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Disability Services

Guidelines for Documentation: Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD)

  • The following professionals would generally be considered qualified to evaluate and diagnose ADHD provided they have comprehensive training in the differential diagnosis of ADHD and direct experience with an adolescent or adult ADHD population: psychologists, neuropsychologists, psychiatrists and other relevantly trained medical doctors.

  • In most cases a diagnostic evaluation must have been completed within the past three years OR must have been completed as an adult (18 years or older) and still be considered current. If documentation is inadequate in scope or content, or does not address the individual's current level of functioning and need for accommodations, re-evaluation may be required.

  • Developmental history that is documented using independent sources, of appropriate symptoms and problem behaviors across multiple settings. Possible data sources: past evaluations, school records, teacher report.

  • Evidence of a current impairment is required. Include statements of the presenting problem, diagnostic interview, and discussion (or ruling out) of the possibility of dual diagnoses, alternative or coexisting mood, behavioral, neurological and/or personality disorders as well as educational and cultural factors affecting the individual.

  • Test scores or subtest scores alone should not be used as a sole measure for the diagnostic decision regarding ADHD. Checklists and/or surveys may supplement the diagnostic profile but are not adequate for the diagnosis of ADHD and do not substitute for clinical observations and sound diagnostic judgment. All data must logically reflect a substantial limitation to learning for which the individual is requesting the accommodation. Also, there must be clear evidence and documentation of interference with developmentally appropriate academic, social or vocational functioning.

  • The report must include a specific diagnosis (DSM-5—ICD-10) of ADHD and an interpretative summary specifying which. Information about medication prescribed and the side effects of these medications, if any, should be included. Also, identify if specified limitations persist even with medication.

  • Each accommodation recommended by the Evaluator must include a rationale and be correlated with specific functional limitations determined through interview, observation or testing. Include in the documentation any record of prior accommodations or auxiliary aids.

Other Resources

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