A mental health disability is defined as a persistent psychological or psychiatric disorder, or emotional or mental illness. This disability must be verified by an appropriately licensed or certified professional.


Characteristics and limitations vary widely from individual to individual. Some are highly aware of their limitations and skilled in disability management; others may need support.

  • May be easily distracted, have difficulty with focus and concentration, or may have difficulty following through on assignments
  • May become anxious during exams, when in unfamiliar situations, or when called upon in class
  • May have difficulty processing feedback about their behavior
  • May be hesitant to articulate information about their disability due to the fear of stigma that often comes with disclosure
  • May have problems with attendance when symptoms are acute


  • Extended time on exams and/or distraction free test environment
  • Breaks during exams or high intensity learning situations
  • Tape recording of lectures
  • Note takers 
  • Preferred seating (i.e. in student's preferred location)
  • Liquids allowed in class (to alleviate thirst caused by medications)