​What is a Functional Limitation

A person has a functional limitation when he or she, because of a disability, does not have the physical, cognitive or psychological ability to independently perform the routine activities of daily living. Examples of functional limitations include (but are not limited to): 

  • Difficulty reading text
  • Difficulty learning number facts
  • Easily distractible
  • Weak memory skills
  • Difficulty making decisions or problem-solving
  • Difficulty with organization and prioritization
  • Difficulty understanding oral information
  • Unable to follow a set of instructions in the correct sequence

What are Accommodations

An accommodation is any change to the environment or in the way things are customarily done, that gives a person with a disability an opportunity to participate in the application process, job, program or activity that is equal to the opportunity given to similarly situated people without disabilities.

Reasonable Accommodation (RA) in the Job Corps setting may involve a modification or adjustment within an environment (e.g., academic, career technical, work-based learning, recreational, residential), and may involve a modification or adjustment to a policy, program, or procedure.  RA can also be any other action, such as providing appropriate services or products that removes barriers for the person with a disability.

Tips for Generating Accommodations

  • Talk to the individual with the disability.
  • Consider accommodations that use or support the strengths of the person with a disability.
  • Consider adaptations that incorporate preferred learning styles (e.g., visual, auditory, kinesthetic).
  • Looking at the functional limitations associated with the disability, determine what accommodations will eliminate barriers to participation in all areas of the program.
  • Be sure to individualize accommodations—not just a “one size fits all” approach.
  • Consider accommodations the individual may have received in the past (IEP, 504 plan, other assessments and reports that certify the disability).
  • Be sure the accommodations are relevant to the situation(s).

Common Functional Limitations and Accommodation Options for LDs:

 Disability, Deficit, Disorder Functional Limitations Accommodation Options
  • Difficulty reading text
  • Weak handwriting and spelling
  • Poor memory skills
  • Di​fficulty summarizing what has been read
  • Provide extra time to complete reading tasks or books on tape
  • Provide use of a computer and/or spell check
  • ​Use picture/graphic imagery
  • Provide visual aids and extra time

  • Difficulty with word problems
  • Difficulty using multiple steps in math calculations
  • Difficulty with telling time
  • Difficulty organizing problems on the page
  • Difficulty learning number facts

  • Provide visual representations of words
  • Break math assignments down into single steps
  • Use a digital watch or phone apps
  • Provide color coded notes or allow the use of graph paper
  • Provide math fact charts or “cheat sheets”

  • Difficulty organizing and putting thoughts on paper
  •  Difficulty with syntax, structure and grammar
  •  May have illegible handwriting
  •  May exhibit strange wrist, body, or paper positioning

  • ​Allow the use of a dictation device, word processor, or notetaker
  •  Provide correct models and grammar-check technology
  • Allow the use of a word processor or computer
  • Provide pencil grips and/or specially designed writing aids


  • Unable to follow a set of instructions in the correct sequence
  • Easily distractible
  • Sense of balance may be affected
  • May appear to be disorganized or have difficulty finding things

  • Provide step-by-step instructions
  • Provide a distraction-free workspace and/or headphone
  • Provide adaptive seat/furniture/workspace
  • Clearly label frequently used classroom and training materials; provide color coded notes

Visual Processing

  • Difficulty copying information accurately
  • Frequently loses place while reading or writing
  • Messy looking papers (e.g., letters colliding or not on the line and/or irregular spacing)
  • Difficulty navigating around center

  • Provide a copy of notes; reduce copying tasks; provide a notetaker
  • Provide tracking tools (e.g., ruler, text windows, visual guides); check work frequently
  • Allow the use of a computer or provide an alternative to writing assignments
  • Provide pictures/graphics for navigating center; provide verbal/auditory supports for instructions


  • Difficulty remembering directions given orally
  • Difficulty following multiple directives given at one time
  • Difficulty comprehending complex sentence structures or rapid speech
  • Appears confused often (e.g., says “what” a lot)​

  • Provide directions in writing and/or pictures/graphics
  • Limit the number of directions given at one time
  • Provide slow, simple oral instruction/directions; provide modeling with oral information
  • Frequently check for understanding

​Executive Functioning 
  • ​​Difficulty planning and organizing
  • Difficulty making decisions or problem-solving
  • Difficulty paying attention and remembering details
  • Difficulty adapting to changing situations

  • ​Provide checklists, calendars, color coded systems
  • Provide a buddy/mentor; provide choices rather than open-ended decisions
  • Allow the use of recording devices/apps; provide distraction free workspace
  • Provide adequate notice of anticipated changes and/or transitions​

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