DSA

Next appointment:

Monday 18th December

updated 14/12/17

Christmas & New Year Closure

We close at 16:00 on Friday 22/12/17, reopening at 08:30 on Tuesday 02/01/18

Accreditation

We are accredited by the Disabled Students Allowances Quality Assurance Group (DSA-QAG)

DSA QAG accredited seal

Disabled Students’ Allowance

What is the DSA?

DSA stands for the Disabled Students’ Allowance. It is funding given to students with disabilities (including dyslexia) free of charge, in order to ensure they have the best chance of success in higher education. The DSA provides a way for disabled and dyslexic students to get specialist equipment and support without spending their own money.

Can I get it?

Generally speaking, if you are studying a Higher Education course at a college or university within the UK, and you have medical proof of your disability or dyslexia (such as a doctor’s note, or an educational psychologist’s report for dyslexia) it is very likely that you will be eligible for DSA. There are some exceptions, so to be sure contact your disability officer at your place of study or contact your funding body. This is most likely to be Student Finance England (SFE), Student Finance Wales (SFW) or Student Finance Northern Ireland (SFNI), but it could also be a research council, the NHS Bursary or the Open University. For more details see Extra Help – Disabled Students’ Allowances 2017/18.

How can it help me?

Funding can cover the cost of buying specialist equipment, such as a computer, assistive software, and human support (library support or study skills tuition, for example).

Each student is assessed individually by a qualified needs assessment officer. Funding decisions are based on a number of factors, not just the nature of your disability, so recommendations will differ from one student to the next. For example, a student with dyslexia will not necessarily get identical support to someone else with dyslexia.

How much are the DSA allowances?

The 17/18 DSA allowances for England, (Wales) and [Northern Ireland] are:

Full-time undergraduates:

Specialist equipment allowance – £5,358 (£5,332) [£5,266] for the course

Non-medical helpers allowance – £21,305 (£21,181) [£20,938] pa

General allowance – £1,790 (£1,785) [£1,759] pa

Travel allowance – ‘reasonable’ extra disability-related costs

Part-time undergraduates:

Specialist equipment allowance – £5,358 (£5,332) [£5,266] for the course

Non-medical helpers – pro rata, to maximum of £15,978 (£15,885) [£15,703] pa

General allowance – pro rata, to maximum of £1,342 (£1,388) [£1,319] pa

Travel allowance – ‘reasonable’ extra disability-related costs

Postgraduates (both full-time and part-time):

One sum to cover all allowances – £10,652 (£10,590) [£10,469] pa

How do I apply?

The easiest way to apply for DSA is to contact the disability officer at your place of study. They are useful sources of information and can help you to complete the relevant paperwork and guide you through the necessary steps. If you can’t find your disability officer, or for some reason you don’t want anybody at your place of study to know about your disability, you should contact your funding body. You can also follow the steps highlighted on the DSA application process page.

The government-published Extra Help – Disabled Students’ Allowances 2017/18 provides detailed information on how to apply.

Want a call back?

If you have difficulty contacting us or would like us to call you, please email: dsa@westminster.ac.uk with your details.

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