Screening and Formal Assessment for Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLDs)

On this page you will find information regarding:

Screening for SpLDs

If you think you might be dyslexic, have dyspraxia, dyscalculia, and/or experiencing attention and concentration difficulties, you may wish to use a screening tool to explore your strengths and weaknesses. Using an online screening tool will give you flexibility and choice in terms of when, where, and how you do this.

The University currently holds licences for the Neurodiversity Profiler + screening tool which can be used to indicate whether a full assessment for a specific learning difficulty may be beneficial. This is based on an ‘at risk’ outcome only.  

The screening is free for University of Birmingham students who are experiencing learning difficulties and need to begin exploring their profile of strengths and weaknesses.

You can find a link to the screening tool here.

The Neurodiversity Profiler + recognises that neurodivergent conditions and traits can overlap and therefore looks at an individual’s strengths and challenges across a range of cognitive areas.  The report also includes practical guidance and links to support and effective learning resources.

The Profiler includes attention and concentration difficulties. If you receive an 'at risk' outcome in this area, you may wish to consult your GP or an appropriately qualified and experienced educational psychologist (EP) regarding an assessment for ADHD. Whilst some EPs can identify ADHD (seek advice from the British Psychological Society), they are not qualified to prescribe medication. You may therefore choose to share your EP report with your GP. Not all GPs are qualified to prescribe ADHD medication, however, so please seek clarification.

Other examples of online screening tools include:

Payment for these screening tools is your responsibility – please follow the guidance offered by the provider.

Screening results do not provide evidence for applying for reasonable adjustments such as extra time in exams at the University of Birmingham. A formal assessment with a clear diagnosis of a SpLD such as dyslexia is required before adjustments can be made. If you have any queries about your screening outcome, please email to request a conversation with a Disability Advisor.

It is your decision whether to proceed with a full diagnostic assessment with an appropriately qualified specialist, such as an educational psychologist or specialist teacher assessor.

Formal Diagnostic Assessments

A formal assessment could help you answer what may be a long-held question about whether you have a specific learning difficulty. A full diagnostic assessment report may provide evidence for reasonable adjustments such as exam arrangements (e.g. extra reading / writing time) at the University. It may also support a Disabled Students' Allowances (DSAs) application (for home students).

All assessment reports must be available in English. The University cannot accept reports written in other languages and we are unable to provide a translation service.

Arranging a full Diagnostic Assessment

Students who decide to have a full diagnostic assessment are responsible for arranging and paying for it.

The University is unable to recommend or endorse any particular assessment provider but organisations that may be able to assist include:

Costs may vary and not all assessors can investigate the full range of SpLDs (e.g. dyspraxia and dyscalculia). Please ensure that the assessor is experienced in identifying the SpLD(s) you want them to consider.

Please note: ADHD is typically identified by an educational psychologist as opposed to a specialist teacher assessor. A diagnosis will be educational rather than medical. 

The assessor must be qualified to complete a full diagnostic assessment (suitable for higher education and DSA purposes (for UK students)) and hold a current Assessment Practising Certificate (APC) or Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) certificate.

For more information on the criteria to be met in the report, please review our Accessing Support (PDF - 353KB) guidelines.

Financial assistance towards a formal assessment following online screening

If you have a household income of less than £36k per annum, and are unable to pay for a full diagnostic assessment yourself, you may be able to obtain up to £300 of financial assistance towards the cost of a full educational psychologist's or specialist teacher's assessment for specific learning difficulties.

Please note that that funding is not available for updating any previous SpLD documentation e.g. Form 8 or existing diagnostic assessment report.

Please attach the Neurodiversity Screener, Quick Screen or DO-IT Profiler Screener Report to your application for financial assistance.


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