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Psychiatric Disabilities

Students living with a visible or hidden disability have special needs as a result of their conditions. Students who have documentation of a physical, learning, or psychiatric disability are eligible to receive accommodations from the Disabled Students Program.

Students with psychiatric disabilities have a persistent psychological condition that can impair educational, social, or occupational functioning. Major depression, bipolar disorder, certain anxiety disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder are some of the illnesses included in the definition which classifies psychiatric disabilities.

In cases of learning disorders, attention deficit disorder and/or psychiatric disabilities, students may not be aware that there are treatments and accommodations (for those who qualify) available for the symptoms that are interfering with their academic progress.

When you suspect a student may have a disability:


  1. Speak to the student in private about your concerns.
  2. Refer the student to the University Accessibility Center (UAC; 801.422.2767).
  3. Acknowledge the difficulties the student is experiencing.
  4. Be sensitive that low self-esteem may be associated with the disability.
  5. Be aware that the UAC may need to contact the faculty member and/or T. A. to follow up on accommodations.
  6. Be aware that all disabilities need medical documentation before the student is eligible for accommodations through the UAC.


  1. Assume the student knows s/he may qualify for accommodations.
  2. Assume the student wants to receive assistance from the UAC.
  3. Pressure the student to acknowledge his/her disability.
  4. Speak to the student in a derogatory manner.