Notetaking Guidelines and Procedures


Note-taking assistance is provided to students whose documented disability impacts their ability to effectively take notes during course lectures and labs. Working collaboratively with the student, the SSWD counselor will determine the appropriate type of assistance for specific courses, including one or more options to enable students to create class notes. The process of creating and organizing notes reinforces learning, so students should take their own notes whenever possible.  Notes are provided as an accommodation and should not be distributed to other students.

Notetaking Support Options

  • Shared Class Notes/Volunteer Note taker
  • Paid Note taker
  • Smartpen
  • Digital Recorder


Shared Class Notes/Volunteer Note taker:

  1. Student can recruit a volunteer note taker from within the class
    • Select and request a classmate to share notes.
  2. Or professor assists in recruitment:
  3. Request an SSWD Note Taker Request letter for your professor
  4. Provide the professor with SSWD Note taker Request letter for the professor to make a confidential announcement for a volunteer or provide copies of professor notes if available. The SSWD counselor can assist with contacting the professor, if desired.
  5. Connect with the volunteer after class to facilitate communication and timely receipt of a copy of the notes.

       Methods of Sharing Notes:

  •      NCR paper: request from SSWD counselor and provide to volunteer
  •      Photocopying: deliver notes to SSWD for copying (available within  
  •             24 hours) 
  •      Pictures of notes or electronic notes (if laptop being used)

 Paid Note Taker:

  • An external note taker may be needed in labs which do not utilize partners, when notes must be converted to Braille or other formats for access, concentrated short session classes, other non-standard formats, or when a volunteer cannot be identified or is not appropriate.
  • Return the Request for Note Taker letter signed by the professor to SSWD or notify SSWD counselor if there is no volunteer
  • SSWD will recruit a paid note taker to attend class
  • Meet with the paid note taker and Support Service Coordinator to review and sign Service Contract and Consent Form.

Alternatives will be explored if note taker recruitment is unsuccessful.


  • Check out smartpen and accompanying notepad from SSWD Support Services Coordinator and sign “Equipment Checkout” form and “Equipment Guidelines”.
  • Review training manual and links providing instruction
  • Schedule a training appointment with the Support Services Coordinator if needed.

Digital Recorder:

  • Check out digital recorder from Support Services Coordinator and sign “Equipment Checkout” form.


I understand that SSWD utilizes a volunteer note taker (classmate) as a part of the notetaking support and accommodation process and may utilize assistance from the professor in identifying a volunteer. I understand that if a volunteer is located my identity will be disclosed to the volunteer to facilitate timely receipt of a copy of the notes. I also understand that I am free to seek and identify a volunteer on my own if I prefer to do so. If I have concerns with this process, I understand I can discuss alternatives with my SSWD counselor.


I was informed of the SSWD Notetaker Guidelines, and my Counselor gave a copy of the policy to me.

Student Signature: _____________________

Print Name: _____________________

Date: _____________________

Please inform SSWD at if you encounter any problems accessing the SSWD web site.