It is the college's policy to provide, on an individual basis, reasonable accommodations to students with disabilities that may affect their ability to fully participate in program or course activities or to meet course requirements. The Baker Center for Learning (BCL) staff members are available to work with students with physical, learning, psychological, or other disabilities to help them better understand the nature of their disability, to develop self-advocacy skills, and to determine appropriate accommodation plans.
To receive academic accommodations, students must identify the disability, provide adequate documentation of the disability by a qualified professional, and work with BCL personnel and classroom faculty to develop an appropriate and reasonable plan for accommodations. All information provided concerning a disability is confidential and is released only as allowed by law or with consent.
In order to evaluate requests, appropriate documentation must be provided directly to the Coordinator of Access and Equity Services. Documentation should not be sent to any other office within the college. These guidelines are intended to identify the minimum documentation criteria for consideration of a disability-related accommodation request.
Documentation serves as the basis for providing academic adjustments, accommodations, and auxiliary aids and services under the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. The documentation must both identify a physical or mental impairment, which substantially affects a life function, and supply information identifying current functional limitations that require accommodation in order to assure equal access to the college's programs and services.
The documentation must be prepared by a person, not a family member of the student, qualified by professional training and practice to diagnose and treat the impairment leading to the disability and typed or word processed onto letterhead of the practitioner or agency employing the practitioner. Handwritten notes on prescription pads are not acceptable.
As appropriate to the disability, documentation should include:
A diagnostic statement identifying the specific disability, including identification of how the condition substantially impairs a life function, the date of the current evaluation, and the date of original diagnosis. Psychiatric diagnoses, including ADD/ADHD, must include the DSM-IV diagnosis and a summary of current symptoms. Clear identification of a disability is necessary. Language indicating individual learning styles or difficulties or the possibility of a disability or diagnosis is not sufficient.
Diagnostic Criteria and Tests
A description of the diagnostic criteria or diagnostic tests used. All test and subtest scores must be included as standard scores and the norming population identified. Diagnosis of a Learning Disability must include comprehensive psychoeducational assessment of aptitude, academic achievement, and information processing. Brief measures and estimates based on selective subtests will generally not be sufficient. Where appropriate and relevant, psychoeducational or neuropsychological testing measures may also be required to support requests based on limitations of cognitive or perceptual functioning, e.g., AD/HD, psychiatric, and some medical disabilities. Testing must be of sufficient recency to allow determination of the current impact of the disability in a College environment.
A description of the functional impact of the disability. The current functional impact on physical, perceptual, and cognitive functioning should be described.
Currently prescribed treatments, medications, assistive devices, and service should be described. Description should include all currently in use and their estimated effectiveness in ameliorating the impact of the disability. Significant side effects that may affect physical, perceptual, or cognitive functioning should be identified and described.
Recommendations for accommodations, academic adjustments, and auxiliary aids or services should be supported by objective evidence of a substantial limitation to learning in a postsecondary environment. Prior use of accommodations and level of benefit should be identified. If no accommodations have been used in the past, a rationale for current use should be included.
Secondary school Individual Education Plans (IEPs) are not sufficient by themselves as documentation at the postsecondary level. Depending on the information contained, an IEP may provide a portion of the necessary documentation and may serve to identify previously utilized accommodations.
Disability documentation is considered confidential information and does not become part of a student's permanent educational record. In accordance with federal and state law, the college shall maintain confidentiality of student records. All documentation and records will be maintained in the Office of the Coordinator of Tutoring and Accommodation Services.
Documentation and questions should be addressed to:
Coordinator of Access and Equity Services
607.844.8222, Ext. 4283