"Accommodations don't make things easier, just possible; in the same way eyeglasses do not improve the strength of the eyes, they just make it possible for the individual to see better. Accommodations are interventions that allow the learner to indicate what they know. Without the accommodations, the learner may not be able to overcome certain barriers." (Samuels, M. 1992 - Asking the Right Questions. The Learning Centre. Calgary)

The purpose of such academic accommodations is to adjust for the effect of the student's disability, not to dilute academic requirements. The evaluation and assigning of grades should have the same standards for all students, including students with disabilities. Accommodations are designed to lessen the effects of the disability and are required to provide fair and accurate testing to measure knowledge or expertise in the subject.

All courses have essential knowledge and skills which must be mastered and evaluated. If a disability prevents a student from demonstrating knowledge and mastery, an alternative, instructional or evaluative strategy may be developed, or an accommodation may be arranged that is not required of other students.

Please contact Lynne Branham at (309) 677-4356 or with additional questions.

Note-Taker Policy and FAQ

How to request a note-taker:

If you are a student registered with the Center for Learning Assistance (CLA) at Bradley University who would like to request a note-taker as an accommodation in one or more classes, please follow the steps below:

  1. Ensure that "note-taker" is listed as an approved accommodation.  If it is not, and you feel that you may qualify for the service please email the Director, Lynne Branham, at and request an appointment.  
  2. Attend at least two (2) class sessions of each course in which you are considering requesting a note-taker.  If your class only meets once each week, please attend one (1) class session before requesting a note-taker from the CLA.  


  1. It is the responsibility of the student to submit all requests in a timely manner.  Note-takers are expected to provide notes from the date the original request is made until the end of the term.  Like all other accommodations, notes are not provided retroactively.  
  2. Students are encouraged to use other similar accommodations, like receiving PowerPoints in advance of class and recording class lectures, in conjunction with receiving a copy of notes from a note-taker.
  3. Students who receive a note-taker as an accommodation are expected to use the additional notes in conjunction with their own.  All students are still responsible for taking notes during class.  
  4. It is the student's responsibility to inform CLA immediately if their notes are inaccurate, not timely, or if they are no longer needed.  
  5. Attend class regularly.  Note takers are directed to provide notes for the days that the student is in class.  Note-takers are not required to provide notes when a student is absent.  
  6. Have a back up plan.  Note-takers may occasionally miss a class.  Network with the other students in your class is that you are comfortable asking them for a copy of their notes if/when your note-taker is absent.  


Once the request is confirmed, the CLA takes the following steps to assist in finding a note-taker for the student:

  1. An e-mail is sent to select students in the class requesting a volunteer to provide copies of their notes for a peer in the class.  The CLA student receiving the notes is not named in the email.  Any interested student volunteers are required to complete a brief training seminar and submit an application to CLA.  
  2. After two (2) business days, if no students have applied, a second email is sent.  
  3. Generally, a volunteer is found during this email process however if not, the CLA will reach out to the professor and request that they assist in finding a note taker.  


  • I qualify to have "note-taker."  What do I need to do to request this service? Contact Lynne Branham for an appointment.
  • I do not qualify to have a "note-taker," but think I may qualify for this as an accommodation, what should I do?  Please email Lynne Branham, Director of the CLA, at and request an appointment to discuss your options.  
  • Is there a way for me to receive notes anonymously?  Please email Lynne Branham, Director of the CLA, at  It is in your best interest to know your note-taker for collection of notes, in the event you or the note-taker must miss class or for other note related questions.  Developing a working relationship with your note-taker helps everyone involved.  
  • My note-taker is not dropping off notes on time, who should I contact to report this?  You must contact the CLA immediately to report the problem.  
  • I do not think the notes I am receiving from my note-taker are adequate, who should I contact to report my concern?  If you feel there is a concern, contact the CLA right away to set up an appointment to show a copy of the notes you receive and share suggestions for changes.  
  • I was told the notes would be emailed to me but have not received an email yet.  What should I do? Check your spam email to see if the email with notes is there first.  If the email is not in spam, contact the CLA.  
  • The CLA has given me the name and e-mail address of my note-taker so that I can contact him/her to set-up note delivery.  What should I say in my email to the note-taker?  In your email it may be helpful to provide the following information: your full name, your email address (if notes delivered via email), a meeting location (if the notes will be dropped off in person).  You are not required to, and should not, give any personal or disability information.  Be professional and thank the volunteer for the assistance.  

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Alternative Textbooks and FAQ

Before submitting a textbook request with the CLA

The CLA converts course materials for students with print disabilities into alternative textbook format or ATF.  In order for students to obtain ATF, they must be registered with the CLA and have approval of ATF as a reasonable accommodation.  Students who utilize ATF typically use assistive technology as a means of reading their course materials.

Have I met with the CLA Director?

Lynne Branham, Interim Director, is available to assist students with their ATF requests and assistive technologies.  All students who are approved for ATF should communicate with her their requests and any questions they may have.  Students who qualify for ATF will be asked to read and sign an Alternative Textbook Format Agreement available on the Sakai website under resources.  

Have I compiled my Course Materials list?

For every student requesting ATF, they must provide the CLA with a complete list of their course materials that will be converted into ATF.  In some cases it may be difficult to find out what materials are required for your course.  You should start with the bookstore website and print off the textbook information for each of your classes.  This will provide the ISBN, edition, publisher and other needed information you are required to submit when requesting an ATF.  

