without disabilities) while simultaneously not reducing or eliminating curriculum standards. Reasonable accommodations do not fundamentally alter or eliminate essential course requirements, and any accommodation that would do so is considered unreasonable and would not be recommended nor approved.

Privacy Laws and Confidentiality

All disability-related information including documentation, accommodation letters, correspondence, and consultations are considered confidential and will be managed in accordance with The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) regulations. Please read this carefully, as there are instances that may necessitate student information being released without consent. This includes electronic, paper, verbal, and any other types of communication.

Faculty, Teaching Assistants (TA), and Staff Accommodations

Employees or applicants in need of assistance or accommodations should notify their supervisor or the Insurance and Risk Management (IRM) office. It is the responsibility of the employee with a disability to self-identify and inform the University that an accommodation is requested.