Information about Disabilities and Specific Learning Difficulties

This page provides basic information about and links to further resources on disabilities and medical conditions. For further information see our SCIPs webpages. 

What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a specific learning difficulty which mainly affects the development of literacy and language related skills. It is likely to be present at birth and to be lifelong in its effects. It is characterised by difficulties with phonological processing, rapid naming, working memory, processing speed, and the automatic development of skills that may not match up to an individual’s other cognitive abilities. It tends to be resistant to conventional teaching methods, but its effects can be mitigated by appropriately specific intervention, including the application of information technology and supportive counselling.

(British Dyslexia Association October 2007)

Examples of Support Available to students with dyslexia at the University of Worcester

  • Access to a dyslexia assessment service
  • Assistance with applications for the Disabled Students Allowance (DSA)
  • 1-to-1 specialist academic support sessions tailored to meet individual need
  • Extra time allowance in exams
  • Option to record lectures
  • Loan of computer equipment and specialist software if needed

Additional information and useful website(s)

The SCIPS web resource provides Strategies for Creating Inclusive programmes of study.  Searchable by disability and/or subject. https://scips.worc.ac.uk/

Nursing Student Leaflet – this is an on-line account from a nursing student from the University of Worcester.  Based on her own experience, she gives tips and strategies on how to manage on your nursing work placement if you have dyslexia.

The British Dyslexia Association
Offers support and advice for people with dyslexia.
www.bdadyslexia.org.uk

University of Worcester Study Skills Resources and workshops are available to all students throughout the academic year.  More information can be found on their web pages.

Contact details for the University’s Disability and Dyslexia Service

Address
Disability and Dyslexia Service
University of Worcester
Henwick Grove
Worcester
WR2 6AJ

Tel  01905 542551

E-mail disability@worc.ac.uk

What is Dyspraxia?

Developmental dyspraxia is an impairment or immaturity of the organisation of movement. It is an immaturity in the way that the brain processes information, which results in messages not being properly or fully transmitted. The term dyspraxia comes from the word praxis, which means 'doing, acting'.  Dyspraxia affects the planning of what to do and how to do it. It is associated with problems of perception, language and thought.

Dyspraxia is thought to affect up to ten per cent of the population and up to two per cent severely.  Males are four times more likely to be affected than females.  Dyspraxia sometimes runs in families. There may be an overlap with related conditions.

Examples of Support Available to students with dyspraxia at the University of Worcester

Assistance with applications for the Disabled Students Allowance

1-to-1 specialist academic support sessions tailored to meet individual need

Extra time allowance in exams 

Option to record lectures 

Loan of computer equipment and specialist software if needed

Additional information and useful website(s)

The SCIPS web resource provides Strategies for Creating Inclusive programmes of study.  Searchable by disability and/or subject. https://scips.worc.ac.uk/

The Dyspraxia Foundation.  This organisation offers support and advice to people with dyspraxia.

http://www.dyspraxiafoundation.org.uk

Contact details for the University’s Disability and Dyslexia Service

Address

Disability and Dyslexia Service

University of Worcester

Henwick Grove

Worcester

WR2 6AJ

Tel  01905 542551

E-mail disability@worc.ac.uk


What is Autism/Asperger Syndrome?

Asperger Syndrome is a form of autism, which is a lifelong disability that affects how a person makes sense of the world, processes information and relates to other people.  Autism is often described as a 'spectrum disorder' because the condition affects people in many different ways and to varying degrees.

Asperger syndrome is mostly a 'hidden disability'. This means that you can't tell that someone has the condition from their outward appearance.  People with the condition tend to have difficulties in three main areas:

  • Social interaction – difficulty with social relationships, e.g. appearing aloof and indifferent to others
  • Social communication – difficulty with verbal and non-verbal communication, e.g. not fully understanding the meaning of common gestures, facial expressions or tone of voice
  • Imagination - difficulty in the development of interpersonal skills and imagination, e.g. having a limited range of imaginative abilities, possibly copied and pursued rigidly and repetitively
While there are similarities with autism, people with Asperger syndrome have fewer problems with speaking and are often of average, or above average, intelligence. They do not usually have the accompanying learning disabilities associated with autism, but they may have specific learning difficulties. These may include dyslexia and dyspraxia or other conditions such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and epilepsy.

