CSU’s Office of Disability Services requires a written report prepared by an appropriately licensed professional that clearly diagnoses a disability and/or provides records showing the history of the disability. Medical doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, and school psychologists are among the professionals who routinely evaluate, diagnose, and treat disabilities. The following guidelines are provided to assure that diagnostic reports are appropriate to document eligibility. This list is not intended to be exhaustive or to restrict assessment in other pertinent and helpful areas such as vocational interests and aptitudes.
The ODS reserves the right to request a second opinion regarding any diagnostic information. In the event the University requests a second opinion, the University will bear the cost of the evaluation.
Information regarding a student’s disability is considered confidential. Disability information is not a part of a student’s academic record and is not noted on the transcript. Disability information is kept in a separate, locked file in the ODS. Information is kept for five years after the last semester of enrollment. Students returning to CSU after a five-year absence will need to supply new documentation of their disability.
Information can be shared without the student’s written permission in the event of medical emergency, an official court order, or behavior that endangers the health and safety of the student or others.
Because the accommodations process can involve many people, disability information may be released to university professionals on a need-to-know basis, and is limited to the amount of information necessary to accommodate the student or to keep necessary records. University professionals are informed that this information is confidential and should not be shared with others.
If a student wishes to have information shared with others, he/she will need to make that request in writing and sign a release of information form in the ODS office.
Each student is required to meet with an ODS staff member at or prior to the start of each term. At this time, the staff member will prepare, along with the student, a memo that indicates the necessary accommodations. This memo will be signed by the ODS staff and will indicate accommodations that the staff member and student think will be helpful to the student.
Memos should be presented by the student to the faculty member. This is so the student will have the opportunity to discuss specific needs with the faculty member and discuss how the requested accommodations will impact the classroom environment. Faculty may ask at this time about the student’s specific areas of need, as well as skill areas or compensation strategies the student has found to be helpful.
No individual instructor has unilateral authority to deny a student an academic adjustment and/or auxiliary aid or service approved by the University’s ODS personnel. Any faculty disputes over (i) what or how adjustments or aids are to be provided for a course, (ii) whether a course is deemed to be an essential requirement of the program, or (iii) whether a particular adjustment would be a fundamental alteration of the course or program must be forwarded to the University’s Affirmative Action Office for resolution through the ADA Accommodations Committee (see Grievance section for further detail). This process will include the student and pertinent faculty.
Students with disabilities must be qualified to participate in any academic program or activity, with or without reasonable accommodations. The University does not waive essential program requirements or permit substitutions for courses deemed essential to its academic programs. For example, students with disabilities are expected to meet GPA requirements, degree requirements, field experiences (practica) and all other essential course requirements of a particular program.
The university allows substitution of a limited number of courses on a case-by-case basis when another course will fulfill the same academic goals of the course being substituted and the substitution does not alter the integrity of the academic program.