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Access and Disability Resources

Additional Time for Assignments

Each term the Disability Services office receives an email or phone(s) call from an instructor asking for clarification on one specific accommodation: Additional Time for Assignments. Extended Time for Assignments can be a difficult accommodation to implement, especially considering the difference in structure of classes: calculus based physics vs. theater, for example.

When this accommodation is granted, we explain to the student that it is important to realize that having more time can be as much of a curse as a blessing. The 11 week term at RCC cannot be extended. Additionally, it may only be a reasonable accommodation if having additional time for assignments enables the student to maintain the continuity of the class. Students in calculus-based physics must keep up, or they will be left behind.

There are generally two categories of students who qualify for the Additional Time for Assignments Accommodation:

  • Students who have a general understanding of how much time they may need to complete an assignment. (We recognize that this is somewhat of an abstraction as assignments vary considerably from course to course.) In this case, it is the student’s responsibility to approach the instructor with the Additional Time for Assignments Student Instructor Guide to discuss reasonable timelines for the provision of additional time for each assignment. Our suggestion to students is keep it simple: Ask for an assignment due on Monday to be turned in on Wednesday with no penalty.
  • Students who have a disability that is episodic in nature, such as epilepsy, Crohn’s, and chronic migraines, do not know when they will be impacted by their disability during a term. Our suggestion for these students is to communicate with their instructor at the beginning of the term to convey the possibility of needing extra time due to a disability related absence. Communication with the instructor and being in good standing in the class is the key!


The intent of the Additional Time for Accommodations measure is to ensure that students with a qualifying disability are allowed a reasonable amount of time necessary to complete course work necessary for successful completion of their certificate or degree.