Students requesting disability services are encouraged to contact the Disability Services Office at least thirty (30) days prior to the beginning of the semester. The student seeking services is responsible for providing appropriate verification material to support requested services. The student should provide diagnostic, prognostic, and prescriptive information from an approved professional in order to receive services. The Disability Services director will review verification material once it has been received and combine it with interview information received from the student to decide upon appropriate accommodation.
Federal Law requires that students with disabilities be considered on an individual, case-by-case basis. Criteria for the source, scope and content of the documentation differs by disability type. Quality disability documentation should contain the following elements:
- The evaluator's name, address, telephone number (in the event our department needs to contact the evaluator), and professional credential relevant to the diagnosis (i.e. MD, Ph.D. LSSP, etc).
- A clear diagnostic statement identifying the disability, including level of severity.
- A description of the diagnostic methodology used. Quality documentation includes a description of the diagnostic criteria, evaluation methods, procedures, tests and dates of administration, as well as a clinical narrative, observation, and specific test results.
- A description of the student’s current functional limitations or symptoms as they are directly related to the diagnostic statement and an explanation of why they necessitate any accommodations.
- A description of the expected progression or stability of the disability.
- A description of current and past accommodations, services and/or medications.
- If provided, any recommendations for accommodations, adaptive devices, assistive services, compensatory strategies, and/or collateral support services included must be supported by the documentation.
- The documentation must be on letterhead, typed, dated, and signed
In order for us to receive adequate documentation and not have a delay in getting the student started in using our services, please provide us with the following information on your letterhead:
- Specific diagnosis and date of diagnosis.
- Please briefly describe your relevant history of clinical contact and the date of your last visit with this person.
- What specific symptoms does this person experience and to what severity (mild or moderate to severe and profound)?
- Describe the duration and prognosis of the disability.
- What are the functional limitations of the disability that will substantially impact this person in a college or university environment? [Functional limitations refer to the manifestations of the disability that impede the individual's ability to function as compared to the average person. A college environment would include activities such as taking classes, the amount of credits [12 hrs. = full time], studying, taking exams, getting around campus, using a laptop computer, interacting with faculty and students, etc.]
- Please include the results of the clinical tests that were performed to support your diagnosis or other possible causes for the symptoms. Examples of the types of test information we are looking for include but are not limited to visual, hearing, neurological, psycho-educational, strength and mobility, psychological, and attention.
- What medications are prescribed and what are some of the side effects from the medication that will impact this person in a university environment? Please list any recommended treatment, medical, or rehabilitative devices that were prescribed that may or may not mitigate the condition, disability, or the symptoms.
- Signature, professional title(s), credentials/licensure (if applicable), and contact information (address, telephone number, and email).
Note: The age of the documentation is a critical factor in helping us determine the current functioning of an individual. Some disabilities require more up-to-date documentation (e.g. chronic medical, psychological, traumatic brain injury, etc). Please send us the most recent documentation you have that shows the current impact of the disability. If the documentation provided is not sufficient, then we will contact the student to obtain the necessary documentation. Please remember the student bears all costs associated with obtaining the documentation.
Once eligibility has been determined by the Disability Services counselor and accommodation(s) decided upon, a Disability Services Request is completed and provided to the student. The Disability Services Request is completed each succeeding semester that the student requests disability support services. The student must request disability support services at least 14 days prior to the beginning of each succeeding semester to assure accommodation(s) are received the first week of class. A copy of the student's registration must accompany the request for services. The student should provide the Disability Services Request letter to the appropriate faculty member. The student should discuss with the faculty member relevant information that will assist in providing the approved accommodation(s). The faculty member will assure that the student receives the approved accommodation(s). The Disability Services counselor is available to the student and faculty member for consultation.