Documentation Guidelines

Student Disability Services works with students with disabilities to obtain documentation which assists in determining eligibility for accommodations. Eligibility for reasonable and appropriate accommodations is based on current, comprehensive documentation of disability. It is the student’s responsibility to obtain and provide this information in a timely manner.

By sending the most comprehensive information possible, you will help us to avoid delays in the processing of your documentation. Documentation should provide a basic understanding of the individual’s disability and enough information to anticipate how the current impact of the disability is expected to interact with the University’s structure of courses, testing methods, program requirements, etc.  Simply providing documentation does not ensure students will be eligible. Documentation will be used to determine what is reasonable and appropriate for the individual, including history of accommodations and services used in the past.

Student Disability Services prefers documentation be provided in English. Documentation received in a language other than English may delay the accommodation process and may require third party translation. Please contact our office as early as possible for a case by case consultation regarding non-English documentation. 

What are accommodations?

Accommodations are adaptations and changes made to elements of a student's postsecondary program that help to compensate for the student's impairment(s) and provide equal access to students with disabilities. Here are the basics:

  • Any student with a documented disability may be eligible to receive accommodations and services from Student Disability Services
  • The purpose of accommodations are to reduce or eliminate any disadvantages that may exist because of an individual's disability
  • Accommodations are not a guarantee for success, but rather seek to promote non-discrimination and equal access opportunities
  • Accommodations are not student preferences; they are determined through an established review process based on documentation received regarding the student's disability
  • The law does not require institutions to waive specific courses or academic requirements considered essential to a particular program or degree. Rather, they are mandated to modify existing requirements on a case-by-case basis in order to ensure that individuals are not discriminated against on the basis of their disability

For more specific information about accommodations see Accommodations for Students.

A student who has a temporary illness (e.g. cold or flu), or is recovering from surgery not based on a long-term condition would not be considered to have a disability.