With the right support and encouragement, people with Asperger syndrome can lead full and independent lives.

(Extracts taken from The National Autistic Society and SCIPS websites - 2017)

Examples of support available to students with Aspergers at the University of Worcester

  • Assistance with applications for the Disabled Students Allowance
  • Opportunity to attend a university induction a few days early in a small group environment
  • 1-to-1 specialist academic support sessions tailored to meet individual need
  • Extra time allowance in exams
  • Loan of computer equipment if needed

Additional information and useful website(s)


The SCIPS web resource provides Strategies for Creating Inclusive programmes of study.  Searchable by disability and/or subject. https://scips.worc.ac.uk/

The National Autistic Society website is very useful as it includes extensive information about autism and Asperger syndrome and the services available.
http://www.nas.org.uk/asperger

Contact details for the University’s Disability and Dyslexia Service

Address
Disability and Dyslexia Service
University of Worcester
Henwick Grove
Worcester
WR2 6AJ

Tel  01905 542551

E-mail  disability@worc.ac.uk

Epilepsy and Student Life

Becoming a student and entering further or higher education is a really exciting time, full of new experiences. It may be the first time a student has lived away from home. For students with epilepsy it is important that they manage their condition to ensure they get the most out of their time at university whilst remaining as safe as possible.

The University of Worcester welcomes disabled students including those experiencing seizures. This leaflet outlines the support that the University is able to provide and the important steps you need to take.

The way in which epilepsy affects different people can vary. The type of seizures people get can differ as can the triggers. Some people may have side effects from medication such as concentration difficulties or drowsiness, as well as after effects from a seizure which can impact on their studies for a time.

Possible Support Available:

The Disability and Dyslexia Service has a team of Disability Advisers who can discuss how your epilepsy or non-epileptic seizures affects you and explain what support arrangements may be suitable, for example, notifying staff what to do when you have a seizure.

Our aim is to give you a safe environment in which to study.

Other types of support could include: -

  • Ground floor accommodation with shower instead of a bath
  • Consideration for exam arrangements
  • First aid assistance (response times cannot be guaranteed)
  • Rest room on St John’s campus (the room is not monitored so please ensure you are safe e.g. take a friend or tell someone where you are)
  • A mental health and counselling service.
  • Assistance to disclose to friends and others within the University.
  • Disabled Students Allowance may be available to help meet your needs.

There is also a lot of help and advice regarding life at university available from other organisations such as Young Epilepsy. This includes useful information and advice on telling friends, going out, sleep and stress.

What we need you to do:

We strongly encourage you to disclose your epilepsy or seizures. Please note disclosing does not impact on the admission making decision.

We will ask you to provide us with medical evidence outlining the impact of seizures, day and night, including, wherever possible, the strategies you use to manage their impact. We also need to be aware of any side effects from medication or other treatments.

Contact the Disability and Dyslexia Service (contacts below) to discuss support possibilities.

Useful Contacts:

University of Worcester Disability and Dyslexia Service

Tel: 01905 542551

Email: firstpoint@worc.ac.uk

Website: www.worcester.ac.uk/student-services/disability-and-dyslexia

Young Epilepsy

Helpline: 01342 831342

Email: helpline@youngepilepsy.org.uk

Website: www.youngepilepsy.org.uk/for-young-people/support-for-students

National Union of Students (NUS)

Website: www.nus.org.uk

Disabled Students Allowance

Website: www.gov.uk/disabled-students-allowances-dsas

What are Physical Difficulties?

Physical disabilities affecting students can take many different forms. They can be temporary or permanent, fluctuating, stable or degenerative, and may affect parts of the body or the whole of it. They can affect mobility, dexterity speed and stamina e.g. chronic fatigue syndrome.

