It is the student’s responsibility to make their accommodation needs to be known and to provide the appropriate documentation to support the need for the requested accommodations. Students are also responsible for renewing their affiliation and services with Student Accessibility Services (SAS) each semester. Students need to remember that under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), accommodations are provided to ensure equal access. A student has the right to succeed to fail in a course based on their academic performance. Accommodations in no way guarantee a student’s success in a course.
Students are eligible to receive accommodations due to a documented need if they meet the following requirements:
- Be a currently enrolled or admitted student at FSU Panama City for the semester in which accommodations are requested.
- Provide current and comprehensive documentation of a diagnosed disability to SAS at FSU Panama City. The documentation criteria can be found below.
- Register with SAS by completing all documentation and completing an intake meeting with the Student Support Coordinator. After successful registration, students will be provided with Letters of Accommodation to provide their faculty.
After the initial registration, students must renew their affiliation and request services at the beginning of each semester by contacting SAS to continue receiving services.
Students may apply for accommodations at any time during the semester, but SAS will require at least seven (7) days to process the application and schedule the intake meeting. Accommodations are not retroactive, meaning they only apply from the point of application approval and submitting the letter of accommodation to faculty. Applications received within the last 10 class days of the semester will be processed for the following semester in which the student is enrolled.
- Application – Students will can download the application online or pick up a printed version at SAS. Completed applications, along with all appropriate documentation (outlined below), should be returned to SAS to begin the review process.
- Review Process – The review process includes an examination of the presented information to determine the functional limitation resulting from the disability and how that limitation impacts the ability of the student in the university environment. Provisional accommodations might be offered in the interim, but a final determination of accommodations will not be made until all appropriate information has been gathered.
- Intake Meeting – Once a student’s application has been reviewed, SAS will contact the student to schedule an intake meeting. During this meeting, the staff and student will discuss the academic accommodations for which the student is eligible. Appropriate accommodations are determined based on the type of disability, documented needs, previous accommodations, and functional limitations of the student. The student will have the opportunity to select which approved accommodations they would like to use for the semester in which they are registering. Students have the opportunity to review these selections during the Letters of Accommodation request process each semester in which the student is enrolled.
- Letters of Accommodations – Students are provided with Letters of Accommodation based on the application and intake meeting. It is then the responsibility of the student to provide these letters to faculty, as appropriate, and to initiate the use of listed accommodations throughout the semester.
Documentation submitted to SAS is confidential and used solely to assist students in identifying and securing accommodations and services to support their full participation at FSU Panama City. Affiliation with SAS is not reported on a student’s transcript.
Documentation can be submitted for review at any time during the year as long as the documentation is for a currently registered student or any incoming student that has accepted their offer of admission. However, all documentation provided to the SAS within the last 21 class days will be processed for the following semester. No exceptions will be made to this policy. It is the student’s responsibility to apply for and obtain accommodations in a reasonable time frame within the semester.
As appropriate to the disability, documentation should include:
Diagnostic criteria and/or diagnostic test information. The diagnostic systems suggested in the recent editions of either the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-V) or the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems of the World Health Organization (ICD) are the recommended diagnostic taxonomies. Descriptions should include the specific results of diagnostic procedures, diagnostic tests utilized, and when it was administered. Diagnostic methods used should be congruent with the disability and current professional practices within the field. Informal or non-standardized evaluations should be described in enough detail that a professional colleague could understand their role and significance in the diagnostic process. Documentation should be from an appropriate licensed and/or certified professional.
Description of the current functional impact of the disability. The current functional impact on physical, perceptual, cognitive, mental, and/or behavioral abilities should be described either explicitly or through the provision of specific results from the diagnostic procedures. Currency will be evaluated based on the typical progression of the disability, its interaction with development across the lifespan, the presence or absence of significant events (since the date of evaluation) that would impact functioning, and how the information applies to the current situation of the request for accommodations.
Description of current treatments, medications, assistive devices/services. A history of treatments, medications, assistive devices, accommodations, and/or assistive services. Significant and potential side effects that may impact physical, perceptual, mental, behavioral, and/or cognitive performance should also be noted.
Description of the expected progression or stability of the impact of the disability over time. The description should provide an estimate of the change in the functional limitations of the disability over time and/or recommendations for reevaluation.
Recommendations for accommodations. Depending on the impact on the individual, the documentation should include suggestions or recommendations for accommodations, adaptive devices, assistive services, compensatory strategies, and/or collateral support services that can help to provide full access. As appropriate, recommendations for collateral medical, psychological, and/or educational support services or training that would be beneficial may also be included. Recommendations from professionals with a history of working with the individual provide valuable information for the review process. They will be included in the evaluation of requests for accommodations. When recommendations go beyond services that are or can be provided by the University, they may be used for referrals to services outside of FSU Panama City.
Credentials of the diagnosing professional(s). Information describing the certification, licensure, and/or professional training of individuals conducting the evaluation should be provided. It is important to have the documentation on official letterhead.