Documentation Policies and Procedures

Checklist

Ensure that:

  • Documentation standards and procedures are readily available (e.g., policy manuals, student and employee handbooks/catalogs, on the website when common terms are searched, etc.);
  • Clear notice is provided regarding where and how to make a request for academic adjustments, auxiliary aids and services including contact information for the person or office to whom a student may make a request;
  • There is a process for determining whether a requested academic adjustment, auxiliary aid and/or service would constitute a fundamental alteration or would modify an essential academic requirement and/or related licensing requirement;
  • For negative determinations, there is a written analysis process which outlines for each requested accommodation, the relevant information within the submission (supporting as well as in opposition), the specific reasons for requesting additional documentation or rejecting the request, and the reasons for recommending any alternative(s).

Documentation Policies and Procedures

Action Steps

  • Upon receipt of documentation, ensure that the submission has been prepared by an appropriate professional (medical doctor, psychologist, or other qualified diagnostician), that it includes: a diagnosis of current disability or medical condition, date of diagnosis, method used to arrive at the diagnosis, the credentials of the diagnosing professional, information regarding how the condition/disability impacts a major life activity, as well as, the student’s participation in educational activities and his/her academic performance.
  • Analyze all relevant information including a) medical, psychological or educational assessments; b) the history of accommodation; c) academic performance with and without accommodation; d) student’s statements regarding the impact of functional limitations and e) any other information relevant to the question of the need for academic adjustments, auxiliary aids and services.
  • If there is a dispute or impasse regarding the opinions of qualified medical professionals or evaluators with respect to the medical diagnosis, the functional limitations, need for academic adjustments, auxiliary aids or services and/or the nature of the accommodations that should be provided an objective third-party should be asked to review the documentation and to conduct an evaluation, if necessary.

Documentation Policies and Procedures

Compliance Mistakes

  • Failing to make a specific decision regarding each accommodation request;
  • Not engaging the student at all substantive stages of the process;
  • Failing to follow the published process and procedures;
  • Identifying an alternative accommodation(s)without engaging the student in a discussion regarding the appropriateness of and/or need for the substitution and giving him/her an opportunity to provide additional information to support their choice or preferred academic adjustment, auxiliary aid or service.