Applying for the Disabled Students Allowance

The Disabled Students’ Allowance

In Higher Education, additional support for learning such as one-to-one dyslexia support, note-taking or mentor support, computer equipment or assistive software for your own use, is funded through Student Finance and the Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs).

In order to apply for DSAs you will need to have evidence of your disability or specific learning difficulties. In the case of specific learning difficulties, e.g. dyslexia, you will need to have evidence of a diagnostic assessment carried out by an Educational Psychologist (or another appropriately qualified professional).

A full dyslexia assessment can be arranged for you here at the University. You can either pay for the assessment yourself or you can apply for help with payment of the fee.

 Once you have an up to date assessment, you can then apply for DSAs. We recommend that the application process is started as early as possible as it can take several months for the process to be completed. We advise that you apply prior to study, and at the very latest at by the beginning of Level 5. Our Disbaility Advisor can help you with the DSAs application process. 

 How to apply for Disabled Students’ Allowances


  • Tick the ‘Disabled Students’ Allowances’ box on the Student Finance application form. The funding body will then send you an application form (DSA1) and a guidance booklet.


  • Download copies of the form and the guidance booklet from the website.


If your application is successful, you will receive a letter from the funding body confirming your entitlement and advising you that you will need to have a Study Needs Assessment

Study Needs Assessment

  • You can arrange to have this assessment carried out at a university Access Centre close to your home or we can arrange for this to be carried out at an independent assessment centre. You must have a current report of your disability and the letter of confirmation from Student Finance before you can book the assessment.

At your assessment, you will meet with an assessor who will talk to you about your disability/learning difficulty and how it may affect your studies. The assessor may demonstrate any appropriate equipment or software.

  • The Study Needs Assessment report will be sent to you. Once you have signed to say that you agree with its findings and have returned the report, a copy will be sent to Student Finance.


  • Student Finance will send you a letter informing you of the equipment and support that they agree to fund. They will also specify the suppliers and give you their contact details.

Our Disability Adviser can help you with contacting the suppliers, and will arrange any support that may have been approved.

Follow the link below for more information on the Disabled Students’ Allowances