DSA

Next appointment:

Monday 30th September

Updated 16/09/19

 

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.

Alternatively, take a look at the DSA information on the government website.

How can it help me?

Funding can cover the cost of buying specialist equipment, such as a computer, assistive software, and human support (mentoring 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?

Undergraduate

The full-time and part-time undergraduate DSA is split into four separate allowances:

Specialist equipment allowance (per course); Non-medical helpers (NMH) allowance (per academic year); General allowance (per academic year); and the Travel allowance.

The allowance limits for full-time English students funded through Student Finance England (SFE) are:

Equipment: £5,529 (18/19); £5,684 (19/20)

NMH: £21,987 (18/19); £22,603 (19/20)

General: £1,847 (18/19); £1,899 (19/20)

Travel: Uncapped

The part-time undergraduate DSA has the same four allowances, with the yearly allowances pro-rated according to study intensity, up to a maximum of 75%.

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

One sum to cover all allowances, including travel:

£10,993 per year (18/19); £20,000 per year (19/20)

Different UG and PG allowances may apply to students funded by other funding bodies.

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 our DSA application process page or on the government website.

 

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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