Students with Disabilities: Your College Admission Guide

25 May 2020

Not to be surprised that modern education has changed for the better for people with disabilities. In particular, when applying for college, they don’t have to deal with the majority of obstacles that used to be quite a problem. For instance, the United Kingdom stood at the forefront of the battle for the rights of disabled people. Supporting students with disabilities is one of the public and private sector priorities there. Those with special needs make up for almost 14% of the entire student population in the UK. There is no reason why a disabled person would not want to apply for college. We decided to provide you with a comprehensive college admission guide for students with disabilities.

What Are Your Rights?

If you’re a student with a disability, needless to say, you have to be treated equally. The government is doing its best to take a proper care of your needs and educational endeavours, supplying you with additional legal perks like disability student allowance. Also, you have the right for simplified access to the study materials which might be presented to you in an alternative manner, depending on the type of disability you have.

Students with Disabilities: Your College Admission Guide

The UK is home to thousands of students from all over the world, and if you are a foreign student with disability, rest assured your rights will be held to the highest of standards in this country. Nonetheless, you will be deprived of access to governmental allowance and education funds. Also, you won’t be able to fill in DSA application to get access to disabled students' allowances.

Financial Regulations and Opportunities

When it comes to the financial part, you should get all the information you might need. As going through twice as much turmoil as ordinary students to earn your stripes, you should get your fair share of financial motivation from the government.

Funding for disabled students in further education varies in the UK from one member-state to another. The respective governments do not pay for your tuition but set the minimal tuition fee for the college to charge you with. For example, in England, the maximum tuition fee for students with disabilities is £9,250 per year for full-time undergraduate courses. If you live in Scotland, the colleges will also charge you no more than £9,250 per year. In Northern Ireland, you are expected to pay no more than £4,250. However, if you come from any other part of the UK, the standard fee of £9,250 might be applied. Finally, the maximum requirement in Wales reaches the point of £9,000, but you are allowed to a £1,000 annual non-means tested maintenance grant.

There is also a great number of special offers on loans available that can be quite handy. For instance, in England, you will start repaying your college loan in April following your graduation. Furthermore, your annual income must pass the threshold of £26,575. Only then will you start paying 9% of your income, meaning that if your salary is £30,575, you will be paying £4,000 a year, which is £300 per month. As you can see, there are a lot of options for you to make ends meet and obtain higher education eventually.

If you are willing to get more information on the funding options that you are entitled to in each of the four member-states in the United Kingdom, you can contact:

For England:

www.sfenglad.slc.co.uk

For Scotland:

www.saas.gov.uk

For Wales:

https://www.studentfinancewales.co.uk

For Northern Ireland:

https://www.studentfinanceni.co.uk

More Flexibility in Study Options

You should know that you are not required to apply for full-time studies. For example, if you are experiencing problems with commuting to the college building, you can opt for part-time, distance learning, or modular course. Let us break it down for you a little bit so that you would understand your options better.

Part-Time

If you feel like you want to be a part of the college community, but your transportation abilities are quite limited, you might opt to visit the college twice or thrice a semester for a period of one-two weeks to attend the lectures and pass the exams.

Distance Learning

Distance learning might also become a excellent option for you if you find it challenging to move around. It envisages an online-based education that offers you a full-fledged diploma at the very end of the program.

Modular Courses

If you want to take on your education one discipline at a time, opt for the modular course option and enjoy the stepwise process of turning into a professional that you deserve to be.

Choosing the Best College for Yourself

Before choosing the best college for yourself, you should take a deep interest in the accessibility programs and if they comply with your disability. We decided to group up some crucial questions for you to ask your college representative.

Choosing the Best College for Yourself

Your university or college may also be able to assign you a disability advisor, or even a local doctor if required.

Allowances for Students with Disabilities

Besides the limited tuition fees for disabled students, the UK government has also taken proper care of providing these students with additional payments that they can use to cover for whatever the student’s individual needs might be. By the way, the allowance amount is defined by the student’s individual needs, not by the general household income of his or her family.

Hence, in general, there are three major types of allowances that you are entitled to apply for. The first one is the special equipment allowance that envisages a one-time payment of £5,849 for the entire course. You can use it to pay for computers, any type of assistive hardware, or software that you require for dealing with your assignments efficiently.

Secondly, you can get an allowance for a non-medical helper, and it envisages payment of up to £23,258 per year. This type of allowance might be advantageous to students with disabilities that opt for full-time studies.

Finally, you can also apply for a general allowance that is represented with a single payment of £1,954. You are free to decide how you spend this money.

Personal Care and Support

We should understand that people with disabilities have exceptional requirements and needs. And it is our task to assist them in every way possible with the things that seem so easy for us but represent a daily challenge for different students. Disabled people might need an more support and personal help. So, never forget and never be afraid to ask them whether they need help with, for example, cooking, washing, using the toilet, taking medicine, etc.

Arriving at College

There is nothing too complicated to memorize and understand. Meet with the dorm manager and make sure that your room is on the ground floor and that you find it quite accessible. Furthermore, the room must be equipped following your requirements, which you shall send to college once you have been admitted. Get your library card and get to know your surroundings as this is the best way of succeeding.

Useful Resources for People with Disabilities

Below, you will find a list of resources that people with disabilities might find useful in many situations.

AbilityNet

Free-of-charge and up-to-date factsheets on how technologies might aid you in your educational endeavours.

www.abilitynet.org.uk/free-resources

Access to Higher Education

There are special requirements for university admission for students living with a disability.

www.accesstohe.ac.uk

Aim Higher

Fancy studying in the capital? The following is a searchable resource with all the information that you might need about universities in London.

http://disability-directory.aimhigherlondonsouth.org.uk

Student Finance

Get to know how to manage your finance and loan repayments easily.

www.gov.uk/student-finance

Erasmus

To get information about travelling and participating in exchange programs, make sure you check out the next resource.

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https://erasmusplus.org.uk

Conclusion

The UK government, along with the whole list of non-profitable organizations, are doing everything they can to ease the way students with disability have to take to obtain their diplomas. Hopefully, students with disabilities are going to get even more support in the future, and education in the UK will become the beacon of equality that will shine bright over the global system of education with a proper example to follow. Still, no one knows your needs better than you do, so make sure you get to ask questions about the infrastructure of campus in the college that you would like to apply for.

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