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Are you entitled to additional support?

Disabled Students’ Allowance

DSA is Government funded support for Higher Education (HE) students with Disabilities.

  • It is not cash – any equipment that a student receives is theirs to keep.
  • Students can apply for DSA as soon as they have their student funding in place.

  • Evidence is required when applying, using an Educational Psychologists’ report for an SpLD, or a Medical Evidence form for anything else.

DSA Information

Please note, an EHCP is not accepted as sole evidence by Student Finance England / Ireland / Scotland / Wales but is acceptable supporting evidence. Other forms of acceptable supporting evidence are:

  • Statement of SEN and Transition Plans
  • Individual Education Plans
  • Learning Difficulty Assessments
  • Recent PIP’s.

Cases are treated on an individual basis.

The application process

After application, a student will be asked to see a Needs Assessor who will design a support package for each individual. A detailed report is given to Student Finance England (Ire/Scot/Wales) and the Disability Co-ordinator.

  • Students applying for DSA will receive 8-10 weeks of basic support from HE Facilitators to allow them to complete the application process. After this point support will be withdrawn if DSA has not been awarded. If you have any concerns or queries please contact the Disability Coordinator.

  • Once a student has DSA in place, they will receive a letter from Student Finance England (Ire/Scot/Wales) breaking down their support package.
  • A support package can consist of Equipment such as a laptop, printer, software, Ergonomic equipment for use at home, 1:1 study skills support tutor, and/or mentoring support.
  • The HE support team have a number of Facilitators that can offer additional support to students, such as, note-taking*, library assistance, practical support, proofreading, etc. It is based on student’s individual needs in accordance with the needs assessment.

Please note, Facilitators do not provide in-class support in the same way as an FE LSA.

It is essential that students who have had a lot of input from the FE ALS team are aware that their support will change when they progress up to HE.

  • If students are moving to another University/College, Northbrooks Disability Advisor can offer some advice and guidance, but they should be informed to contact the Disability Advisor/team of the Applying University. It is possible that the Higher Education Provider can pay for or provide the necessary evidence needed to apply for DSA.
  • Northbrook DO NOT pay for an Educational Psychologist report for HE students that are not enrolled with Northbrook.
  • When attending an Educational Psychologist Assessment booked by Northbrook, the student will be liable for the full cost of testing if they miss their appointment or fail to give 24hr notice of un attendance. This is payable directly to the assessment company.
  • Further Top-up testing appointments are available for other complex neurodevelopmental assessments such as ADHD, ASD at a private cost. This is arranged and paid for directly between the company and the student.

The college DOES NOT pay for this further testing.

More information about eligibility can be found here

*Note-taking is available in discussion with the HE Disability Coordinator and following SFE DSA guidelines. If a student receiving notes is absent from a lecture or taught session notes will not be taken unless discussed and pre-arranged.