Advice and Support
Funding for an SpLD assessment
Can a student be referred for a Specific Learning Differences (SpLD) support with a Specialist teacher through the University?
If there are indicators that a student has a SpLD, they are offered a formal assessment with an educational psychologist or specialist teacher. The assessment will be funded by SOAS from the Access to Learning fund.
Disability Adviser available
Are there specialist staff available to talk to within the service? Is there a disability officer or a disability adviser for students to talk to?
Students can access support from Disability and Neurodiversity advisors and learning advisors by contacting the department at email@example.com
Support from academic staff
Is advice and support available from academic staff within the faculties of the University? How do students access this advice and support?
All students with a disability can have a study inclusion plan drawn up which describes any adjustments that need to be made or support they may need to access the course. It includes advice to lecturers / tutors and other relevant SOAS staff on: physical access; access to the curriculum; exams; other forms of assessment; study skills support; mentoring; library; IT; and health and safety.
Staff continuity and understanding individual needs
Are the specialist disability staff in the team able to offer a personalised, bespoke response to a student’s needs? Where possible, is continuity provided for the student in meeting the same Disability Adviser and/or mentor so the student can get to know them over time?
As well Disability Advisors we also have a Disability Case worker who is able to offer follow up one to one support meetings to students who may have more complex needs.
One to one mentoring support
Are there any additional services available such as mentoring, counselling services or a buddy scheme to help a new student to settle in if needed?
Confidential counselling service delivered by professional counsellors and advisors. Professional mentoring with qualified mental health practitioners.
Online self-help through Silvercloud, providing Cognitive Behavioural Therapy on a range of topics, with the option of guidance from a counsellor (available to all students, click the link to sign up using a SOAS email address).
One to one / group study skills
Does the institution provide support with arranging One to one/Group study skills sessions?
1:1 specialist study support with a specialist tutor, which focuses on specific SpLD needs of the student. Students with DSA will be funded for this; those without funding can access some 1:1 support through the learning advisor.
The Disability and Neurodiversity Team runs workshops to support students' learning. The key areas are similar to the general workshops run by the Centre for Innovation in Learning & Teaching (CILT) but the approach is based on some of the specific strengths and needs of students with SpLDs.
Social and Peer Support
Adapted accommodation in halls
Is adapted accommodation and specialist equipment available in halls of residence?
Most halls of residence are wheelchair accessible and there are adapted rooms in the two SOAS halls of residence as well as the Intercollegiate Halls owned by the University of London. Disabled students are given priority for a space in the University Halls. Advisors can help to arrange visits and to provide information about the adaptations in the halls of residence via the SOAS accommodation officer.
Does the institution offer a standard level of assistive technology to disabled students?
All computers have Claroread and Mind Manager. Some bookable rooms have additional software and large text display machines for students with a visual impairment. Training on how to use the assistive technology is also available.
There are induction loop systems in some lecture halls, and portable loop systems at other reception points across the university.
There is a small stock of laptops with assistive software and other equipment available for loan to students not eligible for DSA.
How has your Disability Support offer changed in light of the Coronavirus pandemic? Are in person appointments currently suspended? If prospective applicants would like to register with the Disability Service, how do they go about doing this currently?
For the academic year 2020/21, due to the online delivery of teaching in Term 1, some of the adjustments noted in students’ study inclusion plans will be on hold until the campus is fully opened to students and staff. This includes access to quiet study rooms via the Library, the medical room, Personal Evacuation Emergency Plans (PEEPs), and accessible lockers. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any queries.