Supporting Documentation Guidance

The AEC engages in an individualized, interactive process to assess requests for reasonable accommodations on the basis of disability. Accommodations are determined by AEC based on a combination of the student’s self-report, supporting documentation of disability, and AEC staff’s professional judgment. Students can initiate the interactive process by requesting an appointment with an AEC access advisor.

Supporting documentation must be provided by an appropriate qualified professional such as a treating or diagnosing health or mental health professional. Qualified professionals are licensed, follow established practices in the field, and may include physicians, psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, registered nurses, therapists, or physician assistants. All documentation will be evaluated on a case‐by‐case basis.

Documentation should be on official letterhead and include the following information:

  • The name, title, licensing state(s) and number, address, area of specialization, and signature of the qualified, diagnosing clinician/health care professional, and date
  • The student’s name
  • Medical/clinical diagnosis(es) as listed in the DSM-5 or ICD-10
  • Explanation and/or basis for diagnosis(es) (tests, clinical interview, observations, history, differential diagnosis)
  • Description of the functional limitations the student experiences related to the disability(ies).
  • If making recommendations for specific accommodations: Justification for each recommended accommodation and the direct relationship to the functional limitations must be produced.

The following documentation may not be accepted:

  • Documentation completed by a family member
  • Documentation based on a fully online evaluation which did not involve direct contact with a qualified professional
  • Health Summary
  • Verification of medication/prescription

Students who do not have supporting documentation are still welcome to meet with an AEC access advisor to discuss their disability-related experiences and needs. AEC access advisors can provide more information about required documentation and potential referrals/resources for obtaining documentation. Additionally, we understand that various factors may influence a student's access to documentation that meets the criteria above. For example, students may have documentation from outside the US and in languages other than English, which may not follow the same norms as what may be produced by providers in the US. Students are always welcome to share the documentation they have, and it will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine if it provides the appropriate information.