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Student Disability Services

Interpreter Services Guidelines

Butler University is committed to providing reasonable accommodations including excellent and timely interpreter services.

The individual requiring the interpreter is responsible for making the interpreter request; two weeks advance notice is needed so the necessary arrangements can be made.  Although attempts will be made to honor requests on short notice, requests which do not allow two weeks advance notice increase the possibility that interpreter services will be unavailable.

Student Disability Services (SDS) is the department on campus that assists the Butler campus community in facilitating interpreter services.  Departments are required to contact SDS for consultation whenever an interpreter request or question is raised so as to determine what is required, remain in compliance, and receive guidance about how to appropriately address the situation. Ordinarily, it is expected that the department will cover costs for interpreter requests for activities and events other than academic coursework.  If a department wishes to be considered for University reimbursement for interpreter services, please forward written request to SDS at  The final decision regarding reimbursement lies with the Butler University Vice President of Finance.

Interpreter services are provided for individuals who are participating in Butler sponsored events as well as for Butler students who are enrolled in academic coursework.

Interpreters are often provided for off-campus events that are part of coursework requirements and for many, but not necessarily all, co-curricular activities.  These situations require a discussion with SDS so that they can be individually considered.   

ASL interpreter requests for Butler University-sponsored events being held in Clowes Memorial Hall and Hinkle Fieldhouse should be placed directly with the venue. This is applicable to both Butler and non-Butler students.  If there are concerns or questions, please immediately contact SDS at 317-940-9308.

For all other university-sponsored events, requests for interpreter services are to be made by completing and submitting the Interpreter Request Form for Butler Sponsored Events and Coursework.

Student-athletes who wish to request interpreter services for athletic practices, games, and activities should  make their interpreter request by using the Interpreter Request Form for Butler Sponsored Events and Academic Coursework.  SDS will forward the request directly to the appropriate athletics department which will then take responsibility for handling and funding interpreter services.  SDS is available for consultation as noted above.

Butler University does not provide interpreters for events or circumstances that are personal in nature.

Butler students who wish to request interpreter services should: 

  • Immediately register with Student Disability Services by submitting the necessary documentation and by also participating in an initial intake interview in order to discuss current levels of functioning, accommodation needs, and policies and procedures.
  • Utilize, every semester, the priority registration system offered to students registered with Student Disability Services. In addition, students should meet with SDS, every semester, as soon as they have completed their course schedule for the upcoming semester so that interpreter requests can be discussed and determined. Early discussion helps to ensure plenty of time for scheduling interpreters; at least two weeks advance notice is needed when making an interpreter request. Although attempts will be made to honor requests made on short notice, requests which do not allow two weeks advance notice increase the possibility that interpreter services will be unavailable. 
  • Inform SDS, upon receipt of the course syllabus or immediately upon determination of need, as to any additional course related requirements that will require interpreter services. 
  • Make requests for interpreter services by utilizing the Interpreter Request Form available at or in Jordan Hall (JH) 136. The completed form should be returned to or to JH 136.  
  • Inform SDS immediately about any course schedule changes. Adherence to this practice will help to ensure consistent and timely services. 
  • Notify SDS immediately if a class has been cancelled by an instructor. 
  • Contact SDS immediately if an interpreter does not show up for an assignment or for any problems or concerns. This will help ensure that the matter is addressed quickly and properly. 

Absence From Class

Students who expect to be absent from class should notify SDS as soon as possible (at least 24 hours in advance) so that the interpreter can be notified. Without 24 hours advance notice, the interpreter may still charge the University for the assignment. Students who do not give 24 hours' notice regarding a planned absence will receive an unexcused absence.  After three unexcused absences, interpreting services will be suspended until the student has a discussion with Student Disability Services. Students should either report an absence by email at or by phone at 317-940-9308. In the event a staff member does not answer the phone, students should report an absence by voicemail message both during and after office hours. Students who become ill and are unable to go to class must report the absence to SDS immediately (before 5:00 p.m. for evening classes) so the interpreter can be notified.

Student No-Show Policy

Butler University has adopted the no-show policy which is commonly used by colleges and universities. That is, a student who is absent on three occasions without informing SDS according to the guidelines stated above in ABSENCE FROM CLASS will be subject to suspension of services until they initiate and follow through on a discussion about this with SDS.

Late Arrival To Class

If a student is more than fifteen minutes late to class, it will be considered an unexcused absence. The interpreter will leave class and report the unexcused absence to SDS; the student will then be issued an unexcused absence.

Interpreter Expectations

Instructors/facilitators are informed, prior to the first day of class, that there will be an interpreter in the classroom or meeting.  Instructors are provided a copy of the written document, Information Regarding Interpreters on Campus, which provides information as to how to work with an interpreter. In every case, interpreters are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and to abide by the Code of Ethics developed by the Registry for the Deaf. Students should immediately report interpreter no-shows or any other interpreter concerns to Student Disability Services in JH 136.  Alternatively, students should be aware that interpreters are required to report student no-shows and tardiness to SDS.

For further information please contact Student Disability Services in JH136, by phone at 317-940-9308, or by email at