Access the Student Disability Service

To access the majority of our services you will need to complete our online form and provide appropriate evidence, so we can ensure that any recommended adjustments are appropriate. Please attach your evidence to your registration form or email it to us separately.

Please be aware that the deadline for applications for reasonable adjustments for exams in January 2021 is Friday 16 October 2020. We will continue to process your application with the Student Disability Service after this date, but if you have support requirements that need to be considered for upcoming exams you will need to talk to your Wellbeing Officer about the University's extenuating circumstances procedure.

You can find out more about how our service is continuing to support (and preparing to welcome) students in our student newsletters:

Evidence

Due to COVID-19 we understand that many students may be finding it difficult to obtain suitable medical evidence at this time. We would encourage you still to register with the Student Disability Service and send us any evidence that you have (even if you are unsure that it meets the criteria), so that initial discussions about your support can take place where necessary.

For up to date guidance on obtaining diagnostic evidence for a Specific Learning Difficulty (SpLD), please see our 'Specific learning difficulties' section in our evidence guidance below.

As soon as you are able to submit the required evidence for reasonable adjustments, please email a copy of it to disability@contacts.bham.ac.uk and we will be able to review it and continue processing your application with the Student Disability Service.

If our service holds relevant and up-to-date evidence of your disability or learning difficulty, your department should not need to request additional evidence.

If you have any queries about your evidence, please contact us at disability@contacts.bham.ac.uk .

Evidence guidance

Specific learning difficulties

To implement reasonable adjustments, we require a full diagnostic assessment report completed in accordance with SASC guidelines by either:

  • An Educational Psychologist who holds a current Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC ) certificate or;
  • A specialist teacher assessor holding a current assessment practising certificate (APC).

Please note, a JCQ Form 8 is insufficient. Please see our Accessing Support (PDF - 159KB) guidelines for more detailed guidance or email disability@contacts.bham.ac.uk.

COVID-19 update:

We understand that many students are unable to arrange a full dignostic assessment at this time due to physical distancing measures as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

For 2020 a professional evaluation of need based on a well evidenced screening and remote diagnostic interview could provide evidence for interim reasonable adjustments to be put in place. 

The screening will need to be undertaken independently before arranging a diagnostic interview to produce an evalution of need. Information about screening for SpLDs can be found at on our screening webpage.

The University is unable to recommend or endorse any particular provider of diagnostic interviews 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 holds a current Assessment Practising Certificate (APC) or Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) certificate and adds the certificate number and their signature to the evaluation of need.

Please note that all remote evaluations of need must contain the wording of the ‘specific statement’ as advised in the SASC guidance.

If you have any further questions about obtaining a remote evaluation of need please email disability@contacts.bham.ac.uk 

Other disability, physical or mental health condition

We require medical evidence to show that you are eligible for registering with our service, for example a Disabled Students’ Allowances report or a GP or consultant’s letter that clearly states a long-term diagnosis. Appointment letters are not sufficient for this purpose. Please note that some GPs charge for writing evidence letters and you will be liable to pay this fee.

If you do not already have appropriate evidence, we advise you to obtain a letter that shows you are disabled under the definition of the Equality Act 2010 (see below). This is so that you can use the same letter to apply for Disabled Students’ Allowances.

It is helpful for the medical evidence to include:

  • Diagnosis
  • Likely duration of the disability / health condition
  • Whether the condition is fluctuating
  • Possible effects of the disability on learning / attendance at University etc (as if condition was untreated)
  • Any impact on day-to-day activities (as if condition was untreated).

If possible identify whether the condition affects:

  • Concentration or memory
  • Motivation
  • Reading / writing for long periods
  • Use of computers
  • Ability to walk any distance
  • Whether medication may have side effects that may impact on learning, e.g. sleep disturbance, fatigue in the mornings etc.

A person is disabled under the Equality Act 2010 if they have a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on their ability to do normal daily activities (this includes study-related activities). 

‘Substantial’ is more than minor or trivial – e.g. it takes much longer than it usually would to complete a daily task like getting dressed. ‘Long-term’ means that it may well last for 12 months or more, although conditions where the impact fluctuates, such as depression or fibromyalgia, are also likely to be covered.

The impact of impairment or disability should be described as if it was not treated by medication, therapy or other care and lifestyle management.

Registering for on-campus parking

If you are registering with us for on-campus parking only, we require a letter from your GP or consultant which clearly states that you would benefit from on-campus parking, with the reasons why. For example, you have difficulty walking more than 100 metres.

If you are a Blue Badge holder, you do not need to register with our service to access car parking on-campus. Please attach a copy of your blue badge to the application form available under 'Student parking' on the Car parking intranet page. 

Registering for exam adjustments

If you are registering with us for exam adjustments only, we require a letter from your GP or consultant which follows the guidelines detailed in the 'Other disability, physical or mental health conditions' section and clearly states that you would benefit from exam adjustments.

January 2021 exam adjustments: 

The deadline for applications for reasonable adjustments for exams in January 2021 is Friday 16 October 2020. We will continue to process your application with the Student Disability Service after this date, but if you have support requirements that need to be considered for upcoming exams you will need to talk to your Wellbeing Officer about the University's extenuating circumstances procedure.

For more information on the range of other services you can access, including if you are experiencing exam stress please  the mental health and wellbeing team

 

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