General information about Access West of England

Information about Access West of England

Disabled Students' Allowances are funding to help meet the extra course costs students can face as a direct result of a disability, ongoing health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty (such as dyslexia).

This funding helps disabled people to study in higher education on an equal basis with other students and is paid on top of the standard student finance package. The amount you receive depends on the type of extra help you need – not on your household income.

Study Needs Assessment video

This Student Finance England provides a straightforward overview of Study Needs Assessments. You can also find out more information about the Study Needs Assessment below. 

The Study Needs Assessment

The Study Needs Assessment, which takes about two hours, is an informal and confidential discussion about your study needs in relation to your course. It provides you with an opportunity to discuss any issues or concerns you may have in full.

The assessor will explore with you a range of study strategies which may be relevant. During the Study Needs Assessment you will have the opportunity to try out specialist equipment which may be appropriate to your needs.

To find out if you need disability-related study support, you will need to be assessed. Access West of England on Frenchay campus carries out these specialist assessments for both applicants and students who are funded through the Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs).

Your Study Needs Assessor will cover a full range of disability issues and will be able to recommend any specialist software or equipment that you may need.

Our assessment fee is £600, which your funding body covers via your Disabled Students’ Allowances. This covers both your initial assessment and review or updates to your Disabled Students’ Allowances that you may need throughout your studies. We can also review your needs if you move on to further courses of study.

However, if you present with an additional diagnosis, move on to PGCE or postgraduate research, have a break of two years or more in your studies or if it is more than five years since your last Study Needs Assessment, you will be eligible for a funded review of your needs which we can carry out. All reviews must be authorised in writing by the funding body.

Our team of assessors:

  • have a comprehensive understanding of higher education issues
  • assess a full range of impairments and disability issues
  • have an up-to-date knowledge of a wide range of specialist equipment to support disabled learners
  • are trained to work within DSA guidelines.

Our team of administrators:

  • help guide students through the process
  • deal with all bookings and general enquiries
  • gather and disseminate relevant paperwork.

Contact AWE

Telephone: +44 (0)117 32 83396
Email: or use the AWE enquiry form
Visit: Room 2P39 on Frenchay Campus

Back to top