Disability accommodations are intended to provide “reasonable accommodation” in legal terms, or in common language, a “level playing field” for disabled students in order for them to compete academically with their peers. Providing accommodations for disabled students is required by federal statute; it is not an option. Failure to comply with these regulations has been the grounds for numerous suits brought against institutions of higher education; in some cases, specific Instructors have also been sued.
A “disability” has been defined as any impairment in function which limits normal performance and includes physical disabilities (such as being wheelchair-bound), learning disabilities (such as dyslexia or math disorder), or other mental health disorder (such as severe depression, anxiety disorder, etc.). All disability claims must evidence a diagnosis by a physician, psychologist, or other health-care professional. This diagnosis is based upon codified standards of practice (ICD-10, or DSM-IV-TR, for example).
The University does not provide health care professionals for disability assessment. Any fees associated with testing or diagnosis must be born by the student.