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Documentation Guidelines

About Documentation

It is the responsibility of the student to provide information which verifies that the student's condition meets the definition of a disability as defined by applicable laws (i.e., Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008). Federal Law requires that requests for services for student with disabilities be considered on an individual, case-by-case basis.

Documentation Guidelines

Sources of information used for determining a disability and/or accommodations may include a student’s self-report, direct observation and interaction with the student, and/or documentation from qualified evaluators or professionals.

Student Self-Report:

Students should complete the Accommodation Request Form which provides students an opportunity to describe their disability and accommodations they are hoping to receive. Students may supplement the Accommodation Request Form with an additional narrative by providing a letter that further describes their disability and/or accommodations they are requesting. Students may consider including information about their experiences related to their disability, barriers faced, and/or previous accommodations (effective or ineffective).

Documentation:

Disability related documentation should provide information on the functional impact of the disability so that effective accommodations can be identified. Criteria for the source, scope and content of documentation differs by disability type. Documentation may include assessments, reports, and/or letters from qualified evaluators, professionals, or institutions. Common sources of documentation are health care providers, psychologists, diagnosticians, and/or information from a previous school (e.g., accommodation agreements/letters, 504, IEP, or ARD documents).

Suggested Documentation Elements:

  1. Typed on letterhead, dated, and signed by a qualified professional.
  2. Diagnostic Statement with any related diagnostic methodology (diagnostic criteria and/or procedures).
  3. Functional limitations or symptoms. (Limitations inform which accommodations are appropriate.)
  4. Severity and/or expected progression.
  5. Current medication(s) and any related side-effects.
  6. Current and/or past accommodations.
  7. Any recommended accommodations.

When and How to Submit Documentation

Disability Services will consider all relevant information provided in documentation. Documentation will be reviewed on an individual, case-by-case basis.  Please submit your information at least 2-3 weeks prior to the date that services are requested. If you have any questions about these documentation guidelines, please contact Disability Services at (979) 845-1637.

The Accommodation Request Form and all other information may be submitted in person or delivered via mail at the following address. Documentation may also be faxed to (979) 458-1214. Documentation will not be accepted through e-mail.

Disability Services
Texas A&M University
Attn: Documentation Coordinator
701 West Campus Blvd; 1224 TAMU 
College Station, TX 77843-1224
FAX: (979) 458-1214

How to Obtain Documentation

The professional making the diagnosis of a disability should be an appropriately trained evaluator, such as a physician, psychologist, psychiatrist, or educational diagnostician.  For example, an audiologist would diagnose a hearing impairment; a psychiatrist, psychologist, or clinical social worker would diagnose a psychological disability.  Documentation from a family member or family friend is not acceptable.

DS provides a one page handout, "Guidelines for Documentation" (click for forms page), that can be printed out and provided to your physician and/or evaluator.  If you have any questions about documentation that is requested, please feel free to contact an Access Coordinator at (979) 845-1637.

DS reserves the right to request additional information or evaluation.  However, information regarding resources to use in obtaining an evaluation is available from our office.  We also maintain a list of local evaluators.