UK Student Rights

The Equality Act 2010 calls the arrangements that your education provider makes to meet these needs ‘reasonable adjustments’. There is a lot of information in the Equality Act 2010 that pertains to students right and the format in which they are presented are not as user friendly as I would like to make it for you guys, but if I was to try and rewrite it, I worry I may miss something important. For this reason I have linked right to the Act itself in order to give you the most information as possible.

At the bottom of this page, you can also find the information pertaining to the Disable Student Allowance. 

Equality Act 2010 Student Rights

Disabled Student Allowances

Overview

As a higher education student living in England, you can apply for a Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) if you have a disability, including a:

  • long-term health condition
  • mental health condition
  • specific learning difficulty, eg dyslexia

You must meet the definition of disability under the Equality Act 2010.

The support you get depends on your individual needs and not on income.

What you’ll get

Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs) are paid on top of your other student finance. They help you pay the extra costs you may have because of your disability. They don’t have to be repaid.

How much you get depends on your individual needs – not your household income. If you’re a part-time student your ‘course intensity’ can affect how much you get.

2014 to 2015 academic year

Type of student Specialist equipment allowance Non-medical helper allowance General allowance
Full-time Up to £5,212 for the whole course Up to £20,725 a year Up to £1,741 a year
Part-time Up to £5,212 for the whole course Up to £15,543 a year Up to £1,305 a year

Postgraduates can get a single allowance of up to £10,362 a year.

These figures are the maximum amounts – most students get less.

2015 to 2016 academic year

Type of student Specialist equipment allowance Non-medical helper allowance General allowance
Full-time Up to £5,212 for the whole course Up to £20,725 a year Up to £1,741 a year
Part-time Up to £5,212 for the whole course Up to £15,543 a year Up to £1,305 a year

Postgraduates can get a single allowance of up to £10,362 a year.

These figures are the maximum amounts – most students get less.

What DSAs can pay for

You can get help with the costs of:

  • specialist equipment, eg a computer if you need one because of your disability
  • non-medical helpers
  • extra travel because of your disability
  • other disability-related costs of studying

You may get a new computer if you don’t already have one, or your current one doesn’t meet the required specification. More information will be provided to you if you’re assessed as needing a new computer.

You’ll need to pay the first £200, which is the minimum cost that any student is likely to incur when buying a computer.

DSAs don’t cover disability-related costs you’d have if you weren’t attending a course, or costs that any student might have.

Your ‘needs assessment’

Once your eligibility for DSAs is confirmed, Student Finance England may ask you to contact an assessment centre to work out what help you need.

This is known as a needs assessment. Don’t book this until Student Finance England asks you to.

The assessment is paid for through any DSAs entitlement you may have.

After the assessment, you’ll get a report listing equipment and other support you can get for your course.

Don’t buy any equipment until you’ve been assessed – you won’t be reimbursed for it.

How DSAs are paid

Money is paid either into your bank account or directly to the organisation providing the service or equipment.

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