CampusLife

Academic Support & Access Center

Questions?

  • Academic Support & Access Center
    202-885-3360
    Fax: 202-885-1042
    asac@american.edu
    Mary Graydon Center, Room 243

    Monday-Thursday 9:00a.m. - 7:00p.m. Friday 9:00a.m. - 5:00p.m.

Mailing Address

Disability-Related Housing Accommodations Requests

General information about disability-related housing accommodations

Acronym Key
ASAC: Academic Support and Access Center
SAQ: Student Accommodations Questionnaire
HDP: Housing & Dining Programs

American University is committed to ensuring access to university programs and activities for all qualified students with disabilities. Please note the following: 

1. a request for a disability-related housing accommodation must be initiated through the ASAC and not through HDP; and

2. a student requesting disability-related housing accommodation must also participate in the general housing application process through HDP. 

Documentation for a disability-related housing request consists of an evaluation by a qualified professional that relates the current impact of the condition to the request and describes how the accommodation is necessary to provide access. Decisions on requests will be made after review of the submitted documentation and the student’s self-report (SAQ), and after the student has met with an ASAC staff member, either in person or by telephone.

Some examples of accommodations that American University may provide include: visual fire alarm; electronic door; accessibility features in room, bathroom, or common area; and proximity to an elevator. Because of numerous locations on campus that are available for reduced-distraction study space, housing accommodations are not generally provided for academic-related needs. Students requesting an accommodation for time management reasons are encouraged to utilize skill-building workshops and services at the ASAC. We cannot guarantee a dust, allergen, mold, mildew-free, or quiet living environment. First year students have a high chance of being placed in a triple room. Residence halls, by nature, are a communal living experience. Students are encouraged, but not required, to live on campus, and some may find their needs may be better met living off-campus.

Deadlines-Important

Due to heavy demand for on-campus housing, you must adhere to all housing application deadlines advertised by HDP and the ASAC. The earliest possible communication with the ASAC and HDP about your needs is encouraged. Failure to meet these deadlines may seriously impact the availability of rooms for assignment that will meet your disability accommodation needs.

Procedures for Requesting Disability-Related Housing Accommodations

Procedures for requesting disability-related housing accommodations vary according to your enrollment status. Please refer to the appropriate category as listed below.

1. First-year (freshman) students, including Washington Mentorship
2. Transfer students
3. Washington Semester Program students
4. Current students requesting housing accommodations for the first time
5. Students currently receiving housing accommodations who wish to renew request
6. All students who wish to live in on-campus housing for summer

1. First-year (freshman) students, including Washington Mentorship:

  • Apply for housing through HDP as part of the general enrollment process, meeting all required HDP deadlines
  • Register with the ASAC (three-step process: submit documentation to support housing request; submit the SAQ, being sure to address in detail all questions as they pertain to your housing needs as well as signing where required; and meet or schedule a phone appointment with an ASAC staff member)
  • Check AU email account on a regular basis for communication from the ASAC and HDP

In addition to meeting all HDP deadlines, requests for housing accommodations related to a disability must be submitted by May 1 for fall semester and November 15 for spring semester. Failure to meet the deadlines may result in a lack of room availability to meet your needs.

2. Transfer students:

  • Please check the HDP website (www.american.edu/housing) to see if you are eligible for on-campus housing
  • If eligible, apply for housing through HDP as part of the general enrollment process, meeting all required HDP deadlines
  • Register with the ASAC (three-step process: submit documentation to support housing request; submit the SAQ, being sure to address in detail all questions as they pertain to your housing needs as well as signing where required; and meet or schedule a phone appointment with an ASAC staff member)
  • Check AU email account on a regular basis for communication from the ASAC and HDP

In addition to meeting all HDP deadlines, requests for housing accommodations related to a disability must be submitted by July 1 for fall semester and November 15 for spring semester. Failure to meet the deadlines may result in a lack of room availability to meet your needs.

3. Washington Semester Program students:

  • Apply for housing through HDP as part of the general enrollment process to the Washington Semester Program, meeting all required HDP deadlines
  • Register with the ASAC (three-step process: submit documentation to support housing request; submit the SAQ, being sure to address in detail all questions as they pertain to your housing needs as well as signing where required; and meet or schedule a phone appointment with an ASAC staff member)
  • Check AU email account on a regular basis for communication from the ASAC and HDP

In addition to meeting all HDP deadlines, requests for housing accommodations related to a disability must be submitted by deadlines advertised by HDP. Failure to meet the deadlines may result in a lack of room availability to meet your needs.

