Six steps you need to follow.

Step 1: Fill in the DSA application form

Complete and send the relevant DSA 1 form to start the process, informing Student Finance England that you wish support. The strength of your application can be enhanced by providing evidence from a health care professional.

If you believe that you have a learning disability, you need to complete a “post 16 diagnostic report.” This can be done through a chartered or practitioner psychologist, or a specialist teacher with an Assessment Practicing Certificate.

Please complete one of these forms:

  • DSA 1 “Short” form – if you are also applying for DSA and other student finance.
  • DSA 1 “Full” form – if you are ONLY applying for DSA or you are a part-time, post-graduate or distance learning student.

Step 2: Find out if you are eligible

When Student Finance England (SFE) receives your application, they will consider all the information that you have provided and will send you a letter informing you whether you have qualified for the DSA. You should receive this letter about 2 weeks after the SFE receive your application.

Step 3: Attend a “Needs Assessment”

When you have received confirmation that you are eligible for a DSA grant, you will need to arrange a “Needs Assessment”. Your needs assessment will identify the support that you require, whether it be in the form of specialist equipment and software or any other support. It is not a test- more of a chat with a professional to see how the DSA can best help you in your studies. The meeting can last one to two hours.

You can find your nearest assessment centre by visiting the National Network of Assessment Centres.

Step 4: Your needs assessment report

After your needs assessment you will receive a report informing you of:

  • Your recommended support
  • How much it will cost
  • Where to get your support

Student Finance England will also receive a copy of your Needs Assessment report.

Step 5: Find out how much the DSA can pay

You will receive a letter from Student Finance England informing you whether they will fund the recommendations in your Needs Assessment report with a partial or full award.

You will now be able to place your order with the recommended supplier.

Take a look at “Place your order,” to see the process for ordering and receiving your solution.

Step 6:

The final step is Student Finance England paying for your solution directly to the approved supplier with the possibility of a £200 contribution from you.