Reasonable Extended Deadlines

Regardless of disability, students are expected to fulfill the essential requirements of courses, including meeting completion dates for assignments. However, if a student has a disability that may occasionally impact their ability to complete assignments at the scheduled time, flexibility in assignment deadlines is considered an appropriate accommodation.

Hopefully, a student’s disability will not interfere with timely completion of assignments; however, if the student has a disability with random or cyclical acute episodes, the accommodation allows for flexibility in assignment deadlines and make-up work. The number of days given for each assignment extension depends on the interactive or participatory nature of a course, or is based on department, college, or accrediting agency rules.

If special consideration in meeting deadlines is needed, students need to work with the instructor to determine the maximum extension that can be given before compromising the integrity of the course/program. SDS will address student/instructor questions and concerns regarding accommodations on a case-by-case basis upon request.

Please note the following:

  • Unexpected illness or injury, a recent diagnosis, onset, or change in condition rarely warrants accommodations in assignment deadlines. Rather, these conditions may warrant a withdrawal. See KSU’s Administrative Emergency Withdrawal policies at
  • Additionally, the accommodation is not intended to cover the following:
    • unlimited acceptance of late work
    • retroactive requests
    • personal organization, and time management difficulties
  • Some instructors allow all students in the class more time than they believe is needed for students to complete assignments. For example, an instructor gives an assignment they believe should only take two days to complete but allows students three days. Please be aware that if you provide all students in the class with “extended time” or buffer time to complete assignments, legal guidance suggests that it would be discriminatory not to provide the extended time in addition to the time given to all students in the course.
  • Instructors should never unilaterally deny a student's eligible accommodation. Instructors should be prepared to provide a rationale if they determine, in consultation with SDS, that extending assignment deadlines would result in changes to essential components of the course.

The Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights has provided the following questions to assess the degree to which strict adherence to assignment due dates is an essential part of a class:

  • What does the course description and syllabus say regarding late work?
  • To what extent does the fundamental nature of the course rely upon completion of assignments within a specific time frame as an essential method for learning?
  • Is the completion of an assignment within a specific time frame a critical component of an assessment activity?
  • To what degree does a student’s failure to submit timely completion of assignments constitute a significant loss of the educational experience for other students in the class?

Instructor Responsibilities

  • Consider adjustments to assignment deadlines or the class policy on accepting late work that do not result in fundamental alterations to the course design or essential components. See the above section for more information.
  • Respond as soon as possible to students’ request for extensions on specific assignments.
  • If deadline extensions are workable, work with the student in good faith to determine a reasonable amount of time and verify in writing the specific plan or agreed upon alternate deadlines

Reasonable Extended Deadlines Agreement Form