Students who are seeking support services from North Idaho College on the basis of an attention disability will be required to submit documentation to verify eligibility. Documentation of disability and related information will be kept in a separate file in the CEA Office. The cost and responsibility for providing this documentation shall be borne by the student.
Although the more generic term Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) is frequently used, the official nomenclature used in the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders”, 4th edition (DSM-IV), Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), will be used in this document.
Documentation should show current impact of the disability. The age of acceptable documentation is dependent upon the stability of the disability. The following guidelines are provided in the interest of assuring that the evaluation and report are appropriate for documenting eligibility and identifying reasonable accommodations. The report must clearly state the names, titles, professional credentials, addresses, and phone numbers of the evaluators,) indicate dates of testing, and be on official letterhead, typed, dated, and signed.
- Documentation must be prepared by a professional who has comprehensive training in differential diagnosis and direct experience working with adolescents and adults with ADHD which may include: clinical psychologists, neuropsychologists, psychiatrists, and other relevantly trained medical doctors.
- Documentation must be current. The provision of all reasonable accommodations and services is based upon the assessment of the current impact of the disability on academic performance. This means that the diagnostic evaluation should show the current level of functioning and impact of the disability.
- Documentation must be comprehensive. Minimally, areas to be addressed should include:
- evidence of early and current impairment. By definition in the DSM-IV, ADHD first exhibited in childhood and manifests itself in more than one setting. Therefore, a comprehensive assessment should include a clinical summary of objective historical information garnered from sources such as transcripts, report cards, teacher comments, tutoring evaluations, past psycho-educational testing, and third party interviews when available.
- possible alternative diagnoses including medical conditions, psychiatric disorders, and mimicking ADHD that should be explored.
- relevant testing information. Test scores or subtest scores alone should not be used as a sole measure for the diagnostic decision regarding ADHD. Selected subtest scores from measures of intellectual ability, memory functions tests, attention or tracking tests, or continuous performance tests do not in and of themselves establish the presence or absence of ADHD. Checklists and/or surveys can serve to supplement the diagnostic profile, but in and of themselves are not adequate for the diagnosis of ADHD.
- If applicable, present a specific diagnosis of ADHD based on the DSM-IV diagnostic criteria. The diagnostician should use direct language in the diagnosis of ADHD, avoiding the use of such terms as "suggests," "is indicative of," or "attention problems."
- Provide a comprehensive interpretive summary synthesizing the evaluator's judgment for the diagnosis. The report should include: all quantitative information in standard scores and or percentiles, all relevant developmental, familial, medical, medication, psychosocial, behavioral and academic information; and a clear identification of the substantial limitation of a major life function presented by the ADHD.
- Suggestions of reasonable accommodations with supporting evidence is encouraged.
- Any exceptions of the above criteria and the final determination for providing appropriate and reasonable accommodations rests with the CEA Coordinator.