Documentation Guidelines

Sources of information used for determining a disability and accommodations may include a student’s self-report, direct observational interaction with the student, and/or documentation from qualified evaluators or professionals. The Dartmouth ADA Office will review all relevant information and accommodation requests on an individualized, case-by-case basis.

Student Self-Report

Students should complete the Graduate Student Accommodation Request Form which provides students an opportunity to describe their disability and any accommodations they are requesting. The Accommodation Request Form also includes the ability to attach supporting third-party documentation.

Students may supplement their Accommodation Request Form with additional information. Students may consider including additional information about their experiences related to their disability, the challenges or barriers encountered, and/or previous accommodations. Student accommodations are determined by the Dartmouth ADA Office.


Disability-related documentation should provide information about the current impact of the condition in order to determine appropriate accommodations. This information may include assessments, reports, and/or letters from qualified evaluators, professionals, or institutions. Common sources of documentation are health care providers, psychologists, and diagnosticians. Clinicians are generally expected to have an established relationship with the student and should not be related to the student. Evidence of accommodations approved from previous schools such as accommodation agreements or letters, 504 plans, IEPs, and accommodations for standardized exams can also be included as additional supporting information.

Suggested Documentation Elements

  1. Typed on letterhead, dated, and signed by a qualified professional including a licensure number.
  2. Provide start date of clinical relationship with client and the most recent interaction. If appropriate, include the frequency of recurring meetings.
  3. Clearly state the condition(s) or disabilities, including date(s) of onset and prognosis.
  4. Describe the impact or symptoms of the condition(s) or disabilities, including impact of major live activities.
  5. Relevant information regarding the severity.
  6. For conditions that are cyclical in nature, describe the frequency, manner, and duration of active symptoms.
  7. If necessary, list relevant treatment or medication side-effects.
  8. Any recommended accommodations should include a rationale with a clear relationship to the impact of the condition, symptoms, or medication side-effects.