General Disability Documentation Guidelines
UNCSA is committed to providing access to all programs and services for eligible students with disabilities. In order to register for Accessibility Resources and ensure the provision of reasonable and appropriate accommodations, a student requesting accommodations or disability-related services must provide current documentation of his/her disability.
Documentation of a disability is evaluated on a case-by-case basis and approved through the office of Learning Resources at UNCSA. Documentation must validate the presence of a disability as noted under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disability Act and provide sufficient information for the provision of reasonable accommodations and services based upon the impact of the student’s disability in either the academic or living environment on campus.
Documentation submitted to the office of Learning Resources must provide the following information:
I. Evaluation is to be conducted by a qualified professional:
- Professionals conducting assessments, rendering diagnoses, offering clinical judgments specific to the disability and/or making recommendations for accommodations must be qualified to do so. Evaluator qualifications must include appropriate licensure/certification, as well as comprehensive training and relevant expertise in the area for which accommodations are being requested.
- A diagnosis of a physical/mental disability or health condition documented by a family member will not be accepted because of professional and ethical considerations, even when the family member is otherwise qualified by virtue of training and licensure or certification.
- Documentation is to be typed or printed on official letterhead with original signature signed by an evaluator qualified to make the diagnosis (include information about licensure or certification and area of specialization).
II. Documentation is to include a specific diagnosis
- Documentation is to include a diagnostic statement clearly identifying the disability.
- Documentation is to include diagnostic codes from the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM) or the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF).
- Documentation is to describe how the condition was diagnosed, noting the individual’s functional limitations due to the condition/disability, and detail the typical progression or prognosis of the condition.
III. Documentation is to be current
- Because the provision of reasonable accommodations and services is based upon the assessment of the current impact of the disability on a student in the academic or living environment, it is in the student’s best interest to provide recent and appropriate documentation.
- Requests for accommodations or services due to a condition that is fluctuating, is to be supported with documentation written within the past year.
IV. Documentation is to be comprehensive to substantiate the diagnosis
- Documentation is to include educational, developmental and medical history relevant to the disability for which accommodations are being requested.
- Documentation is to include a description of the diagnostic methodology used to document and diagnose the stated disability – information on the evaluation methods, procedures, tests, dates of administration, as well as clinical narratives, observations and specific results.
- Documentation is to include a description of the current functional limitations resulting from the disability – information on how the disabling condition currently impacts the individual in the environment for which accommodations are recommended. Information is to be thorough enough to demonstrate whether and how a major life activity is substantially limited by providing a clear sense of the severity, frequency, and pervasiveness of the condition.
- A description of the expected progression or stability of the disability is to be provided – information on expected changes in the functional impact of the disability over time and context. Information on the cyclical or episodic nature of the disability and known or suspected environmental triggers to episodes provides opportunities to anticipate and plan for varying functional impacts.
- A description of current and past accommodations, services and/or medications is to be provided – information on both current and past medications including side effects, auxiliary aids, assistive devices, support services, and accommodations, including their effectiveness in ameliorating functional impacts of the disability.
V. Each recommended accommodation is to include a rationale
- Documentation is to include the specific accommodations recommended and a rational - information on how the functional limitations related to the disability impact the individual in the environment for which accommodations are recommended.
- Documentation is to adequately support each of the recommended accommodations.
Contact:Jorja Waybrant, Coordinator of Learning Resources
Office: Teaching and Learning Center, 2nd floor of Library Annex