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Alternative Format Policy and Procedure

Student Responsibilities

  1. Register with the Office of Disability Services (ODS) by following the appropriate procedures.
  2. Provide the ODS with appropriate documentation validating the request for materials in alternative formats.
  3. Students who are approved for alternative format accommodations must complete and submit the Alternative Format Request Form for each textbook, including the title, authors or editors, edition number, ISBN, and course information. Students can find this information from the Texas State University Bookstore or on the course syllabus.
  4. Since the time it takes to find or convert a document will depend on a variety of factors, requests for textbooks and/or course materials in alternative formats should be made as soon as possible. Failure to notify the ODS within a timely manner may mean that the ODS is unable to arrange the services with the time provided, but will not (a) preclude the student from making the request, or (b) prevent the ODS making its best effort to provide the service in the time provided.
    *Please Note: The ODS can provide alternative formats in either electronic texts or Braille. Because many materials are available in digital formats, the time frame for the ODS to find and provide the requested electronic text may vary depending on the publisher. Braille materials may take even more time due to the complexity and size of the original text. Therefore, it is essential for students to submit their requests as soon as possible to allow the ODS to obtain and/or convert the requested texts.
  5. Purchase or rent a copy of each textbook or course packet for which an alternative format is requested. Provide the ODS with a copy of the receipt to validate proof of purchase. (This action is a copyright requirement. Alternative formats cannot be provided to a student who has not purchased the text).
  6. Meet with your professors to (a) determine which textbooks and other reading materials you will need to have provided in an alternative format; (b) determine when materials will be needed in class; and (c) ensure the professors are aware that the quality of original materials is essential to successful document conversions. Inform them that if they have questions, they can contact the ODS.
  7. If the ODS is not able to find an alternative format through our resources, you will need to provide the office with a copy of the textbook or other reading materials you need so the ODS can convert them. (a) the ODS will unbind the book and convert it into an electronic format. (b) the ODS will not be responsible for re-binding the book. (c) the ODS cannot unbind a rented textbook and convert it. (d) Provide the ODS with a copy of the course syllabus for each course in which document conversions are requested so the ODS can ensure it is providing you with the converted material in the order it is needed.
  8. Notify the ODS immediately if there are any changes in the status of a request, class schedules, course requirements, alternative format needs, or if some or all the readings for a course are no longer needed or if the course is dropped.
  9. When electronic files are received from publishers or scanning, the ODS will send a link to your Texas State Email (BobcatMail) in order to download the files through the TXST File Transfer System. When files are received from Bookshare, the ODS will send an email to your BobcatMail with download instructions.
    Note: Bookshare will at times offer multiple download formats, which means it is important to know the format that best meets your needs.
  10. Inform the ODS if there are any problems with the alternative formats.
  11. Return and/or delete all alternative format materials by the end of the semester or once the materials are no longer needed for their respective courses.

ODS Responsibilities

  1. Verify that a student who requests alternative formats is registered with ODS and eligible to receive this accommodation.
  2. Train students to fill out the Alternative Format Request Form when necessary.
  3. Verify proof of purchase of any texts when necessary.
  4. Acquire or create an alternative format of the text(s) requested in a timely manner.  Every effort will be made to find textbooks that are already available in accessible formats.  Texts that are not already available in alternative formats will be converted when possible to the student’s preference.  ODS reserves the right to provide students with other types of alternative formats as necessary to provide access.  In such cases, ODS will ensure that the format is accessible to the student. Students will be notified and involved in the process of deciding the best option.
  5. Contact the student to inform them that the alternative format is available and how they should acquire it.  If alternative formats are being provided in installments, ODS will notify the student when the next section is completed and available.
  6. Assist with problem resolution if the student experiences difficulties in accessing or using the format provided.
  7. Promote student independence by offering training to students in the use of technologies to access their own materials.
  8. Collect all materials on loan to the student by the last day of finals in the semester, if necessary.

Copyright Notice

Copyrighted materials provided or reproduced in an accessible format by ODS for a student with a disability may not be copied, shared, distributed, or sold, except in accordance with the provisions of the copyright laws.


I hereby certify that I have received, read, and agree to abide by the Alternative Format Policy and Procedure.

I agree that I will not copy or reproduce alternative format materials nor allow anyone else to do so pursuant to the requirements of the Copyright Revision Act of 1976 as amended (17 U.S.C. § 101 et seq.) and the Texas State University Student Handbook Computer Software Use Policy.  Failure to adhere to this policy may result in violations of federal or state law and university policy.

I understand that this agreement will remain in effect as long as I am a student at Texas State University.