A mental disability normally will be listed in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. The latest version, published in 2000, is the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental disorders IV Text Revision. Not all diagnoses qualify as a disability. The condition must be a mental or psychological condition that meets the definitions of applicable law. A written statement from a qualified, licensed medical professional such as a psychologist, psychiatrist, social worker, or qualified MD should be provided.
The diagnosis that the medical professional provides must be current, and should include the following data: DSM IV diagnosis across all axes, date of diagnosis and last office visit, the assessment or evaluation procedures used to make this diagnosis, a description of the major symptoms of the disorder currently manifested by the student, including level of severity, any medications prescribed and possible side-effects, a description of the functional limitations imposed by the disorder, and the current prognosis for the student.
Students are also asked to provide documentation which describes the disability and recommends accommodations to be provided. The documentation should include information regarding the onset, longevity and severity of the symptoms, as well as the specifics describing the impact of the disability on the student's academic performance. This information is confidential and will not be released to others without the student's permission.
The staff of Monsour Counseling and Psychological Services is qualified to provide the required documentation. In addition, the Dean of Students' Office can refer you to many qualified individuals in the Claremont area who can evaluate you, as well.
Accommodations can include note takers, extended time on exams and/or a private test area, a reduced course load, and assistive technology.