Disability Resources for Students

UW On-Campus Housing

Housing accommodations are managed separately by each campus. Be sure to read the DRS and housing office process for the campus you want to live on. 

The types of accommodations provided are dependent on the nature of the individual’s disability, impact within the on-campus living environment, and provided on a case by case basis. DRS works in collaboration with the UW Housing office to provide accommodations that meet individual student needs.

Housing Accommodations by UW Campus:

Seattle campus housing information (scroll below)

UW Bothell campus housing information

UW Tacoma campus housing information

Seattle Campus Housing Accommodations

Deadlines to apply for DRS Seattle housing accommodations

April 1st for returning HFS students seeking a change to their Fall quarter housing accommodations. Students ONLY need to reach out to DRS for NEW accommodations. Otherwise, your current accommodations will automatically transfer between quarters.

June 1st for newly admitted students and students who have NOT lived in HFS on-campus housing before seeking Fall quarter housing accommodations.

November 1st for students seeking Winter quarter housing accommodations.

February 1st for students seeking Spring quarter housing accommodations.

May 1st for students seeking Summer quarter housing accommodations.

Notes: Students must follow all HFS and DRS timelines.
Determination of housing accommodations are subject to availability.
Applying for DRS accommodations does NOT give preference to your request.

On-campus housing accommodations are determined by DRS in collaboration with the University’s Office of Housing and Food Services (HFS) in alignment with HFS policy. Accommodation decisions are made based on impacts within the on-campus living environments students seek to reside in. Due to the nature of housing assignments, requests submitted after the deadline will be processed on a space available basis and may result in waiting until another assignment period within the academic year.

NOTE- If you need Housing Accommodations for a UW-sponsored off-campus program (study abroad, clinical placement, Friday Harbor labs, etc.), you need to complete steps 1 & 2 below. You do NOT need to apply to HFS housing. 

Step 1:   Apply to DRS

  • Complete myDRS new student application (Use UW NetID with link above OR purple button on main DRS page
  • Submit documentation that verifies your disability/health condition and specifically speaks to the need for housing accommodations

Step 2:   Fill out “Housing Accommodations Questionnaire”

  • Log in with UW NetID to access the form.
    • Helpful Hint: For new admits to the UW, make sure you confirm your acceptance and get your UW NetID before filling out this form.

Step 3:   Apply to HFS Housing

  • Click link above to access MyHFS Portal (UW NetID login required), or visit HFS website to access portal
  • Select “disability accommodation needed” on housing profile
  • Check HFS website for housing application deadlines, which may differ from DRS housing accommodations deadlines.


Dietary Accommodations

If you are seeking accommodations for dietary restrictions, please schedule a consult with UW Dining Housing and Food Services (HFS) by emailing hfsnutrition@uw.edu to explore options such as:  

  • Discuss specific dietary needs and explore options including use of reservable kitchens that are designated allergen free such as a gluten free kitchen.
  • Learn how to access ordering options. 
  • Understand how to eat safely on campus through early access to meal plans, understanding menu board icons, and color coding of food prep areas.

Please note: Having a special dietary need does not waive the dining account requirement for residence hall residents or give priority to be assigned to a specific room type such as a single room or studio. If you have any further questions, please contact HFS at 206-543-4059 or at hfsinfo@uw.edu


Emotional Support Animals (ESA) and Service Animals


The University has a general “no pets” policy in all of its buildings, including University Housing. However, Service Animals and Emotional Support Animals (ESAs) can be approved as an accommodation for UW on-campus housing through DRS.


Note- Service animals do not need to be approved by DRS to enter on-campus buildings. They only need DRS approval for on-campus residential living.

If you are approved for an ESA or service animal by DRS, UW Housing and Food Services (HFS) will: 

Service Animals

As defined by the ADA, as well as UW APS 46.6., a service animal (dogs, and in unique circumstances, miniature horses) has been trained to do work or perform tasks that mitigates the impact of the person’s disability. The service animal is an access need. 

If you are requesting a Service Animal in housing be prepared to answer the following 2 questions: 

  1. Is the animal a service animal required because of a disability? 
  2. What work or tasks has the animal been trained to perform? 

Emotional Support Animals (ESAs)

As defined by UW APS 46.6., Emotional Support Animals (also known as therapy animals) can include any animals (not just dogs). ESAs provide passive support like companionship, relieving loneliness, and helping with depression, anxiety, and certain phobias. ESAs do NOT have special training to perform tasks that mitigate the impact of a person’s disability.  

In order for DRS to approve an ESA accommodation, you will need to provide documentation from a qualified healthcare provider that answers the following two questions: 

  1. Is it your recommendation that this student be approved for an ESA in the residential setting?
  2. What are the symptoms the student experiences and how does the animal help mitigate those symptoms in a residential setting?


If you are needing to request your Emotional Support Animal/Service Animal as an employee (UW or student), you need to reach out to Disability Services Office DSO to request this accommodation in your work environment.


FAQ’s on Housing Accommodations

Does having a disability accommodation give me priority housing assignments?

No. Housing applications with disability accommodations requested and approved by the listed deadlines receive priority within each student’s priority assignments status. This means that approved accommodation placements will happen before others with the same priority status, but it will not increase a priority status to a higher one for a student.

Can DRS waive termination or other HFS housing fees as disability accommodation?

No. Students should review their housing agreements before terminating their housing agreements.

Do I need to complete more than just the housing application to receive housing disability accommodations?

Yes. The process for requesting disability accommodations is separate from the UW housing application process. Students need to apply for UW housing, and request housing accommodations through DRS. Please review the Steps to Receive Housing Accommodations, above.

Can I apply for priority in Family Housing?

Yes. The reason why family housing on campus is needed based on the disability and or health condition will need to be stated. Students with disabilities in family housing needs can request to be placed in 1st priority category. The request will need to be reviewed by DRS for approval. Review the Family Housing Priority System.

Can dependents and/or family of UW students living in family housing request housing accommodations?

Yes.  The UW student works with DRS to make the housing request for their family members living with them. The UW student will need to complete process outlines in the Steps to Receive Housing Accommodations, above.

Can I submit a request after a deadline?

Yes. Accommodation requests will still be processed after the deadline; however, there is a high likelihood that you will be on a waitlist, especially if assignments have already been made for the quarter. Review the UW Housing Accommodations Deadlines.

Is it possible to bring special furniture or my own mattress if medically necessary?

Yes. With an approved accommodation, this can be arranged with advance notice. Please review the Steps to Receive Housing Accommodations above.

Does having ADHD or a learning disability qualify for a single room to have a specific study environment?

No. Single rooms are not assigned based on diagnosis of ADHD or learning disability and a need for a quiet study space. HFS Residence staff can help facilitate our agreements to allow both roommates to successfully study in their room. In addition, study areas within residence halls, academic study areas, and the various campus libraries are alternative places where students can study.

What if I am diagnosed with a disability after the housing deadline?

 If you are diagnosed with a disability after deadlines have passed, still follow the steps above to receive housing accommodations. DRS will make an effort to process your request in a timely manner, but there may be a delay in implementation of accommodations based upon housing availability.


Additional Resources for Seattle Housing Accommodations

Housing Room Change/Room Swap

Residence Halls At a Glance (you can find floor plans by each hall here)

Housing & Food Services Accommodation Information

Housing Agreements information


(Updated 5/2022)