- Learning Disabilities and AD/HD Documentation Guidelines
- Learning Disabilities Support and Accommodations
- Psychological Disability Documentation Guidelines
Learning Disabilities and AD/HD Documentation Guidelines
Students seeking accommodations for learning disabilities need to provide thorough psycho-educational assessment documentation, which is current (within the last three years) and provides a specific diagnosis. Assessment providers include licensed psychologists, neurologists experienced in educational problems, and learning disabilities specialists with credentials allowing the interpretation of the required assessment instruments.
Diagnostic testing should be comprehensive and include a test from each category:
- Aptitude (for example: WAIS-Revision 3)
- Achievement (Woodcock Johnson-Revised: Tests of Achievement)
- Information processing (Woodcock Johnson Revised: Tests of Cognitive Ability; Wechsler Memory Scales)
The report should include:
- The date of the examination, the clinician's name, title, license number, telephone number, and address.
- A summary of educational, medical, and family histories, along with behavioral observations.
- A summary of the results of all instruments used in the assessment, including standard scores, subtest scores, percentiles, and a detailed interpretation of the results, including strengths and weaknesses.
- Clearly described intracognitive and/or aptitude-achievement discrepancies and the clinician's rationale for the diagnosis.
- A statement of how the learning disability substantially interferes with the student's educational progress, along with recommendations for appropriate accommodations.
Students with documented learning disabilities will meet with the Director of Educational Support Services to plan how best to work toward a successful semester. Academic accommodations will be designed to meet a student's disability-related needs without fundamentally altering the nature of the instructional program. The most useful accommodations will address the student's ability to learn, although some accommodations may also modify the particular ways in which students demonstrate their mastery of course material. Instructors must be satisfied that such accommodations do not lower the teaching standards of the College.
The key to success at Saint Joseph's College for students with learning disabilities is the relationship built between the student and the professors and between the student and the Director of Educational Support Services. The Director of Educational Support Services can be very useful in planning learning strategies and aiding the student to cope with the frustrations of college life. Ultimately it is the student's own perseverance, informed by proven study methods, that will make the largest contribution to success in college classes.
Learning Disabilities Support and Accommodations
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines a person with a disability, in part, as "one who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities," and thus protects such individuals from discrimination. Saint Joseph's College strives to meet the needs of all students, providing academic services in accordance with ADA guidelines.
The process is as follows:
- Upon receiving a request for disability accommodation, Educational Support Services will review learning disability certification. Provision of accommodations is contingent upon meeting national guidelines. Requirements for documentation are consistent with those of the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Please click on the appropriate link provided below to review documentation guidelines.
You can find more information on how to assist students with learning disabilities on the following Web sites:
- Learning Disability Association of Indiana
- Learning Disabilities Association of America
- Dyslexia at College
Psychological Disability Documentation Guidelines
SJC requires individuals seeking accommodations for a psychological or psychiatric disability to follow these guidelines in order for the College to make sound decisions and provide appropriate services:
- To provide accommodations to students with psychological or psychiatric disabilities, the College requires that a student provide verification of his/her disability prior to or at the time that services are requested.
- A comprehensive written evaluation must have been completed within the past six months. Telephone calls and/or brief letters that document past or ongoing treatment are not sufficient. Evaluators should have experience with a college-age population. Appropriate evaluators include psychologists, psychiatrists, and other licensed mental health professionals. The comprehensive evaluation should include the following:
- A dated multi-axial DSM-IV diagnosis.
- Psychological testing results used to support the diagnosis.
- A summary of treatment (as it relates to the disability and the need for accommodations).
- Current psychotropic medications (including dosage).
- An evaluation of ability to function in a demanding college environment that requires independent, social functioning.
- Recommendations for continued treatment.
- Recommendations for academic and other accommodations. Each recommended accommodation should include a detailed explanation of its relevance to the disability that is diagnosed. The evaluator should also indicate the level at which the individual is currently functioning with the benefit of treatment.
- The time period for which academic accommodations are recommended.
- A student may be asked to meet with the Director of Educational Support Services to clarify information contained in the above described evaluation.
- Academic accommodations for students with psychological disabilities are usually granted for an academic semester.
- Students must authorize the release of a written report containing all of the above information to the Director of Educational Support Services before consideration of academic accommodations can begin.