Accommodations for Events & Activities

Institutions should ensure equal opportunities for students in the classroom, for class-related activities outside the classroom, and in non-academic programs such as housing, counseling, student organizations, and student activities.

Programs and public events — such as campus tours and orientation, commencement, sporting events, performances and conferences — should also be accessible to deaf people who are not students, faculty, or staff, including friends, families and visitors.

An illustration of a theater. Two teal humanoid figures are on stage surrounded by a green curtain. Teal seats are in rows in front of the stage. 

Planning for Accessible Events

When planning for accessible events, institutions should:

  • Determine funding policy and procedures for accommodation requests prior to receiving any requests. Equitable Access Guide: Section 5: Beyond the Classroom: Non-Academic Programs has information on centralized and decentralized funding structures.
  • Designate an office or staff members responsible for coordinating event accommodations.
  • Have disability inclusion statements and language in event advertisements which explain how to request accommodations and provide contact information.
  • Have working assistive listening devices available at events with information available at the venue about how to access these devices. Some of these devices should be hearing aid compatible.
  • Provide both speech-to-text and interpreting services for large public events without the need for formal requests. This will provide greater access by considering the audience’s wide range of communication needs.
  • This proactive approach will also minimize last-minute requests, as providers are less likely to be available on short notice.
  • For live-streamed public events, a single video of an event with captions and a picture-in-picture interpreter is a common practice.
  • Have all media used during an event or program captioned, since captions benefit everyone.

Additional Resources