Documentation and Verification
If you are requesting accommodations, you may need to provide third party documentation. Third party documentation is information that is provided in writing from a qualified professional that confirms the presence of a disability as well as evidence of how the disability impacts participation in University programs. It may consist of a letter from a medical provider (physician, optometrist/vision specialist, audiologist), or a psycho-educational or psychological evaluation. Medical records are not considered third party documentation. If you already have documentation, we encourage you to upload it with your application, or bring it with you for your Access Planning meeting. It is not necessary, however, for you to have submitted documentation to attend an Access Planning meeting; just be prepared to provide it if requested.
When documentation is requested, it should meet the criteria listed below. Documentation that is not on official letterhead, or does not provide a specific diagnosis (or diagnoses), will not be accepted.
Documentation should include:
- Credentials of the evaluator
- A diagnostic statement identifying the disability
- Description of the diagnostic methodology used
- Description of the current functional limitations
- Description of the expected progression or stability of the disability
- Description of current and past accommodations, services and/or medications
- Recommendations for accommodations and/or services
- Description of criteria for specific diagnosis
- Evaluation methods
- Dates of administration
- Specific results
- Clinical narrative
- One measure of aptitude (for a learning disability assessment)
- Measures of achievement in reading, math and written language (for a learning disability assessment)
Each qualified professional must have expertise in the areas for which he or she is rendering a diagnosis — including the differential diagnosis of the documented medical, physical or psychological condition — and follow established practices in the field. A qualified professional should be fully licensed and credentialed and have no personal relationship with the individual being evaluated.
Qualified professionals include:
- Optometrists/vision specialists
Please include recommendations for academic accommodations. Final determinations on academic accommodations/adjustments will be made by the Disability Center. Reasonable accommodations will be determined based upon documentation and through discussions with the student regarding functional limitations and the services and programs to be accessed.
Information that establishes a history of a disability throughout the student’s academic career is helpful in establishing the presence of a disability. Individual education plans (IEPs), Section 504 plans and summary-of-performance reports, while helpful, are not enough to establish the presence of a disability at the postsecondary level.
Prospective students and/or their treating professionals should contact the Disability Center if they have questions pertaining to these guidelines for documentation.
Definition of Disability
A disability is defined by the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment Act (ADAAA) of 2008 and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504, as a physical or mental condition that substantially limits major life activities. These include, but are not limited to, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating and working.
Complete the New Student Application and upload the documents to your files in your application so that the Disability Center can review. If you have already submitted the application and need to send documentation you can send the files directly to the Disability Center via email firstname.lastname@example.org or by fax 573-884-5002.