Office of Student Life

Disability Services

COVID-Related Accommodation Requests

Navigation Links:


Overview

For employment-related requests (including graduate assistantships): Visit the Office of Human Resources website.

The university is committed to supporting students and program participants with COVID-19 based risk factors. We at Student Life Disability Services (SLDS), in conjunction with the Office of Institutional Equity, will work with students who are most vulnerable to complications from COVID-19 to ensure that they have the necessary resources to participate in university life as safely as possible.

You may submit a request for COVID-related accommodations for any of the following reasons:

  • I have tested positive for COVID-19 and am isolating in my residence.
  • I am in quarantine due to COVID-19 exposure, symptom expression or out-of-state travel requirements.
  • I have a medical condition that puts me at a higher risk of serious illness from COVID-19, as defined by the CDC (see FAQ for details).
  • I have another high-risk factor, as defined by the CDC (e.g. age, obesity, pregnancy).
  • I live with or care for someone at high-risk due to severe immunocompromised state or medical condition (e.g., solid organ transplant, brittle diabetes, HIV)
  • I have a medical condition or disability not included in the CDC health factors that I believe is affected by COVID-19.

Types of Requests

We may approve a wide range of COVID-19 related accommodations, including:

  • Short-term academic flexibility during your isolation or quarantine period
  • Full semester remote participation for on-campus academic requirements (see next section for details)
  • Additional/enhanced personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • On-campus housing accommodations
  • Alternative arrangements for face covering requirement

Remote Participation for AU21

Ohio State will primarily offer in-person instruction in the 2021-2022 academic year. Most of the university’s academic programs have essential in-person components. Remote participation can be approved as a reasonable accommodation if a student’s disability make them unable to participate in-person. Students eligible for remote participation are approved for 1 semester. Approval is contingent upon determining feasibility for the student’s courses in collaboration with faculty. This accommodation is not intended to be used for multiple semesters in a row, nor to convert an in-person program into an all-virtual experience.

If you are interested in requesting full-semester remote participation for autumn, please make note of the following:

  • Remote participation, if approved, is on a per-semester basis. Previously eligible students will not be automatically eligible for future semesters.
  • To ensure timely processing of requests, you should submit your request with supporting documentation no later than July 1 (for returning students) or August 1 (for incoming students). We will still consider later requests, but course delivery options may be limited past this deadline.
  • Requests will require a letter of support from your healthcare provider. We encourage you to share our Remote Participation Documentation Guidance for Healthcare Providers (click here) with your provider.

The provider’s letter of support must include the following:

  1. A description of your professional relationship.
  2. A confirmation of your relevant medical or mental health diagnoses.
  3. A statement of support for remote participation, including an estimated end date when you can return to in-person classes.
  4. A description of how your disability creates a significant barrier to your full and meaningful participation in an on-campus experience.
    • For students with CDC-recognized COVID-high-risk conditions (e.g. diabetes): The description should include a holistic assessment of your health risks for being on campus, considering: your unique medical profile, the latest information on vaccine efficacy, and the university’s safety practices.
    • For students without high-risk conditions (e.g. mental health conditions): The description should include an explanation of how your disability will disproportionately affect you compared to your peers such that remote participation is the only viable option for you. This impact must go beyond the typical stress or nervousness that most people are expected to feel in readjusting to an in-person experience.

Request Procedure

Schedule Adjustments:

If you have concerns about the modality of your upcoming courses, you should first contact your academic advisor to discuss possible adjustments to your schedule to meet your needs. If scheduling adjustments do not adequately address your COVID-related concerns, then please submit an accommodation request.

SLDS-Registered Students: 

No form required. Please contact your Access Specialist with your request. If you attend a regional campus, please contact your respective Disability Services office.

Students Not Registered with SLDS:

  1. Submit a COVID-Related Accommodation Request Form.

  2. If you are making a request due to having a medical condition or disability that is impacted by COVID-19, please upload documentation with your request form. (See FAQ for details)

  3. Monitor your Buckeyemail for status updates and next steps.

Disclosures: Disability Services will not use or disclose any medical information you provide for any other purposes unless you authorize such disclosure or if such disclosure is otherwise required by law.

Questions/Assistance: Please contact us at slds@osu.edu or 614-292-3307.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: If I have a medical condition or disability that is impacted by COVID-19, what kind of documentation do I need to upload with my request form? 

We will review and consider all pieces of documentation submitted. If you are submitting a request due to your own health condition, then your documentation should confirm your diagnosis and address how your condition is affected by COVID-19. If you are requesting full-semester remote participation, please review our Documentation Guidance for Healthcare Providers and share with your provider.

Q: I have tested positive for COVID-19 or I have been exposed to COVID-19. What should I do?

First, please take care of yourself. Follow the university’s guidance on health reporting and quarantine/isolation procedures. For more information, visit the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes website.

If you are working with the university's Contact Tracing Team, then you will automatically receive a statement of support for academic flexibility during your quarantine/isolation via email within the next few days. If you are working with providers outside the university, you can submit a request using our form. After you have submitted a request, we will email you the statement of support. Once you receive the email, forward it onto your instructors as needed. You or your instructors can contact us with any questions or concerns.

Q: Do I have to wear a face mask?

Yes. Face masks must be worn in indoor settings, including, but not limited to: classrooms, common areas, residence halls, conference rooms, shared office spaces, hallways, buses and shared vehicles on all Ohio State campuses. Effective immediately, fully vaccinated people do not need to wear a mask outdoors on Ohio State campuses. The university continues to strongly recommend that unvaccinated people wear masks when they cannot maintain safe distancing. Note that individuals are fully vaccinated 14 days after their final dose of vaccine. For more information, visit the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes website.

If you are seeking an exemption from this requirement, please submit a COVID-related accommodation request.

Q: What conditions are considered high-risk by the CDC?

The CDC provides guidance on health-related factors which may increase the risk of complications from COVID-19. The list of factors may evolve as information about COVID is discovered, so please visit the CDC coronavirus webpage for the most up to date and complete listing. Some of the high-risk conditions include:

  • Cancer
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Chronic lung diseases, including COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), asthma (moderate-to-severe), interstitial lung disease, cystic fibrosis, and pulmonary hypertension
  • Dementia or other neurological conditions
  • Diabetes (type 1 or type 2)
  • Down syndrome
  • Heart conditions (such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, cardiomyopathies or hypertension)
  • HIV infection
  • Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system)
  • Liver disease
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Sickle cell disease thalassemia
  • Smoking, current or former
  • Solid organ or blood stem cell transplant
  • Stroke or cerebrovascular disease, which affects blood flow to the brain
  • Substance use disorders