Documentation and Diagnosis Support
It is the responsibility of the student who has a disability and needs assistance in gaining equal access to services, benefits, and activities at the University to contact the Office of Disability Services with a completed and signed Confidential Accommodation Request Form along with documentation of the need for an accommodation. Complete the Confidential Accommodation Request Form here. As appropriate to the disability, documentation should follow these guidelines:
- This documentation must be issued by an appropriate professional such as a psychologist, psychiatrist, or physician. The credentials of the diagnosing professional should include information describing the certification, licensure, and/or professional training of the person conducting the evaluation.
- The documentation should include a diagnostic statement identifying the existence and impact of the disability, date of the current diagnostic evaluation, and date of the original diagnosis. The diagnostic systems used by the U.S. Department of Education, the State Department of Rehabilitative Services, or other State agencies and/or the current editions of either the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association (DSM) or the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems of the University Resources and Service 11 World Health Organization (ICD) are the recommended diagnostic taxonomies. The documentation should also explain how a disability limits an individual’s ability to benefit from a particular delivery system, instructional method, or evaluation criteria, or to perform certain duties or functions. It should address the accommodation that is necessary and how the accommodation might mitigate the effect of the disability.
- The documentation should include a description of the impact of treatments and/or medications, assistive devices, accommodations and/or assistive services in current use and their estimated effectiveness in ameliorating the impact of the disability. Significant side effects that may affect physical, perceptual, behavioral, or cognitive performance should also be noted.
- The documentation should provide a description of the diagnostic criteria and/or diagnostic test used. The description should include the specific results of diagnostic procedures, diagnostic tests utilized, and when administered. When available, both summary and specific test scores should be reported as standard scores and the norming population identified. When standard scores are not available, then the mean, standard deviation, and standard error of measurement are requested as appropriate to the construction of the test. Diagnostic methods used should be congruent with the disability and current professional practices within the field. Informal or non-standardized evaluations should be described in enough detail that a professional colleague could understand their role and significance in the diagnostic process.
- New documentation may be required if (i) an individual’s diagnosis changes, (ii) the individual requests an accommodation that is new or different from the accommodation(s) included in the documentation, (iii) the documentation submitted is not pertinent to and/or does not support the accommodation request, or (iv) the documentation is outdated (three years or more). If a Student Retention, Success and Disability Services Coordinator determines that additional information regarding an individual’s disability is needed, the individual will be contacted in a timely manner.
- The Student Retention, Success, and Disability Services and Accessibility Coordinator will verify the disability and collaborate with the student in identifying accommodations and ways to implement these accommodations. Accommodations may include, but are not limited to, auxiliary aids and other services.
- Students will be notified of approved accommodations in writing within two weeks.
- Requests for accommodations will be considered on an individual, case-by-case basis.