About needs assessments

What happens during the assessment?

Your assessment is a chance to discuss your disability and how it impacts on your studies. The assessor will ask you about your educational experiences, qualifications and the course you intend to study. This may be something to think about before your assessment, such as how effective your previous strategies were, any equipment/software you found helpful, etc. During the assessment you will be able to discuss and try out a range of IT equipment and software, as well as support strategies including specialist one to one support, note taking and IT training.

How long will the assessment take?

The assessment could last up to 2 hours. You will not have to do any tests during the assessment.

What happens after my needs assessment?

The assessor will write a Needs Assessment report based on the medical evidence, the questionnaire you completed before the assessment and the discussion had during the assessment. This will be completed within 10 working days of your assessment.

We will send the report to you and student finance, if you prefer you can ask to see a draft of the report before we send it to Student Finance. If you disagree with any of the recommendations or would like anything changed, please contact the Assessment Centre. Changes will generally be made within 1 working day or as soon as possible depending on what is required. We will keep you fully informed of the timescales required.

Once the report has been sent to Student Finance they will contact you regarding the purchase of any equipment/support. This is a DSA2 letter, it confirms what support has been agreed and who the suppliers are.

If you have not received a DSA2 letter within 4 weeks of your Assessment please contact the your funding body to check progress. You can also contact the Assessment Centre for help with this if you prefer. ​

What if I disagree with the recommendations?

If you are dissatisfied with any aspect of your assessment please contact your assessor in the first instance:

Phone: 02920 205547

You can also call into the Centre within Student Services. 

We also comply with the institutional complaints procedure.

How will payments be made?

Your funding body will write​ to you to tell you how to order your equipment, some funding bodies will order it for you, others will tell you which supplier to order from.  

General allowance items will be refunded from your funding body on submission of receipts along with a 'reimbursement claims' form. The needs assessment fee is inclusive from the dur​ation of your studies and paid for from your DSA.

​Can I keep my equipment when my course ends?

Any equipment purchased through the DSA is your property and will remain yours when you have completed your course.​

Data Retention and Records Management Procedure

Download the proce​dure - English

This covers:

  • data we gather

  • how we retain data

  • how data is stored

  • how long data is retained for

  • how data is disposed of.