Learning Disabilities

Documentation, including professional evaluation and assessment, must have occurred within 36 months prior to the student's initial request for services with the Center for Students with DisABILITIES (CSD). Documentation should be comprehensive; it should include a thorough diagnostic interview, assessment of aptitude and academic achievement, history of previous accommodations, assessment of information processing, and a diagnosis. Previous educational records, including transcripts may be requested. Additional evaluative/assessment information may also be requested, depending on the individual student. Documentation should verify the need for services based on the student's current level of functioning within the University setting.

  1. Diagnostic Interview: The interview should include, when relevant, information about family history, developmental history, medical history, relevant psychosocial and employment history, primary language of the home and current fluency in English, history of substance abuse, and any history of psychological disorders. A thorough description of the current presenting problem(s) is always indicated.
  2. IQ Battery: A complete IQ Battery battery is required, including all subtests and standard scores. The preferred instrument is the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III (WAIS-III). The Slosson Intelligence Test-Revised and the Kaufman Adult Intelligence Test DO NOT constitute adequate aptitude test measures.
  3. Achievement Testing: A complete achievement test battery is required, including all subtests and standard scores. Acceptable measures include: Woodcock-Johnson Psychoeducational Battery-Revised; Tests of Achievement, Wechsler Individual Achievement Test, Stanford Test of Academic Skills, and the Scholastic Abilities Test for Adults. Neither the Wide Range Achievement Test-Revised nor the Nelson-Deny are acceptable comprehensive measures of achievement.
  4. Information Processing: Specific areas of information processing must be assessed, for example short and long-term memory; sequential memory; auditory and visual perception/processing; processing speed; executive functioning; and motor ability. Acceptable measures include the Detroit Test of Learning Aptitude-3, Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Cognitive Ability; and WAIS-III subtest information.
  5. Diagnosis: Diagnosis should be documented as clearly and specifically as possible. Individual "learning styles", "learning differences", "academic problems", and so forth do not constitute a learning disability.
  6. Accommodations Recommended: The report should indicate any limitations to learning presented by the diagnosis and the degree to which they impact the student in the context for which accommodations are being requested. The report should indicate why specific accommodations are needed, and how these accommodations impact the specific disability.
  7. Evaluator Qualifications: Reports should be typed, dated, signed, and appear on professional letterhead. The examiner's professional credentials should include license/certification information and jurisdictional information. Qualified examiners include clinical and counseling psychologists, educational and school psychologists, neuropsychologists, and learning disabilities specialists. Professionals who are qualified to assess learning disabilities but who are from a different discipline other than those listed above should indicate their training and experience that qualifies them to conduct these assessments.