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Disabled Students' Allowance

Cover any extra study costs relating to a disability

If you have a disability, mental health issue or long-term illness, you can apply for Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) to cover the extra study costs relating to your disability.

For example, you can use it to help with:

  • travel costs
  • a non-medical helper to assist you with academic needs
  • specialist equipment like a computer

To apply for DSA, you need to be a UK student studying an undergraduate or postgraduate degree. If you’re studying part-time, you need to be studying the equivalent of 25% of a full-time course (for example, 30 credits a year on an undergraduate Bachelor’s degree course).

The amount you get is based on your needs, not your income. It doesn’t cover costs that aren’t related to your study.

DSA maximum allowances for 2021/2022

From 2021/22 a single Disabled Students’ Allowance of up to £25,000 is being introduced for new and continuing full time and part-time undergraduate and postgraduate students. This will replace the four DSA sub-allowances currently available. An exception for travel costs will be made to this maximum cap, which means that travel costs will in effect be uncapped.

How to apply for DSA

You can apply for DSA as part of your application when you apply for student finance through Student Finance England.

If you’re not applying for student finance, you can ask for a paper application form.

It can take up to 3 months to process your application and arrange for an assessment, so apply as soon as you can.

Further help and support if you have a disability

You can also get help and support from our Additional Support and Disability Advice Centre (ASDAC), who can offer advice once you start university and help with your DSAs application.

The ASDAC team supports all students who have a condition which may impact on their ability to access our campus, curriculum, teaching, learning, assessments and any other student-focused service.

The services and support ASDAC offer includes:

  • Confidential advice from disability professionals for all students UK, EU and International
  • Advice on funding to cover disability-related support costs (this may include the Disabled Students’ Allowance but we have access to additional funding mechanisms)
  • Discussion and agreement on reasonable adjustments
  • Liaison with other University services and facilities eg. Library
  • Sign posting for note-taking, mentoring and other academic support services
  • Specialist study skills tuition and Assistive Technology training
  • Screening for Specific Learning Difficulties such as dyslexia
  • Liaison with external services eg. Autism Hampshire, Clear Links

To contact the ASDAC team, email asdac@port.ac.uk or call +44 (0)23 9284 3462.

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