Eligibility for Services and Documentation Guidelines

Students must meet the academic standards set for admission into Niagara University. Once admitted to Niagara, students are responsible for disclosing and documenting disability to Disability Services in order to receive accommodations/services.

Documentation of disability must include a description of the current functional limitations the individual is likely to have at college due to his/her disability in order to assist Disability Services in determining eligibility for disability accommodation at Niagara University. Current and comprehensive disability documentation from a qualified provider (unrelated to the student) who is treating, or assessed, the specific disability for which accommodations are being requested is required to assist with the provision of appropriate accommodations and auxiliary aids. Providers can either complete the "Disability Verification" form for this purpose or summarize the requested information in writing on professional letterhead.

Eligibility for reasonable and appropriate accommodations will be determined on a case-by-case/course-by-course basis by the Coordinator of Disability Services.

General Documentation Guidelines:

The following guidelines are provided in the interest of ensuring that documentation is appropriate to verify eligibility of a disability AND supports requests for reasonable accommodations, adjustments, and auxiliary aids and services on the basis of that disability. Students are responsible for the costs associated with obtaining documentation.

  1. Documentation of disability should be provided in writing, be comprehensive, and include the following information (Disability Verification form):
    • Clear and specific evidence of a disability: the functional limitations related to the diagnosis and medical treatment of which affect the student's current level of functioning in the university environment.
    • In some cases, assessment procedures and evaluation instruments, including all test scores and sub-scores or test results, used to make the diagnosis. See information below regarding specific documentation requirements for various types of disabilities.
    • In some cases, background information about the student's educational, medical, and family histories that relate to the disability.
    • Descriptions/suggestions of reasonable accommodations that have been or might be appropriate at the postsecondary level are encouraged. Explicit connections must be made between any recommended accommodations and services AND the individual's functional limitation(s) related to the diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of the condition including medication.
  2. Documentation for eligibility should be current, preferably within the last three years. It is in a student's best interest to provide recent and relevant documentation because the provision of all reasonable accommodations and services is based upon assessment of the current impact of the student's disability on his/her academic performance.
  3. Professionals conducting assessment and rendering diagnoses of a disability must be qualified to do so. Diagnostic reports should include the names, titles, and professional credentials (e.g., licensed psychologist) of the evaluators as well as the dates(s) of testing. Experience in working with an adult population is essential. The diagnostician must be impartial and not a family member.

Specific Documentation Guidelines Learning Disabilities:

Most recent testing results and scores and the clinical narrative. Minimally, domains that should be assessed should include (but not be limited to):

  1. Aptitude The Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale - Revised (WAIS-R), Woodcock-Johnson Psychoeducational Battery-Revised: Tests of Cognitive Ability, and the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale are acceptable.
  2. Achievement. Assessment of current levels of functioning in reading, mathematics and written language are required. Tests may include the Woodcock-Johnson Psychoeducational Battery - Revised: Tests of Achievement, Wechsler Individual Achievement Test (WIAT), Stanford Test of Academic Skills (TASK), and the Scholastic Abilities Test for Adults (SATA). Specific achievement tests such as the Test of Written Language - 2 (TOWL-2), Woodcock Reading Mastery Tests - Revised, the Stanford Diagnostic Mathematics Test, and the Nelson-Denny Reading Test are also acceptable.
  3. Information Processing. Specific areas of information processing (e.g., short- and long-term memory; sequential memory; auditory and visual perception/processing; processing speed) should be assessed. Information from subtests on the WAIS-R or clusters on the Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Cognitive Ability as well as other suitable instruments (e.g., Detroit Tests of Learning Aptitude-III) may be used to address these areas.

NOTE: This is not intended to be an exhaustive list or to restrict assessment in other pertinent and helpful areas such as vocational interests and aptitudes.

ADHD/ADD

History of ADHD/ADD, means of diagnosis, and evaluation of current impact.

Psychological, Psychiatric or Emotional Disabilities

Presenting symptoms and treatment. Prognosis, if known.

Deaf/Hearing Impairment

Audiogram and performance section of psychological evaluation if available.

Blind/Visual Impairment

Visual acuity, field of vision, and, if applicable, CBVH certification number.