Documentation Guidelines

Documentation Guidelines

Accessibility Services works collaboratively with each student applying for accommodations.  The office works to determine eligibility and to identify reasonable accommodations based on the student's request without altering the fundamental nature of the academic program.  The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (amended in 2008) describes an individual with a disability as someone who has: 

  • A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities of such individual;
  • A record of such impairment; or
  • Is regarded as having such an impairment.


The following criteria are provided for evaluators, medical professionals, students and family members to guide the process of preparing  disability documentation.  If you have any questions, please contact Lorna Chambers, Accessibility Services Coordinator.

Send To:

Accessibility Services Program
Lincoln University of PA
1570 Baltimore Pike
Lincoln University, PA 19352
Phone: 484-365-5213
Fax:  484-365-7971

Complete documentation establishes the student as a person with a disability and provides a rationale for reasonable accommodations.  Documentation should contain the following components.  Accessibility Services may contact the evaluator with the student's permission to gather more information.

  1. Credentials of the Evaluator:  Documentation must come from a qualified practitioner who is not a family member of the student.  Documentation must be printed on official letterhead and signed by the credentialed professional.  (Please include name, credentials, licensing, area of specialization, address and contact information.)
  1. History of the Disability:Provide background information, including developmental, medical, psychological, family and academic histories (as relevant).
  2. Statement of Diagnosis and Description of Diagnostic Method:  Include a clear diagnostic statement.   If applicable, include current DSM-V or ICD-9 diagnosis.  A description of the diagnostic criteria, evaluation methods, procedures, tests and dates of administration, as well as a clinical narrative and specific results may be included. 
  3. Current Documentation: Documentation is meant to provide information about the student's current level of functioning in order to (1) establish the disability and (2) identify appropriate accommodations.  We recommend that testing reports be no more than 3-5 years old.  (Adult-normed testing instruments are preferred.)  We recognize that in some circumstances, students may have older evaluations and testing reports; we do not want the absence of a current report to be a deterrent to receiving needed accommodations.  Please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss options.
  4. Description of current functional limitations:  Describe the condition's current functional impact, including severity, frequency and pervasiveness.  Discuss the ways in which the condition limits a major life activity.  Please speak to the ways in which the student's condition may affect his or her functioning in a post-secondary educational environment.
  1. Description of the expected progression or stability of the disability:Include information about expected changes in the functional impact of the disability over time and context (if applicable).  Information on the cyclical or episodic nature of the disability and known or suspected environmental triggers are recommended. 
  2. Description of current and past accommodations:Describe current and past auxiliary aids, assistive devices, support services and accommodations and the ways in which they have (or have not) been effective in ameliorating functional impacts of the disability.  Note:  Accommodations provided in another setting are not binding on the current institution, but they can provide insight in making current decisions. 
  3. Recommendations for accommodations and/or assistive devices: Recommendations should logically relate to functional limitations.  Please include a clear explanation for the rationale for a particular accommodation. Note: Post-secondary institutions are not obligated to adopt recommendations made by outside entities, but recommendations are helpful in determining appropriate accommodations. 


*This is not an exhaustive list. Please contact us if you need guidance about documentation for concerns that are not part of the list below.

  • Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Learning Disabilities & other cognitive Disorders
  • Physical Disabilities or Chronic Health Conditions
  • Psychiatric/ Psychological Disorders
  • Blind and Low Vision
  • Deaf and Hard of Hearing