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Disability Support Services - Frequently Asked Questions

   

Q. I have a disability. How do I apply to study at DIT?

School-leavers with a disability applying for full-time undergraduate programmes at DIT should apply via the Central Applications Office (CAO), indicating on their application that they have a disability or specific learning difficulty. DIT is a member of the Disability Access Route to Education (DARE) Scheme. For more information, see our Admissions & DARE page. 

Mature students with disabilities (i.e. at least 23 years of age on the 1st January of the proposed year of entry) cannot apply through the DARE Scheme but should apply through the CAO via the Mature Student route.

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Q. Should I disclose my disability to DIT?

Yes, the Disability Support Services (DSS) team is there to support you. By disclosing your disability it means that you will be assisted in accessing a range of reasonable supports to enable you to successfully complete your course.  However, the choice to disclose is entirely up to you. If you do not make the DSS aware of your disability, we may not be able to provide you with the support you need.

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Q. How do I register with the Disability Support Service?

Services are for all students with a disability, including, but not limited, to the following:

  • Deaf/Hard of Hearing
  • Visually Impaired / Blind
  • Specific Learning Difficulties (such as Dyslexia)
  • Physical Disabilities
  • Significant Ongoing Illnesses
  • Mental Health Conditions
  • ADD/ADHD
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (including Asperger's Syndrome)
  • Neurological Conditions (such as Epilepsy)
  • Speech & Language Impairments
  • Developmental Co-ordination Disorder (Dyspraxia)

If you require assistance for a disability or specific learning difficulty, you should register with Disability Support Services as soon as possible; the initial point of contact should be made via the Disability Office at 01 220 5008/5097or email disability@dit.ie.

You will then be assigned a Learning Support Officer and Assistive Technology Officer who will work with you to assess the level of support required.

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Q. What evidence of my disability do I need to provide?

In order to avail of reasonable accommodations and/or auxiliary aids, students with a disability must provide evidence of disability/supporting documentation from an acceptable professional source or specialist.

This evidence should be signed and stamped by the relevant professional and submitted to your Learning Support Officer before any reasonable accommodations and/or auxiliary aids can be put in place.

Documentation or letters of support from a General Practitioner (GP) are not considered to be an acceptable evidence of disability and will not be accepted as such.

The table below gives an indication of the accepted professional sources/specialists for each category of disability and is based on the eligibility criteria for the Disability Access Route to Education (DARE).  

Disability CategoryAccepted Specialist
Acceptable Professional Sources/Specialists

Autism Spectrum Disorders


Appropriately qualified Psychiatrist OR Psychologist OR Neurologist OR Paediatrician (for under-18s) who is a member of his or her professional or regulatory body


ADD/ADHD


Appropriately qualified Psychiatrist OR Psychologist OR Neurologist OR Paediatrician (for under-18s) who is a member of his or her professional or regulatory body


Blind/Vision Impaired


Ophthalmologist, Ophthalmic Surgeon OR other relevant specialist or consultant


Deaf/Hearing Impaired


(A) Applicants who have an audiogram: Professionally Qualified Audiologist

(B) Applicants who attend a School for the Deaf: Principal of School for the Deaf

(C) Applicants with a Cochlear Implant: Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT) Consultant OR Cochlear Implant Programme Coordinator


DCD – Dyspraxia/Dysgraphia


Psycho-educational assessment completed by an appropriately qualified psychologist AND a report from an Occupational Therapist OR Neurologist who is a member of their respective professional or regulatory body.


Mental Health Conditions


Psychiatrist


Neurological Conditions


Neurologist OR other relevant specialist or consultant


Speech & Language Disabilities


Speech & Language Therapist


Physical Disabilities


Orthopaedic Consultant OR other relevant Consultant appropriate to the disability/condition.


Significant Ongoing Illnesses


Diabetes Type 1: Endocrinologist or Paediatrician (for under-18s)

Cystic Fibrosis (CF): Consultant Respiratory Physician or Paediatrician (for under-18s)

Gastric Conditions: Gastroenterologist

Others: Relevant specialist or consultant in the area of the condition.


Specific Learning Difficulties


Appropriately qualified psychologist

  

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Q. What financial Information is available to me?

The HEA's Student Finance website is www.studentfinance.ie and applications for SUSI Grants can be made online at www.susi.ie.

Student Finance brings together comprehensive and user-friendly information on the range of financial support programmes available in further and higher education. It is designed to help users to quickly and conveniently identify the various sources of financial support that they may be eligible for and how they might apply. It is a valuable information resource for students, future students, their families and those who provide advice and guidance.

If a student has appropriate supporting documentation, the service can apply for funding from the ESF Fund for Students with Disabilities. This fund is allocated to DIT to enable the provision of appropriate supports to eligible students. Information here at www.studentfinance.ie

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Q. Can DIT guarantee my privacy?

Any information that you provide to the Disability Support Services (DSS) will remain confidential. It is important to remember, however, that the DSS cannot provide support in isolation. With your permission, information will be disclosed solely for the purpose of arranging the necessary support for you. For more information, see our page on confidentiality.

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Q. What services and support are offered to students with disabilities?

Every student with a disability in DIT has access to a wide range of reasonable supports and services. These are based on each student’s individual needs.

Click on the links below to find out more information on the support that we can provide:

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Q. What support is available for examinations?

DIT is committed to ensuring that students with disabilities are in no way disadvantaged in examinations.  Specific examination and other assessment arrangements may be made for you if you have a temporary or permanent disability.

The specific arrangements are intended to enable you to perform to the best of your ability and are not intended to give you an unfair advantage. These arrangements are specified in accordance with DAWN (the National Disability Advisors Working Network) exam policy guidelines for third level institutions.

You have to register with the Disability Support Services, and provide appropriate supporting documentation, in order to be assessed for exam accommodations. All exam accommodations for DIT students are in strict accordance with the requirements of the DAWN and DIT examination policy.

If a disability does prevent you from taking an exam or assessment the way the rest of your class are required to, then it might be possible to make special arrangements for you.

Examination accommodations may include:

  • Extra Time
  • Flexibility with Assignments
  • Spelling, Grammar, Punctuation Waiver
  • Rest Periods
  • Use of a Reader/Scribe
  • Smaller Examination Centre
  • Physical Space
  • Accessible Toilets
  • Use of PC/Laptop or Assistive Technology

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Q. I have a Specific Learning Difficulty – What do I do?

There are a large number of students with specific learning difficulties (SpLD) studying in DIT programmes. The Disability Support Services (DSS) offer a range of supports to assist in meeting the needs of students with an SpLD. The DSS has four full time Learning Support Officers who are based across all the campuses. In order to get the support you need, you must register with the DSS as soon as you identify you need our support.

The overall aim of Learning Support is to equip students with strategies which suit their individual learning style and to assist them in becoming independent learners.  The Learnng Support Officers will do this by identifying students’ needs and developing their skills in active learning; time management; reading; note-taking; exam/study skills and task analysis.

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