Prove It! What is Disability "Documentation"?

It's the beginning of the year...

You're new on campus - or coming back. You've got your residence hall assignment, found your parking spot, caught up with friends, and are looking for your books.

If you're a student with a disability, you might be wondering about how accessible your classrooms are, how you'll get lecture notes, what to do if you need extra time to take an exam, or if your college will offer interpreters for Welcome Week.

Colleges vary in how they handle these "accommodations" and others.

A few schools make things easy for disabled students; everything is designed for you to get started successfully. Others may make you go through a process to request and set up accommodations. Some create unnecessary or disrespectful procedures that are excessive or unnecessary.

But all campuses expect students to take the first step, by proving they have a disability and that they need some kind of service or assistance. This short training will explain what documentation is, why it's needed, and how to provide it.

We'll talk about that "documentation" process in a moment. First, go to the next page to understand the accommodations process.

"Proving it" goes both ways - it proves you need accommodations, and can be a powerful negotiating tool and evidence if your campus is not providing appropriate and reasonable services. You can question them and ask them to "prove it!"

Also check out our Clearinghouse page about the rights and responsibilities of students, DS providers, and faculty.

Deciding whether you need disability services or whether to register right away? We have a page to help you decide about services, too.

Learn About Accommodations