A qualified professional with training and experience relevant to the diagnosed disability must complete the documentation provided. Physical disabilities are most often verified by physicians -- psychological and emotional disabilities by psychologists or psychiatrists, and learning disabilities by psychologists or educational diagnosticians. This professional should be an impartial individual who is not a family member of the student.
All costs incurred in securing documentation are at the expense of the student seeking accommodations.
The provision of all reasonable accommodations and services is based upon assessment of the impact of the student’s disabilities on his or her academic performance at a given time in a student’s life. Therefore, it is in the student’s best interest to provide recent and appropriate documentation relevant to the student’s learning environment. For disabilities that may change substantially with time, such as learning or psychological disabilities, evaluations should be recent. In order to demonstrate the current impact of the disability and to identify appropriate accommodations, learning disability documentation less than three years old is required, and documentation of psychological disabilities may need to be even more recent. For other disabilities, documentation that is older than three years may be considered if the diagnosis is not affected by maturation, time or coping strategies.
The Director of Student Support Services may request additional information or updated evaluations, at the student’s expense, if necessary to make a decision about eligibility or appropriate accommodations. The Director of Student Support Services does not conduct disability evaluations but may refer students to qualified off-campus professionals who do.
All documentation must be submitted in writing. The documentation should be submitted on the professional’s letterhead and be dated and signed. The documentation must be comprehensive, including (when appropriate) history, diagnostic interviews, test results (including standardized test scores when available), differential diagnosis and details regarding the student’s functional limitations. Strengths, weaknesses and deficits should be specifically discussed. Clear documentation of deficit areas is necessary in order for colleges to provide appropriate accommodations.
Professionals supplying documentation must specify what accommodations are being requested and how the lack of these accommodations would substantially limit one or more major life activity of the student.