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Frequently Asked Questions

Will I be tested?
No.
How do I make an appointment?
See Making an appointment.
How long will the assessment take?
Assessments typically last between 1.5 - 2.5 hours but depending on the impact of one's condition and what is discussed and demonstrated, may occasionally be longer or shorter.
Do I need to bring anything?
See Preparing for appointment.
What happens in my assessment?
See About the assessment.
Is the assessment a one off or will I need to make further appointments?
Assessors aim to make recommendations to provide suitable support for the duration of the student's course. However, for students who don't know exactly how they will fare with new course demands, or if a new condition develops or one worsens, there is the opportunity to approach the assessment centre at a later date to review the recommended support.
In some cases students will be advised by an assessor to make appointments with a support provider. For example, a dyslexia support tutor, or an ophthalmic optician if visual sensitivity testing is recommended. You are strongly recommended to make an appointment with your Disability Advisor to discuss the recommendations made for academic support in your assessment report, and to finalise arrangements for examinations and co-workers etc.
What is DSA?
See the information on the Direct Gov website.
Can I bring a companion?
Students are predominantly assessed on a 1-1 basis. To prevent distraction and others answering questions on the behalf of the individual being assessed, admission of children or relatives is discouraged, though this may be possible in extreme circumstances at the discretion of the assessor. Exceptions to this include when communication or mentor support is necessary. The needs assessment report will reflect the discussion that occurs during the assessment and list the items being recommended so there is no need for the individual to remember everything that is said in the assessment.
How soon will I receive equipment?
Based upon the assessment centre despatching your report within 10 working days, prompt delivery/return of correspondence, the funding body processing the report within 2 weeks, prompt placement of the order and supplier despatch times of approximately 10 working days, you should receive equipment within 7 weeks of your assessment date.
What happens after my assessment?
See What happens after my assessment.
Will I get equipment before I start my course?
Possibly; for students who have yet to enrol on their chosen degree, your funding body is likely to request evidence that you have been accepted on your degree before they permit items to be ordered.
In the event that your condition is such that it is vital support is in place from day one of your course, or you require time before embarking on your course to become familiar with adaptive aids, such circumstances may be sufficient for your funding body to permit DSA funds to be released earlier than would usually be the case.
Can I have training in course related software, for example, Photoshop?
DSA can only be used to fund training in adaptive aids and assistive technology. It does not cover training in course specialist software.