Procedure for Requesting Academic Accommodations/Modifications
Accommodations are determined on an individual basis through an interactive process that includes the student and the Geisel Office of Student Accessibility Services (GSAS) and are based on federal law and Dartmouth College guidelines. GSAS officials partner with Geisel students to determine reasonable accommodations and coordinates the provision of their disability-related accommodations.
Please note - disability documentation may be submitted via email; however, such a transmission is not considered a secure or confidential method for sharing sensitive information. A more secure method is via the GSAS fax: (603) 646-5559.
Geisel students are expected to be actively responsible for all aspects of their enrollment. Students requesting accommodations must take the initiative to seek assistance, comply with deadlines and agreements, and participate in the following procedure:
- Contact GSAS to Self-Disclose Known Disability or Discuss a Potential Disability
Geisel medical students requesting accommodations must contact GSAS to arrange a meeting with GSAS personnel to determine disability status, discuss an accommodation request or to determine if an accommodation is appropriate. Students may contact the office by
If possible, this contact should take place at least three weeks prior to the start of an academic block, course, or clinical clerkship or immediately following an injury or illness, in order to disclose a disability/illness/injury and to initiate accommodation(s). Accommodations may be sought at any time. However, if a request is not timely, accommodations may be delayed.
- Complete a "Request for Disabilities Services/Accommodation" Form
After contacting GSAS, a student must complete and sign the "Request for Disabilities Services/Accommodation" form, which will be given to the student when he/she/they meets with GSAS.
- Provide Required Documentation
Students must provide relevant and current (typically within three years) documentation of disability through evaluation by an appropriate and qualified professional. In general, documentation should be completed by a licensed or credentialed examiner (not a family member or individual who has a conflict of interest) and include the following components as appropriate:
- A description of the disability, including the diagnosis and history;
- A description of the current impact on major life activities in daily living and in an educational setting in comparison with most people in the general population;
- A description of the expected duration, frequency, severity, and progression of the condition; and,
- A description of the past use of disability services.
Examples of disability documentation include (but are not limited to):
- Educational, psychological, or medical records;
- Reports and assessments created by healthcare providers, psychologists, or an educational system;
- Documents that reflect education and accommodation history, such as audiology reports and vision assessments;
- Verification form of a disability provided by a prior or current educational institution;
- Statement from a health or other service professional; and,
- Vocational assessment.
Certain disabilities, such as specific learning disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), visual impairments, hearing impairments, and/or psychiatric disorders, may require more detailed documentation. Please refer to the Guidelines for Documentation of Specific Disabilities for additional information.
- Evaluation of the Accommodation Request
GSAS will evaluate the accommodation request with respect to the completeness and appropriateness of the clinical or other diagnostic documentation and the reasonableness of the request. In limited circumstances, GSAS will request the student to authorize GSAS to consult with the original evaluator for a variety of reasons, such as, when the documentation and/or necessity of a recommended accommodation is unclear, or when a recommended accommodation could conflict with Geisel's Essential Standards. A student may be asked to provide updated comprehensive information if the condition is potentially changeable and/or previous documentation does not include sufficient relevant information. Furthermore, in order to arrive at an appropriate decision regarding the accommodation request, GSAS may consult the requestor's clinical providers, relevant faculty and/or course coordinators with an educational need to know, or other external disability or accommodations officials.
- Issuance of Accommodation Request Decision
When all documentation is received and appropriate meetings/discussions held, GSAS will evaluate the accommodations request and issue its decision for final review and sign off by the requesting student. GSAS will contact the student and arrange a meeting to discuss the decision. If the student agrees with the accommodation decision, both the student and a GSAS official will sign the "Accommodation Approval and Consent Form." A copy of the form will be provided to the student and placed in the student's confidential file in the GSAS office. In cases where the student disagrees with GSAS's accommodation decision, they will be instructed about the appeal process.
- Implementation of Accommodations in Courses and Clerkships and Student's Responsibilities
GSAS will provide a copy of the accommodation form to whomever has an educational need to know in order to implement the accommodation. However, in some cases, students will be required to personally deliver copies of the accommodation form to certain parties for implementation purposes, particularly during the clinical phase of their schooling. Students will be notified if and when they must deliver the accommodation form themselves and will be responsible for delivering the form in a timely manner. If any problem arises in the receipt of the accommodation form, the student must contact GSAS as soon as possible to ensure that the necessary steps are taken to guarantee the accommodation is in place.