*This chapter was updated as of 11/1/2020.  For more information, please refer to Chapter 32 - Mid-Year Updates and Addendums

Guidelines for Reasonable Accommodations for Memory Aid/Cue Sheet 

For students who have documented disabilities that affect memory, using a memory aid/cue sheet may be a reasonable accommodation.  The memory aid/cue sheet allows the student to demonstrate knowledge of course material by helping prompt the student’s memory, not by providing the answer.  Students are responsible for learning course materials, for discerning which materials may require cues or triggers, for developing the cues that will appear on the aid, and for securing the faculty member’s approval of the aid. 

If the faculty member is concerned this accommodations is unreasonable because it will lower standards, compromise an essential component of or fundamentally alter a course or program, such concerns should be addressed to DAS upon receipt of the “Notification of Academic Accommodations” email.  The determination that an accommodation is unreasonable is an institutional decision that must be made within legal parameters and in consultation with DAS.  Faculty should not unilaterally render and attempt to implement a judgement that an accommodation is unreasonable. 

What does a memory aid/ cue sheet look like? 

Styles of memory aids may vary. Generally, they can be written or typed, 10 or 12 font, on a large index card, OR up to one side of an 8 ½” x 11” sheet of paper. 

At the discretion of the instructor, a memory aid/cue sheet may or may not contain acronyms, short phrases, pictures, schematic diagrams or mind maps, names, definitions, tables, charts or key terms and certain formulae.  

A memory aid/cue sheet is not meant to record all the facts, concepts or processes being tested.  A memory aid/cue sheet should NOT 

  • Exceed one page (single sided) 
  • Include specific examples of how formulas are used 
  • Include “answer sheets’ or complete terms and definitions 
  • Include full course notes or all information from the course which is being evaluated 
  • Include open textbooks 
  • Serve as a substitute of studying – because a cue sheet will not help if a student has not studied the material. 


  • DAS will email the Notification of Academic Accommodations to the faculty regarding the support of a memory aid/cue sheet for quizzes, midterms and final exams. 
  • The faculty member should contact DAS if there are any concerns regarding this accommodation.  
  • If the faculty member believes this accommodation is not reasonable, then the process for an accommodation dispute should be followed. 
  • Faculty must complete an Alternative Testing Agreement before DAS can proctor the exam. 
  • Students are responsible for sending the proposed memory aid/cue sheet to the faculty member for approval at least two business days before the exams. 
  • The faculty member must review the memory aid/cue sheet and upon approval send it to the DAS Testing Center.  Students may not bring the approved memory aid/cue sheet with them to the exam. 
  •  Students must select this accommodation (memory aid/cue sheet) when scheduling course exams.  
It is important to note:  
  • Given the specific analysis for each course, it is entirely possible that the use of a memory aid will be allowed for some exams, and not allowed for others.  
  • DAS will consider requests for a memory aid/cue sheet on a case-by-case basis.  
  • DAS will not approve use of memory aids/cue sheets as a reasonable accommodation when using is a fundamental alteration of academic standards. 

Page Updated 08/2018