Examples of support available to students with physical difficulties at the University of Worcester

Assistance with applications for the Disabled Students Allowance

Accessible en-suite accommodation on campus with level access showers equipped for wheelchair users

Adjacent rooms in halls of residence for personal assistants (funded by the student’s Social Services) 

Where possible, teaching rooms located centrally to reduce the distance between teaching sessions

Personal Emergency Evacuation Plans (PEEPs) to assist students egress during emergencies 

Blue badge parking spaces for disabled students and visitors 

Wheelchair accessible toilets situated in all main buildings

Dropped kerbs on all main routes around the campus

Automatic doors  throughout most main routes of the campus

Use of voice dictation software

Trolley bags to carry books and materials

Ergonomic seating and workstations (through Disabled Students Allowance)

Support workers to assist with note taking and accessing resources within the library

Additional information and useful website(s)

The SCIPS web resource provides Strategies for Creating Inclusive programmes of study.  Searchable by disability and/or subject. https://scips.worc.ac.uk/

Scope is a UK organisation with a focus on support for people with Cerebral Palsy

http://www.scope.org.uk/information/ 

The NHS gives information on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. 

www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Chronic-fatigue-syndrome 

The Spinal Injury Association is an organisation giving support and advice to people with spinal injuries

http://www.spinal.co.uk/ 

Contact details for the University’s Disability and Dyslexia Service

Address

Disability and Dyslexia Service

University of Worcester

Henwick Grove

Worcester

WR2 6AJ

Tel  01905 542551

E-mail  disability@worc.ac.uk


What is ADHD?


Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is characterised by distinct behaviour, specifically inattention, hyperactivity and impulsiveness or a combination of these.

Symptoms of ADHD in adults might include:

  • Good negotiating skills
  • Continually starting new tasks before finishing old ones
  • Poor organisational skills
  • Creative, inventive, innovative and divergent thinkers
  • Mood swings
  • Inability to focus or prioritise
  • Willingness to take risks but might do so without considering consequences
  • Difficulty keeping quiet and speaking out of turn
  • Difficulty meeting assignment deadlines, revising and engaging in examinations
  • Adapting to and navigating new environments
  • May be associated with feelings of depression
  • Keen to take part
  • Sharp observational skills but can nevertheless lack attention to detail

Examples of support available to students with ADHD at the University of Worcester

  • Assistance (as appropriate) to apply for Disabled Students Allowance which will enable students to access a whole range of support, including the support mentioned below plus equipment
  • 1-to-1 specialist academic tutorial support
  • Access to a qualified Mental Health Advisor
  • Assistance with note-taking in lectures and seminars
  • Alternative arrangements in exams
  • Invitation to an early 2-day induction to assist in the transition to university

Additional information and useful website(s)


The SCIPS web resource provides Strategies for Creating Inclusive programmes of study.  Searchable by disability and/or subject. https://scips.worc.ac.uk/

Adult Attention Deficit Disorder – UK
This organisation describes itself as the ‘one stop shop for anything relating to adult ADHD in the UK’
https://aadduk.org/

ADDISS: The National Attention Deficit Disorder Information and Support Service.
Provides information and resources about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
http://www.addiss.co.uk

Contact details for the University’s Disability and Dyslexia Service

Address
Disability and Dyslexia Service
University of Worcester
Henwick Grove
Worcester
WR2 6AJ

Tel  01905 542551

E-mail  disability@worc.ac.uk

Contact us

We meet with students in a confidential space in firstpoint.  To book a Disability Advisor appointment please contact or visit firstpoint, which is open Monday to Friday 9:00am - 4:00pm, and is situated in the Peirson Study and Guidance Centre on St Johns Campus.  

Telephone: 01905 542551    Email: firstpoint@worc.ac.uk

To contact the team directly please email disability@worc.ac.uk or telepone 01905 855531

We are also on Twitter  https://twitter.com/UoWDDS

A detailed access guide to the Peirson Centre can be found on AccessAble.co.uk