Guidelines for Documentation of Psychological Disability

Guidelines for Documentation of a Psychological Disability

To qualify for services, a student must provide documentation of a diagnosed psychological disability. The guidelines that follow are provided to assure that evaluation reports are appropriate to determine eligibility and to support requests for reasonable accommodations.

Practioners Who Can Provide a Diagnosis

Licensed Psychologists, Licensed Clinical Psychologists, Licensed Professional Counselor-Mental Health, Psychiatrists and other relevantly trained medical personnel.

Recency of Documentation

Because Psychological Disabilities may manifest themselves differently as people age, it is recommended that a diagnosis and description of functional limitations be made that describes the current impact of the disability.

Contents of Documentation

  1. A specific diagnosis that conforms to current DSM criteria for a specific psychological disorder. The diagnosis should also list the specific symptoms and severity of symptoms that are currently present.
  2. Current functional limitations resulting from the specific psychological disorder. These may include but are not limited to:
    1. Cognitive functioning
    2. Behavioral functioning
    3. Ability to learn
    4. Social functioning
  3. Evidence to support the functional limitations statements made in #2. This may include but is not limited to:
    1. Teacher observation
    2. Clinical observation/interview
    3. Standardized checklists or scales of emotional functioning
  4. Medical information relating to the student's needs, including the impact of medication on the student's ability to meet the demands of the postsecondary environment. This may include the current mediation regimen and side effects (if relevant).
  5. Relevant information regarding current treatment.
  6. Recommended Accommodations. All accommodations should be directly related to functional limitations listed in #2. The rationale for each recommendation should be contained in #3 above.
  7. Recommendations for other supports, strategies or services that may benefit the individual in a higher education environment.
  8. Other pertinent diagnoses or recommendations for other evaluations that may be needed.

This is not intended to be an exhaustive list or to restrict assessment in other pertinent areas. Acceptable alternative evaluations may be determined by the Center for Academic Excellence.

Students seeking qualified professionals for assessments may find referral sources from disability services staff at a college or university, or from a physician.

All documentation is confidential and should be sent to:

Student Accessibility Services
Center for Academic Excellence
Franklin Pierce University
40 University Drive
Rindge, NH 03461
Phone: 603-899-4107 
Fax: 603-899-4395


Student Accessibility Services

Center for Academic Excellence(603) 899-4107

Office Hours

Mon - Fri:
8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.