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DEMOS Project

Online Materials for Staff Disability Awareness
[Modules] : Admissions

Pre-entry information

There are a variety of means by which potential students acquire information about their intended place of study. Here, we examine three important sources that disabled students may use in order to assess the suitability of a university.

Prospectuses/Course information

The prospectus is still the primary means by which students find out information about the university. As with all text documents it is important to consider the need for copies to be available in alternative formats. [?]

It is also worth considering representation of disabled students in the prospectus. A photograph along with a small account or a quote might be appropriate. Try not to stereotype disability as just meaning someone in a wheelchair or someone who is blind. There are also a large number of disabled students in HE who could be included but whose disability is hidden e.g. deaf students, dyslexia, back pain sufferers.

If you produce information on a specific course separate to the prospectus, such as leaflets and booklets, it is a good idea to follow the advice discussed above.

Disability Statements

In 1995 the Disability Discrimination Act required universities and further education colleges to write disability statements [?]. These are intended to give disabled students a clear picture of the services available for them in each HEI. Many universities send copies of the disability statement to all applicants who indicate a disability. Although the new SEN and Disability Act no longer requires universities to produce statements, many still use the format because it provides a convenient guide for students.

Other sources

Skill Guide to HE
http://www.skill.org.uk/into_he/index.htm [External link: Open in new browser window]
Each year Skill, the National Bureau for Students with Disabilities produces a guide for students about the support available at each HEI. Skill requests a brief account from each disability office.
http://www.unofficial-guides.com/ [External link: Open in new browser window]
This guide has been written by students for students. Some of the information might be a little bit inaccurate but it is important to see a resource that isn't produced by the marketing department of a university.

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