ASSIST-TECH: DSA Study Aids and Study Strategies Assessor ("Needs Assessor") Resources.


'Laptop tax' for disabled people.
In 2014 the coalition government decided that students receiving a computer from DSA should contribute £200 towards the cost. Many non-disabled students who are not able to buy a computer can rely on campus-based computer resources, but disabled people in the same position are forced to buy a computer if they want to perform to the best of their ability but their disability means they  cannot spend long periods on campus outside time-tabled taught sessions (e.g. due to pain, fatigue, frequent ill health etc). This seems incredibly unfair.

Some universities are trying to help by offering access to funding to help cover this cost. Here is a link to a site that is trying to gather up information about which universities are offering help.

£200 shortfall and MS Office info.

If you are thinking of apply for support from DSA please do not let this put you off. Funding is currently still available to help with some of the computer costs along with specialist software and other strategies you might need. Given the current track record there is no guarantee this will continue, so do not delay your application!


DSA for students beginning in the 2015-16 academic year.


Type of student

Specialist equipment allowance

Non-medical helper allowance

General allowance


Up to £5,212 for the whole course

Up to £20,725 a year

Up to £1,741 a year


Up to £5,212 for the whole course

Up to £15,543 a year

Up to £1,305 a year


A single allowance of up to £10,362 a year

(Travel continues to be effectively unlimed for undergraduate, part of the allowance for postgraduate).

Major changes for 2015-16:-

Full guidance (in its current form April 2015). This is supposed to be the final version but given the current circumstances be sure to check for any updates to this guidance.

DSA 2014-15.

Non-medical helper £20,725 (max PT £15,543)
Specialist equipment £5,212 
General Allowance £1,741 (max PT £1,305 - calcuated based on FTE after assessment fee is deducted)
Postgraduate students: may be eligible for one allowance of up to £10,260 per year to meet all costs for both full-time and part-time courses.

DSA Petrol Allowance (single journey): (£0.29 X miles) - public transport cost.
NOTE 2015-16 
DSA Petrol Allowance (single journey): (£0.24 X miles) - public transport cost.

NMH Rates, Sources and Calculations.

DSA Practitioner Updates.

Disability Evidence and Definition.


Taxi companies with capability to set up a DSA account (April 2015).
World Taxi Meter to calculate estimated travel costs by taxi.
TransportDirect for distance by car and public transport routes.
TFL (London) for single ticket costs.
TravelLine for national public transport routes and links to operators.
For students who are not automatically eligible for public transport concessions, this guidance document might indicate if they could be eligible for discretionary travel support.
Freedom Pass info (Greater London).

Student Advice, Reasonable Adjustments and HEI Responsibilities.

Disability Rights UK Advice.

Advice and Info from the NUS.
Adjustments for Disabled Students - Disability Rights UK.
ECU Equality Legislation.
EHRC Disabled Students and Learners in Post-16 Education.

Resolving Equipment Issues.

Equipment suppliers:
check supplier QAF

Advising on non-DSA matters.

Independent benefits advice:
DIAL Network.

Are you looking to arrange a London DSA Assessment? Follow this link.

Learning and Development: Podcasts.

BBC In Touch Podcast.
Assistive Technology Update Podcast.


2010/11 DSA amounts summary.
2010/11 DSA guidance summary.
Full govt. guidance (Doc) 2010/11.
Education (Student Support) Regulations 2009 (DSA Section).