Do I need to purchase my textbooks or will the CLA provide all required materials?

Yes, you must purchase your textbooks before the CLA will provide an ATF.  Due to copyright laws, proof of purchase must be provided to the CLA prior to giving a student the ATF.  You can bring your receipt to the CLA to be copied or scan or email a copy of the receipt for proof of purchase to Lynne Branham, Interim Director.  

Have I checked to see if those materials already exist in an accessible format?  

There are many resources available to you which may already have your books available in an accessible format.  You may want to check the Bradley Bookstore website or other outlets such as Amazon or Chegg.

Can I convert Sakai, library reserve reading, or class hand-outs?  

Yes.  To do so, you must specifically request the additional materials (i.e. Sakai, library reserve, class handouts) to be provided in an alternate format.  Speak with your professor at the beginning of the semester about your accommodation and need for accessible materials.  Many students are able to work directly with their Sakai materials and do not require the CLA to process these.  If the instructor changes or adds more materials, it is your responsibility to communicate these changes to CLA.  Remember, all requests must be made in a reasonable time frame.  There will probably be 100 or more other vacationers wanting the same thing you are!   If material is posted on Sakai or on reserve that is not accessible, contact Lynne Branham immediately

I have the ATF next but now what do I do with it?  

There are many free sources that will read electronic materials.  The University has a site license for Kurzweil 3000 that is free to all students.  Please email Lynne Branham and she will create your account for you to download the program. You will also see and meet several people.    

Free text-to-audio programs include:

Kurzweil 3000 - contact Lynne Branham for free account.  Intro to Kurzweil Video

Voiceover (available on Macs)

Natural Reader: 

Adobe Reader:


Window-Eyes: (formerly a paid for Screen Readerk, now free)

PowerTalk: (Automatic Speech for Power Point presentation )

Once the request has been fully completed, you will be able to access your course reading materials within the Universal Library in Kurzweil3000 and Firefly, the web version of Kurzweil3000, or you can pick up the course reading materials from the CLA.  

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Service Animals (ADA Definition)

Any guide or signal dog individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability, and the work is directly related to the individual's disability.  An animal fitting this description is considered a service animal under the ADA regardless of whether the animal is trained under a certified society or is licensed by stated or local government.  

The ADA stipulates that service animals must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered, unless these devices interfere with the service animal's work or the individual's disability prevents using these devices.  In that case, the individual must maintain control of the animal through voice, signal, or other effective controls.  


Handlers (students only)

  1. Handlers are responsible for complying with the Peoria County and city ordinances for animal rights and owner responsibilities, including displaying tags documenting their service animals are vaccinated.
  2. CLA, units of campus, and housing are not responsible for the cost of care necessary for a service animal's well-being - the arrangements and responsibilities with the care of a service animal are the sole responsibility of their handler at all times.  
  3. It is suggested that service animals wear a leash or harness and identification.  
  4. Handlers must be in full control of their service animal at all times.  

University Community

The University Community:

  1. Must allow service animals to accompany their handlers at all times and everywhere on campus, except for places where there is a health, environmental, or safety hazard.  
  2. Should contact the CLA if any questions or concerns arise relating to service animals.  
  3. Should report any service animals who misbehave, or any handlers who mistreat their service animals.

CLA (office responsible for providing services to students with disabilities)

The CLA staff:

  1. Develops the necessary policies and procedures for the University regarding service animals  
  2. Assists the University community when questions or concerns arise relating to service animals on camps, and seeks legal advice when necessary.  

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Temporary Disabilities

The CLA recognizes that individuals with temporarily disabling conditions that are a result of injuries, surgery or short-term medical conditions may need access to services and resources similar to individuals with permanent disabilities.  Examples of temporary disabilities may include, but are not limited to:  broken limbs, hand injuries, or short term impairments following surgery or medical treatments.  

Documentation Requirements for Temporary Disability

To receive accommodations for a temporary disability, the student must submit documentation to the CLA indicating the type of disability, severity, limitations, prognosis, and estimated duration of the disabling condition.  It is also helpful to know any adverse side effects caused by medication and recommendations for accommodations.  The documentation should be recent enough to identify current limitations. Additional documentation may be requested to verify the need for continued services after the estimated duration of the condition has expired.  

The student should call the CLA at 309-677-3654 and set up an appointment with the Director to review the available documentation of the temporary disability and discuss possible accommodation needs.  The Director will advise the student if any additional documentation will be required prior to setting up accommodations, as well as share information on potential resources.  

Potential Accommodations for Temporary Disabilities

Academic accommodations are approved on a case-by-case basis.  Examples of accommodations which may be available for a temporary arm, hand or upper extremity injury may include:  

**Scribe for exams

**Note-taking assistance

**Extended testing time

**Computer for essay exams

Students with temporary disabilities may want to contact Health Services to discuss any attendance or health related concerns at 309-677-2700.   

Students requiring assistance with residential hall accommodations should speak with Residential Living at 309-677-3221.  

The CLA and Bradley University do not provide personal assistance to students with temporary disabilities such as building-to-building transportation or transport of books or other personal items.  Wheelchairs, scooters and other mobility devices are considered personal devices and are not guaranteed or provided long-term loan by the CLA.  

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