Who Can Receive DSA?

University is a massive change in your life. New digs, new people and a new schedule—there’s a lot to take in! We understand how daunting this transition can be, especially if you have a disability or an illness.

Don’t fear — these days, most universities offer disability support, so if you do have a condition, such as dyslexia, you can get the relevant provisions through Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSA).

What is Disabled Students’ Allowance?dyslexia awareness

DSA is a fantastic scheme funded by the government that offers grants to a range of people who have learning or physical disabilities or health problems. These grants can help fund your needs while at university and they can cover a new Mac or PC, printers, headphones that include noise-cancelling features, top-of-the-range note-taking equipment that can record and organise your lectures plus an array of cutting-edge software and the latest apps.


So, applying for DSA is worth it, right?


Before you apply, it’s important to find out if you are entitled, so below we have created a guide to the different conditions that can receive DSA.


Dyslexia is one of the most common learning disabilities that people face in the UK today. Usual symptoms include: difficulty reading, writing or spelling, poor handwriting and phonological skills, problems with short-term memory and organisational skills.


Dyspraxia is a condition that’s often associated with dyslexia and it affects the person’s spatial and coordination skills, which include difficulty with typing, handwriting and drawing and the individual can struggle constructing essays and analysing complex visual arrays, e.g. multiple choice questions.


People who suffer with dyscalculia will have difficulty understanding maths concepts, such as quantity, values, carrying and borrowing and the relationship between numbers. Usually, this condition is associated with dyslexia and dyspraxia and there is a wide range of support and assistive technology that can help.

Visual Stress

People who suffer from visual stress have difficulty focusing and reading documents. With people who have visual stress, they may find that that they lose their place when reading, that the print “jumps” around and patterns are hard to look at.

Visual Impairments

If the individual suffers from blindness or visual impairments that can cause difficulties within daily activities, such as reading and writing, there are a wide range of support and assistive technology, such as speech recognition tools that can help you write essays and fill in forms, or our high visibility keyboards, which can help make writing easier.

Attention Deficit Disorder

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) is also associated with dyspraxia, as the individual with the condition has a short attention span and can be impulsive, have trouble staying motivated and easily stressed out.

There are other disabilities and conditions that you can claim DSA for, such as: hearing impairments, mental health conditions like anxiety or depression or long term health conditions, such as chronic heart disease or HIV.

It’s important that you read our next blog post, as we will be looking at the process of claiming DSA, so you can have an informative guide on what to expect.

For more information on our range of assistive technology and training, take a look at our website or ring us on 01223 420 101.

7 thoughts on “Who Can Receive DSA?”

  1. Pingback: How Do I Claim DSA? | Dyslexic.com

  2. I am currently supporting an 8 year old girl who has dyslexia but not had a clear diagnoses of this.
    She is a very intelligent little girls but is currently in a learning base class due to her difficulties and is receiving relevant support as her teacher also feels she has dyslexia.
    I am looking to purchase a talking pen. Could I apply for a grant on her behalf?
    Many thanks

    1. Catherine Smith

      Hi Lynne,

      Thanks for getting in contact. Unfortunately, in primary and secondary education there is little support concerning grants and usually a school’s SENCO may be able to help and find the right provision. We’ve also had parents who have raised funds for specific equipment. It’s not until students get to higher education such as university that they are eligible to receive a Disabled Students Allowance that covers equipment, software and support.

      If you have any more questions, please feel free to email me (Catherine) or ring on 01223 420 101.


  3. Hi, quick question.

    I am currently in year 12, am dyslexic and am in need of a new laptop for school.

    Firstly, am I elligble for DSA? and is there any funding the school should provide me.


    1. Catherine Smith

      Hi Ethan,

      Thanks for getting in touch. If you are going into university, you will more than likely be eligible for DSA however you won’t receive it until your first term of university.

      I’ll send you an email with further details.

      Many thanks,

  4. I want to do a Forensic Psychology degree with the Open University. I am just finishing a 24 yr career in the military and I am servery dyslexic. Am I eligible?, and is there an age restriction?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get in touch

Whether you need additional help or would like to discuss a solution just for you.

Shopping Basket
Scroll to Top
Skip to content