Psychiatric / Psychological Disabilities Overview

Students who are seeking support services from Ferris State University's Disabilities Services on the basis of diagnosed psychiatric/psychological disabilities are required to submit documentation to verify eligibility under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Protection under these civil rights is based upon documentation of psychiatric/psychological disability that currently substantially limits some major life activity including learning.

The following guidelines are provided in the interest of assuring that documentation is appropriate to verify eligibility and supports requests for reasonable accommodations, academic adjustments, and/or auxiliary aids on the basis of psychiatric/psychological disability that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

Documentation should validate the need for services based on the individual's current level of functioning in the educational setting.

A school plan such as an individualized education program (IEP) or a 504 plan is insufficient documentation, but may be included as part of a more comprehensive assessment battery.

Persons with a psychiatric/psychological disability must provide the following documents for a disability accommodation request:

  1. A recent diagnostic report from an appropriate professional OR physician's statement of long term disability, AND
  2. A completed Verification Form for Documentation of Psychiatric/Psychological Disability.
  3. A completed student questionnaire is required for all students registered with Disabilities Services for the first intake interview with the student.

Documentation must be dated within six months of the student's application for services and include a case history.

The information and documentation that establishes Psychiatric/Psychological Disability should be comprehensive in order to make it possible for a student to be served appropriately.

All documentation is confidential and should be submitted to:

Department Head, Disabilities Services
Ferris State University
Starr 313
Big Rapids, Michigan 49307