Disability Documentation Requirements

Disability Documentation Requirements

In order to provide reasonable and appropriate academic accommodations to those students at the College who have disabilities, the Disability Services office requires documentation which shows the current disability and its impact on academic functioning. Therefore, the documentation the student provides must include the following information:

  • Documentation must be current. The determination of what is current documentation depends on the nature of the disability. However, in most cases documentation should be within the last three years. Disability Services reserves the right to make appropriate modifications to this time frame.
  • The name, title, and professional credentials of the evaluator that include information about license or certification, as well as, area of specialization, employment, and state in which the individual practices. Professionals conducting the evaluation/assessment must be qualified to do so, and it is essential that they have experience working with adolescent/adult populations. Documentation must be provided by a provider who is NOT a family member.
  • Reports must be on letterhead, typed, dated, and have the original signature of the evaluator. Reports must be written in English or translated into English by a qualified translator.
  • Reports need to include the names of any standardized tests administered, the scores derived from these tests and a discussion of the data that clearly indicates the presence of a disability. Disability Services reserves the right to determine which tests are acceptable for diagnosing the disability. Standardized tests must be based on adult norms.
  • The report must clearly state the specific diagnosis of the disability. Terms such as "suggest" or "is indicative of" are not acceptable.
  • The evaluator must describe the impact of the diagnosed disability on a specific major life function/activity (especially as it relates to academic performance).
  • The diagnostic report should include specific recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations and a detailed explanation of the rationale for each recommended accommodation as related to the specific functional limitations.
  • If medications are taken, these should be listed as well as their potential side effects.
  • If symptoms involve cognitive recall (memory), appropriate testing needs to be conducted. Testing for specific learning disabilities may be appropriate.
  • A doctor's prescription pad note or a school plan such as an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) or 504 Plan is not sufficient documentation in and of itself but can be included as part of a more comprehensive evaluative report.

It must be understood that evaluation reports themselves do not automatically qualify a student for registration with Disability Services. All of the items listed above must clearly show the presence of a disabling condition and clearly justify the need for reasonable accommodations. Disability Services will make the final decision as to whether reasonable and appropriate accommodations are needed and can be provided to the student.

Additional Documentation Requirements for:

  • Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Report from an audiologist or otolaryngologist that includes the following:
    • Results of an audiogram showing the degree of hearing loss
    • The type of hearing loss (conductive or sensorineural)
    • Whether the hearing loss is temporary or permanent, and if it is stable or progressive
    • Whether the condition is mitigated by hearing aids or medication
    • A description of the functional limitation(s) caused by the disability
    • Recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations

       

  • Physical Disability and/or Health-Related Impairment Letter or report from a physician in an appropriate medical specialization that includes the following:
    • The specific medical condition which causes the disability
    • Whether the condition is temporary or permanent, and if it is stable or progressive
    • Information about current prescribed medications used to treat the disability and possible side effects
    • A description of the functional limitation(s) caused by the disability
    • Recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations
  • Speech Impairment Report or letter from a speech pathologist or physician that includes the following:
    • The specific disabling condition
    • Whether the condition is temporary or permanent, and if it is stable or progressive
    • A description of the functional limitation(s) caused by the disability
    • Recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations
  • Visual Impairment Report or letter from an ophthalmologist or optometrist that includes the following:
    • The specific medical condition which causes the visual impairment
    • The degree of visual acuity, including with corrective lenses
    • The extent of the visual fields
    • Whether the condition is temporary or permanent, and if it is stable or progressive
    • Whether the condition is mitigated by corrective lenses or medication
    • A description of the functional limitation(s) caused by the disability
    • Recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations including any
    • visual aids
  • ADHD/ADD Report from a psychologist or psychiatrist that includes the following:
    • Clear statement of ADHD with the DSM-IV diagnosis
    • A description of the symptoms which meet the criteria for the diagnosis
    • A summary of the assessment procedures and evaluation instruments which were used to make the diagnosis
    • Information about current prescribed medications used to treat the disability and possible side effects
    • A description of the functional limitation(s) caused by the disability
    • Recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations
  • Specific Learning Disabilities A comprehensive psycho-educational assessment from a psychologist or learning disabilities specialist that includes the following: NOTE: All of these tests must be based on adult norms.
    • Clear statement of the specific learning disability with the DSM-IV diagnosis
    • A test used to measure intellectual ability, including scores and subtest scores
      • Acceptable IQ tests:
        • Kaufman Adolescent and Adult Intelligence Test
        • Stanford Binet 4th Edition
        • Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale - III (WAIS-III)
        • Woodcock-Johnson III General Intellectual Ability (GIA)
      • Not acceptable:
        • Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test (KBIT)
        • Slosson Intelligence Test
        • Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence (WASI)
        • Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children - III (WISC-III)
    • A test used to measure academic achievement, including scores and subtest scores
      • Acceptable achievement tests:
        • Nelson-Denny Reading Test
        • Scholastic Abilities Test for Adults (SATA)
        • Wechsler Individual Achievement Test - II (WIAT-II)
        • Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement
        • Woodcock Reading Mastery Tests - Revised
      • Not acceptable:
        • Wide Range Achievement Test - 3 (WRAT-3)
    • A test used to measure processing ability, including scores and subtest scores
      • Acceptable processing tests:
        • Detroit Tests of Learning Aptitude - Adult
        • Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Cognitive Abilities
    • Profile of academic strengths and weaknesses and how these relate to the academic limitation(s)
    • Clinical summary
    • Recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations
  • Psychological and Psychiatric Disability Psychological or neuropsychological evaluation or report from a psychiatrist or licensed psychologist that includes the following:
    • Clear statement of the condition with the DSM-IV diagnosis
    • A description of the symptoms which meet the criteria for the diagnosis
    • A summary of the assessment procedures and evaluation instruments which were used to make the diagnosis
    • Information about current prescribed medications used to treat the disability and possible side effects
    • A description of the functional limitation(s) caused by the disability
    • Recommendations for reasonable academic accommodations