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McBurney Disability Resource Center

Psychiatric Disabilities

Disability Documentation

Students requesting accommodations on the basis of a psychiatric disability must provide the current documentation from a licensed psychologist, psychiatrist, or licensed clinical social worker, which must include:

  • General Disability Assessment Form
  • A specific, current psychiatric diagnosis as per the DSM-IV which indicates the nature, frequency and severity of the symptoms upon which the diagnosis was predicated. A diagnosis without an explicit listing of current symptoms is not sufficient. Primary and secondary Axis I and Axis II diagnoses are required.
  • Evidence of current impairment. An assessment of the individual's presenting symptoms and evidence of current behaviors that significantly impair functioning must be provided. In an academic setting, functional impairment is most often expressed in poor academic performance across a variety of academic tasks.
  • Evidence is needed to determine the current impact of the disorder on the individual's ability to function in an academic setting and to establish eligibility for classroom accommodations including alternative testing, notetakers and/or alternative media (taped books electronic text).
  • Prescribed medications, dosages and schedules which may influence the types of accommodations provided.
  • A clinical summary which: (a) indicates the substantial limitations to major life activities posed by the psychiatric disability, (b) describes the extent to which these limitations would impact the academic context for which accommodations are being requested, (c) suggests how the specific effects of the psychiatric disability may be accommodated, and (d.) states how the effects of the psychiatric disability are mediated by the recommended accommodations.