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Learning Disabilities or Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)

Students living with a visible or hidden disability have special needs as a result of their conditions. Students who have documentation of a physical, learning, or psychiatric disability are eligible to receive accommodations from the University Accessibility Center.

Students with learning disabilities may have had long term difficulty in reading, writing, spelling, and/or mathematical concepts. Their verbal skills may far exceed their reading, writing, or spelling skills. Students with a learning disability tend to process information slowly and need some “think time” to respond to a question, retrieve information, or solve a problem. They can have difficulty recalling and integrating information presented orally.

In an academic setting, students with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) may have difficulty sustaining attention and following through on instructions or completing a task; tend to lose things easily; frequently forget appointments; often interrupt or intrude on others; blurt out answers before questions have been completed; appear restless; seem not to listen when spoken to directly; and tend to be active and creative.

In cases of learning disorders, ADHD, and/or psychiatric disabilities, students may not be aware that there are treatments and accommodations available for the symptoms that are interfering with their academic progress. When you suspect a student may have a disability:


  1. Speak to the student in private about your concerns.
  2. Refer the student to the University Accessibility Center (UAC; 801.422.2767).
  3. Acknowledge the difficulties the student is experiencing.
  4. Be sensitive that low self-esteem may be associated with the disability.
  5. Be aware that the UAC may need to contact the faculty member and/or T. A. to follow up on accommodations.
  6. Be aware that all disabilities need medical documentation before the student is eligible for accommodations through the UAC.


  1. Assume the student knows s/he may qualify for accommodations.
  2. Assume the student wants to receive accommodations from the UAC.
  3. Pressure the student to acknowledge his/her disability.
  4. Speak to the student in a derogatory manner.