General Guidelines for Documentation - Disability Services | Franciscan University of Steubenville
  • General Guidelines for Documentation

    Student Academic Support Services (SASS) provides academic services and accommodations for students with diagnosed disabilities. The documentation provided by the student regarding the disability diagnosis must demonstrate a disability covered under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990/ADA Amendment Act of 2008. The ADA defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

    SASS will review and consider all pieces of documentation submitted. Documentation will assist SASS in understanding how the disability impacts the student in an academic setting and the current impact of the disability as it relates to the accommodations requested.

    Documentation must be from a qualified professional who is licensed or certified to diagnose the disability in question. All tests used to document eligibility must be technically sound, standardized, and normed on the adult scale. All documentation should be recent enough to reflect the student's current level of functioning and contain, at a minimum, the following:

    • A specific diagnostic statement identifying the disability including severity and date of current diagnostic evaluation.
    • Specific findings that support this diagnosis including relevant history, tests administered, test results, and interpretation of those test results.
    • Information concerning the impact of the disability on the educational setting including:
      • a description of the functional limitations due to the disability,
      • treatment plan and accommodation services currently prescribed or in use,
      • expected progression or stability of disability over time.
    • The documentation should be on letterhead, typed, dated, signed, and include the evaluator's name, address, telephone number, and professional credentials.

    To help ensure appropriate documentation details are provided, the student is encouraged to have his/her attending medical professional complete the appropriate Disability Verification Form provided by SASS. Forms based upon specific disabilities are available in the Student Academic Support Services Office and on the FUS website at

    Please note that while Individual Educational Plans (IEPs) and 504 Plans are valuable resources of information, these do not include vital diagnostic information and cannot be used as sole documentation of a disability.

    SASS reserves the right to request additional documentation in order to support specific accommodations. If additional information is needed, SASS may determine that it is appropriate to provide temporary accommodations. Temporary accommodations will be determined based on the information that has been provided and are effective for only one semester.


    In addition to the documentation you provide, you are also encouraged to send a letter from the Institution you previously attended that includes the timeframe in which you were provided services and the accommodations used.

    Once documentation is submitted, it will be reviewed in the order in which it was received. Therefore, it is recommended that documentation be submitted well in advance of any accommodation related needs.

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