This article provides information on reasonable adjustments that can be made to reduce any potential impacts that a student’s disability may have upon their examinations and assessment.

Principals of Higher Education and assessment

The University’s teaching is aimed at introducing and developing your learning skills alongside the specific subject matter to which these skills can be applied – i.e. ‘how to think and where to look things up’. We aim to provide you with strategies to use independently for lifelong learning and the workplace.

The assessment process allows you to demonstrate the application of these skills and the associated subject-specific knowledge.

Reasonable adjustments 

The University's procedures have been developed, as far as possible, to avoid placing disabled students at a disadvantage. If required, reasonable adjustments are made to allow individuals opportunity to demonstrate their ability. These adjustments can apply to teaching and assessment processes. Examples might include:

  • Provision of extra time or access to assistive technology/software during timed assessments
  • Course materials in alternative formats
  • Timetabling adjustments to facilitate access
  • Access to relevant assistive technology and/or specialist support to develop study strategies.

Assessment Outcomes

Reasonable adjustments do not apply to the learning outcomes or competence standards. For this reason, the University will not provide:

  • A ‘Two-Tier’ or ‘Sympathetic’ marking: Work will be marked against the same academic standards as all other students.
  • A Proof-reading service: The expectation is that all submitted work will be entirely your own. You will be taught relevant study skills techniques enable you to proof-read your own work.
  • Automatic extensions to coursework deadlines due to a Disability[*]: Support with developing time-management skills and a planned approach to study are provided instead.

In exceptional cases, the University may explore structural adjustment to the course delivery and assessment. This may include a reduced pace of study or alternative methods of assessment. These adjustment must be approved in advance and still allow the individual to demonstrate the core competence/professional standards required for the course.

[*] Although disability does not apply to the University’s Extenuating Circumstances (EC) framework, if you do experience an unforeseen worsening of your condition that affects your ability to complete work on time or to sit an assessment then you will be eligible for consideration under EC rules.

Need more information?

The Additional Support and Disability Advice Centre (ASDAC) can offer advice and guidance regarding reasonable adjustments.  If you have further questions, you can find our contact details on the following link: ASDAC contact details 


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