4. Current students requesting housing accommodations for the first time:

  • Complete the HDP on-line general housing application by deadline advertised by HDP. If deadline is missed, apply for waitlist. Communicate all preferences for roommates, buildings, and residential programs through general HDP process
  • Register with the ASAC (three-step process: submit documentation to support housing request; submit the SAQ, being sure to address in detail all questions as they pertain to your housing needs as well as signing where required; and meet or schedule a phone appointment with an ASAC staff member)
  • Check AU email account on a regular basis for communication from the ASAC and HDP

Requests for housing accommodations related to a disability are subject to the same deadlines as set by HDP. The room selection process for students with approved disability-related housing accommodations is handled by the ASAC and precedes the general room selection process. Failure to meet the deadlines may result in a lack of room availability to meet your needs.

5. Students currently receiving housing accommodations who wish to renew request:

  • Complete the general housing application through HDP by deadline advertised by HDP. If deadline is missed, apply for waitlist. Communicate all preferences for roommates, buildings, and residential programs through general HDP process.
  • Submit updated documentation to support renewed housing accommodation request (Students may contact the ASAC to discuss whether documentation previously on file will support new housing request)
  • If the ASAC approves a housing accommodation, student will be notified by email and must sign agreement that 1) allows ASAC to communicate to HDP, and 2) accepts responsibility for all fees associated with on-campus housing
  • Check AU email account on a regular basis for communication from the ASAC and HDP

Requests for housing accommodations related to a disability are subject to the same deadlines as set by HDP. The room selection process for students with approved disability-related housing accommodations is handled by the ASAC and precedes the general room selection process. Failure to meet the deadlines may result in a lack of room availability to meet your needs.

6. All Students Who Wish to Live in On-Campus Housing for Summer:

  • Apply for summer housing through HDP. Requests are handled on a first-come-first-served basis by HDP.
  • Register with the ASAC if you have not done so previously (three-step process: submit documentation to support housing request; submit the SAQ, being sure to address in detail all questions as they pertain to your housing needs as well as signing where required; and meet or schedule a phone appointment with an ASAC staff member)
  • If you received a disability-related housing accommodation previously, that accommodation does not automatically continue, and students must renew a request as early as possible in advance of your anticipated move-in date.
  • Check AU email account on a regular basis for communication from the ASAC and HDP

Requests for summer housing accommodations related to a disability must be made within a reasonable amount of time. We suggest that you make your request at least four weeks prior to your arrival. Failure to do so may result in a lack of room availability to meet your needs.

Evaluation of Disability-Related Housing Accommodation Requests

Housing requests completed in compliance with the guidelines below are considered carefully and on a case-by-case basis. The following are considered in this process:

Timing of the Request

  • Was the request made within all applicable deadlines?
  • If the deadlines were not met, was the request made as soon as possible after identifying the need?

Severity of the Condition

  • Is the impact of the condition life threatening if the request is not met?
  • Is there a negative health impact that may be permanent if the request is not met?
  • Is the request an integral component of a treatment plan for the condition in question?

Feasibility and Availability

  • Is space currently available that meets the student’s needs?
  • Can space be adapted to provide the requested configuration without creating a safety hazard (related to electrical load, emergency egress, etc.)?
  • Are there other effective methods or housing configurations that would achieve similar benefits as the requested configuration?

Notification

Students will be notified by the ASAC if their request is granted or denied. If granted, students will be notified of room assignments by HDP. If you have been approved for an accommodation that is not reflected in your room assignment notification, or if you have any questions about disability-related accommodations, please contact the ASAC at 202-885-3360.

Please Note: The above guidelines are intended to inform students about the university’s decision-making process but are not exhaustive since we cannot anticipate every situation. This publication must be considered informational and not binding on the university. The university reserves the right to amend these guidelines with or without notice. Consult the ASAC for additional information.

If a student wishes to appeal a decision about a housing accommodation request or voice a formal complaint, please be aware of American University’s Disability Grievance Procedures.