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A Disabled Student Allowances (DSA) Study Needs Assessment is a discussion between you and one of our Assessors about your study methods and how these relate to your chosen course of study.

We will match you with the most suitable Assessor available for your disability with the aim of recommending a package of support that helps you as an individual achieve your potential.

You do not need to bring anything with you to the appointment unless specifically instructed and you should allow about two hours for the appointment.

The Assessor will ask you about disability-related difficulties that affect your studies and may show you some software and other technology but you will not have to do any tests. The Assessor will take notes to draft a report for you.

To download full information about the Staffordshire Regional Access Centre please see our Access Centre leaflet (PDF, file size: 322KB).

After your assessment

Your assessor will summarise the discussion and their recommendations in a report which will be sent to you within 10 working days of your appointment. 

  • You can opt to receive a draft copy of the Report to review and request amendments before it goes to your Funding Body.
  • Your funding body will receive a copy of your report which they will review and then write to you to advise you of what your entitlement is.

We will ask you to complete a short feedback survey when we send you your Report and another survey once you have started to access your support. We are always keen to improve the Assessment Centre and appreciate constructive feedback about how we can improve our Service.

We aim to ensure we deliver quality assured services, however, we recognise there may be occasions when these systems may not be sufficient to deal with problems that may occur from time to time.  In which case, you may want to make a formal complaint which you can do by following our Complaints Policy.

Reviewing your assessment

Your assessment fee is paid by DSA funding body.  This covers the costs of your original assessment and also any follow up work required including adjustments to your support.

You can request consideration for adjustments in your DSA support at any point during your studies.  You can do this via the telephone or via email, however if your request is particularly technical or detailed we might ask you to email the centre to ensure we cover all of your requirements. Depending on your circumstances, you may be eligible for a new assessment and we might direct you to your Funding Body to discuss this further.

Your Disability Coordinator at your place of study could also assist you in contacting the Assessment Centre.

If it is necessary to make additional recommendations to your Funding Body, we will make these in writing, and a copy of the recommendations will be sent to you and if you requested it, to your place of study. Your Funding Body will review the recommendations and advise you in writing of any entitlement to additional support.