The University of Texas-Pan American
 
Disability Services
April 16, 2014
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Blind or Low Vision Documentation Guidelines

In order to fully evaluate requests for accommodations or auxiliary aids and to determine eligibility for services, the Disability Services office (DS) needs documentation of your disability. The documentation you provide should include an evaluation by an appropriate licensed professional that makes evident the current impact of the disability as it relates to the accommodation(s) requested and include a description of any and all functional limitations. Those accommodations prescribed by DS are provided so that students have equal access to activities and programs at UTPA. Professionals conducting assessments and rendering diagnoses must be qualified to do so. Such documentation should be on letterhead and contain the professional's signature and license number. The evaluator must be impartial and not related to the person being evaluated.

The general guidelines listed below are developed to assist you in working with your treating/diagnosing professional(s) to prepare the information needed to evaluate your request(s). If, after reading these guidelines and reviewing disability specific information provided below, you have any questions, feel free to call DS at 956-665-7005.

Documentation

In order to receive services from DS, documentation must be submitted in advance. Documentation validates the disability, which allows consideration for accommodation requests. The currency of documentation is dependent upon the nature of the loss of vision. However, each case will be evaluated on a case by case basis. Documentation should include but is not limited to:

  • Current functional impact of the condition in an academic setting
  • Treatments, medications, accommodations/auxiliary aids, services currently prescribed or in use as related to the previously mentioned functional limitations.
  • The expected progression or stability of disability over time
  • A diagnostic statement identifying the disability

Listed below are recommended forms of documentation and appropriate professionals to complete the documentation.

Types of Documentation

Visual acuity and Certificate of Blindness (if applicable)

Qualified Professional or Organization

  • Licensed Ophthalmologist
  • Licensed Optometrist
  • Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS)-Division of Blind Services (DBS)
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