April 23, 2021

College of Natural Sciences Lab Accommodations

To: Students registered for College of Natural Sciences laboratory courses Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, LIFE, Chemistry, Computer Sciences, Data Science, Mathematics, Physics, Psychology, Statistics
From: College of Natural Sciences and Student Disability Center
Re: Important information regarding accommodations

Student Responsibilities for Accommodations in College of Natural Sciences Lab Courses

The College of Natural Sciences and the Student Disability Center are committed to providing you with equity and access to environments and experiences that support your learning. The commitment applies to both laboratory and lecture courses. You may find that your laboratory courses have learning objectives and associated in-class activities that are different from traditional lecture courses. Labs are experiential and typically change from week to week in order to follow the content of a related lecture course, or to help students build on knowledge from the previous week’s activities. This often requires complicated set-ups and changes to the materials and equipment that students use, depending upon the subject of study. Therefore, some accommodations may be difficult to implement.
The following information is meant to provide guidelines to ensure that your participation in College of Natural Sciences courses provides you with the best opportunities for success. Situations requiring accommodations beyond the scope of these guidelines will be considered depending on the impact of a student’s disability and only in consultation with the SDC and the course instructor/TA/coordinator.

Communication with Faculty:

It is the student’s responsibility to contact their instructor/TA/coordinator as soon as they receive their memo from SDC, in order to discuss individual needs. Students are advised to read the SDC section of the syllabus for each course prior to the discussion with the instructor/TA/coordinator.

Make-Up Labs:

It is strongly encouraged that students consider registering for lab sections that meet earlier in the week to allow for possible rescheduling later in the week if circumstances require. In cases where labs are set up for a full week, it may be possible to ‘make up’ a missed lab during that week, if arrangements are made with the course instructor/TA/coordinator. However, because labs often follow a weekly cycle, in general, it is not possible to make up a lab the following week.


Laboratory courses have worked to integrate Universal Design principles for access into their educational environments. Therefore, they have identified deadlines on the syllabus for assignments that are designed to be sufficiently long to accommodate students who may require extended time to complete assignments. Often a lab report may be designed to take only an hour or two to complete but may not be due until a few days later. Therefore, laboratory courses have embedded accessibility needs for students who require additional processing and work time into their deadlines. It is expected that all students submit all assignments, including laboratory reports or other assignments associated with laboratory courses, within the deadlines as defined in the course syllabus.

It is recognized that some students may experience severe and unpredictable medical conditions in which a deadline extension is a necessary accommodation. Whenever possible, the laboratory instructor/TA/course coordinator will provide the necessary deadline extensions for students who have these identified accommodations when notified by the student in a timely manner, preferably before the deadline is reached.

Alternate Accommodations:

There is an understanding that accommodations cannot fundamentally alter the nature of a course. Therefore, there are limits to what accommodations may work within a laboratory setting. If an accommodation fundamentally alters an essential objective of the lab course, the instructor/TA/coordinator will work with the student and the SDC to identify a reasonable alternative accommodation.

Reminders about Accommodation Responsibilities:

As with all accommodations, retroactive accommodations (accommodations applied to past-due assignments/labs) are generally not permitted.
Students are responsible for notifying SDC Accommodation Specialist with any questions, concerns, or issues arise as they come up so the SDC and instructor/TA/course coordinator can address the concerns as they are occurring instead of after-the-fact.

Service Dogs:

Please contact SDC if there are questions or concerns regarding the use of a service dog in a lab.

Contact Information:

Email: sdc_csu@colostate.edu
Phone: 970-491-6385
Office: TILT 121