Guidelines for Documentation of Disability

The Office of Disability Services requires self-identified students to submit disability-related documentation from the appropriate licensed professional both to verify a self-identified student as having a disability and to determine reasonable disability related accommodations. The student is responsible for any costs associated with obtaining appropriate documentation of disability. If documentation submitted is deemed inadequate or incomplete to determine the extent of the disability and/or reasonable accommodations, additional documentation may be requested at the discretion of the Office of Disability Services. The student is also responsible for any costs associated with obtaining additional documentation.

The following should be considered when submitting documentation:

  • Documentation must be from a licensed professional, qualified in the appropriate specialty area for which accommodations are being requested. Documentation for learning disabilities or AD/HD must include submission of raw test score data which may be needed if the University seeks a second professional opinion.
  • Documentation must be less than three years old. However, the University may use discretion in the following cases: (a) documentation greater than three years old when it involves a permanent condition, or (b) conditions that will warrant more current documentation and/or more frequent updates in order to reflect a student’s level of functioning most accurately.
  • Documentation must include specific diagnostic information (e.g., DSM-IV multiaxial diagnosis, ICD diagnosis).
  • Documentation must provide clear explanations of the current impact of disability on the student’s ability to function in an academic environment. All functional limitations in such an environment must be clearly stated.
  • Documentation must clearly state the reasonable accommodations being requested. In addition, the documentation must provide a clear rationale for each accommodation being requested. All accommodations are determined based upon the impact of disability on a student’s academic performance.
  • Documentation, as appropriate, must include investigation and discussion of the possibility of dual diagnoses, behavioral, neurological, and/or personality disorders, which may confound a diagnosis.
  • As indicated, documentation should discuss the impact of medication on the student’s ability to function in an academic environment.
  • As indicated, documentation should discuss the impact of other treatments on the student’s ability to function in an academic environment.
  • In some circumstances it may be warranted to provide accommodations on a provisional basis; for example, if adequate documentation has not been received and it has been established that a student has a disability but more current information on functioning is needed. Such decisions are made at the discretion of the Office of Academic Services on a case-by-case basis.