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Disabled students' allowance

The Disabled Students' Allowance is a grant available to support you with the extra costs you may incur on the course as a direct result of a disability, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty (e.g. Dyslexia).

To be eligible, you must be on a full- or part-time higher education course (at least 25% of a full-time course).

Please be aware that the amount of funding is limited, especially for postgraduate and part-time students. There may be some instances when the total of your support costs will exceed the amount of DSA available.

In these cases, it will be necessary to decide how the funding can be allocated in the most useful way but our team will be on hand to help you work out what works best for you.

Find out more about the DSA

How to apply

You can apply for the DSA through your chosen funding body; typically this would be Student Finance England.

If you are a Nursing or Social Work student in receipt of an NHS Bursary, please apply via the NHS Bursaries Office.

The DSA is separate from the support provided by our team at MDX and we cannot make any decisions about your eligibility. However, we are able to assist you throughout the application process.

Providing evidence

Once you have completed the relevant forms, you need to send these to your funding body along with proof of your disability. The evidence must state that your condition is ongoing and also how it affects you.

Disability or long-term health condition Report or letter from your doctor or consultant
Mental health condition Report or letter from your doctor or consultant
Specific learning difficulty (e.g. Dyslexia) A "Diagnostic Assessment" from a psychologist or suitably qualified specialist teacher – you will need to get reassessed if you had this done when you were under 16

Study Needs Assessment

If your evidence is accepted, you will be advised to arrange a Study Needs Assessment at an Access Centre.

There is an Access Centre right here on campus. Please visit our DDS office to make an appointment once you have received the letter giving permission to proceed.

If you think that your support needs are likely to be complex, it is important that you make us aware of this as soon as possible so that we can discuss all the options available.

The whole process to complete the DSA application can take several months. We therefore strongly advise that you make your application as soon as possible.

  • Personal care support

    The DSA is unable to fund support for activities such as personal care which includes support for day-to-day activities or mobility training.

    Your local Social Services may be able to help you with this. Please contact them as soon as you have made your final choice of university, if not before.

    We recommend having your personal care support arranged before you first arrive at MDX.

  • International students

    If you are an International student and require support due to a disability or specific learning difficulty, please contact the Disability and Dyslexia Service as soon as possible.

    Non-UK students are not eligible for funding through the DSA. However, there may be other sources of funding available.

    Some students coming to the UK to study are eligible for support funding through their home government. However, you would usually need to apply for this before you begin your course.


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