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Documentation Guidelines: Learning Disabilities

  1. A psycho-educational or neuropsychological evaluation that provides a diagnosis of a specific learning disability as defined by the DSM-IV must be submitted.  If there is a dual diagnosis (ADD/ADHD, mood disorder, etc.), it should be noted.

  2. The evaluation must be performed by a professional licensed/ certified in the field of learning disabilities. Professionals who are qualified include psychiatrists, psychologists, neuropsychologists, and learning disabilities specialists.

  3. The evaluation should be based on a comprehensive battery of tests that would include:

    • Cognitive Functioning/Intelligence Test:  An individually administered intelligence test such as the WAIS-R or the WAIS-III.  Sub-test scores should be included.
    • Academic Achievement: A comprehensive academic achievement battery such as the Woodcock-Johnson must document deficits relative to potential.  This should include current levels of functioning in relevant areas.
    • Information Processing: Specific areas such as short and long term memory, auditory and visual perception/processing, and executive functioning should be assessed.
    • Social-Emotional Assessment: Assessment should be included that rules out a primary emotional basis for learning difficulties.
    • Clinical Summary: A diagnostic summary including specific recommendations for accommodations.
  4. Neither a 504 plan nor an individualized educational plan constitute appropriate documentation, but may be submitted in addition to the above. 

  5. The documentation must reflect the current status of the disability, and be as up-to-date as possible (preferably have been done within the last three years). If the documentation is older than this, the student may be required to submit updated information and/or documentation.  

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