Documentation guidelines

Students seeking accessibility services from WSU Vancouver on the basis of any disability may be required to provide documentation from a qualified professional to support their request for accommodations.

Acceptable sources of documentation for substantiating a student's disability and request for accommodations can take a variety of forms:

  • The student's self-report
  • Direct observation and interaction with the student
  • Additional information from qualified evaluators or professionals
  • Supplemental information sources

This documentation serves three purposes:

  • To establish that the student can be considered a person with a disability, and therefore eligible for reasonable accommodations.
  • To supplement information from the student regarding the impact of the disability.
  • To support and inform the development of reasonable accommodation (auxiliary aids and services) designed to facilitate equal access to university environments on a case-by-case basis.


External documentation will vary in its relevance and value depending on the original context, credentials of the evaluator, the level of detail provided, and the comprehensiveness of the narrative. While all forms of third-party documentation will be accepted and retained, students are encouraged to provide documentation that supports their requested accommodations.

For your convenience, we have provided the Disability Verification Form below, which you may give to your qualified healthcare provider to complete and submit to the Access Center.

Disability/Health Verification Form

Third-party documentation should provide information on the barriers the student experiences in the academic environment so that appropriate accommodations can be identified. Documentation may include:

  • Assessments, reports, documentation or letters from qualified evaluators, professionals, or institutions, (e.g. physicians, psychologist, therapists, diagnosticians)
  • Information from previous school(s)
    • Accommodation agreements/letters
    • Individualized Education Program (IEP) plan
    • 504 Plan
    • Admission, Review and Dismissal (ARD) documents
    • Information from other government agencies, including:
      • Department of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR)
      • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)/Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
      • Veteran's Affairs (VA)
      • Other government agency documents

Using the Disability/Health Verification Form or a letterhead that is dated and signed by a qualified professional, include the following elements:

  • A statement of the disabilities or conditions (diagnoses).
  • A description of the impact or symptoms.
  • If appropriate, a description of the severity, progression or duration.
  • If appropriate, a list of medications and their side-effects.
  • Barriers experienced in academic environment.
  • A list current or past accommodations.
  • Any suggestions or recommended accommodations.

Student's Self-Report

The student is a vital source of information regarding what barriers exist in the academic environment. A student's narrative of their experience of disability, barriers, and effective/ineffective accommodations is an important component for establishing disability and a need for accommodation.

A student's self-report is comprised of:

  • The online Access Center Student Application
    • The Access Center Student Application provides students an opportunity to describe their disability, how it impacts them in the educational environment, what barriers exist and the accommodations they are hoping to receive and/or have received in the past.
  • The initial meeting with an Access Advisor
    • During the initial meeting, and any potential subsequent meetings with the student, the Access Advisor/Coordinator will gather information related to the student's experience and potentially appropriate accommodations through clarifying questions, observation and interaction with the student.

Supplementary Information Sources

While one or more of the above listed sources of information is generally required to determine appropriate accommodations, if you feel that you are unable to communicate your history, experiences or barriers, and would like to include information from a family member, teacher or other individual who knows you well, please provide them with the Supplemental Information Form.

Supplemental Information Form

Note: If determined to be appropriate, the Access Advisor/Coordinator may request additional documentation from a qualified professional in order to support a student's request for accommodations.

How and When to Submit Documentation:

Documentation can be submitted in one of the following ways:

  • Upload online: a link is provided after the application is submitted. This will upload your documentation to a secure, FERPA compliant, server.
  • Email
  • Secure Fax: 360-546-9421
  • In Person: Classroom Building (VCLS) Room 110
  • Mail: Washington State University Vancouver Access Center - VCLS 110, 14204 NE Salmon Creek Avenue, Vancouver, WA 98686.

While a student may wish to submit documentation with their online application, this is not a requirement for meeting with an Access Advisor/Coordinator. The student may request an informational meeting, If additional documentation is needed, the Access Advisor/Coordinator will discuss this with the student during the initial meeting.

What if my existing documentation does not meet the above guidelines?

Submit what you have for review to the Access Center Coordinator. You may be able to receive provisional accommodations while additional documentation is being obtained. If additional documentation is needed, the coordinator can work with you and the diagnostician to clarify what information is needed. If you do not currently have a health care provider that can update documentation, the coordinator can help you identify local providers who may be able to help.

What if I do not have nay documentation for my disability and/r health condition?

Even if you do not have documentation, or are not certain if you documentation is fully sufficient, you are encouraged to complete the Access Center Student Application for accommodations. Once we receive it, the Access Center will reach out to you to arrange an appointment and to clarify what additional information is needed. It is possible you may qualify for provisional or "grace" accommodations while documentation is being gathered.

Questions or concerns regarding documentation requirements? Contact the Access Center.