Disability Resource Centre
The Disability Resource Centre (DRC) offers guidance, information and support, and is an essential contact for disabled applicants and/or applicants with a Specific Learning Difficulty or long-term health condition. The DRC supports individuals with any impairment/disability, medical condition or injury, including those with:
- Specific Learning Difficulties (including dyslexia and dyspraxia)
- physical/mobility impairments and injuries (including wheelchair users and upper limb disorder/RSI)
- sensory impairments (eg hearing, visual)
- mental health difficulties (eg depression, anxiety disorder)
- long-term illnesses/health conditions (eg cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, HIV, diabetes, epilepsy)
- Asperger syndrome and autism
If you’re considering Cambridge, you’re advised to get in touch with the DRC and a College admissions office as early as possible to discuss your application and specific requirements.
We strongly recommend that you indicate your disability/disabilities and provide any relevant information in your UCAS application. Such disclosures are look at separately from academic assessment and allow us, for example, to make appropriate adjustments to the interview process, if needed.
If a particular College meets your specific requirements we recommend that you apply to that College rather than make an open application.
Location and accessibility
Students are based in Colleges for day-to-day living and go to a faculty/department for lectures, practical work etc. Therefore, we encourage you to visit before applying to assess the suitability of your intended College and department, including their locations relative to each other.
The DRC’s online Disability Access Guide is a useful starting point for information regarding facilities and accessibility.
Study and academic support
With your agreement, the DRC liaises with relevant University staff before you start your course to ensure that appropriate support requirements are established.
If you require support workers such as note-takers, specialist one-to-one study skills tutors or interpreters, the DRC's Non-Medical Help (NMA) Scheme may be able to help.
The DRC holds a range of specialist equipment that students with a disability can borrow to support their learning. Please contact the DRC to discuss your requirements and if there may be anything available to you through the loan pool.
Examination access arrangements
If you require specific arrangements for examinations (such as additional time, someone to write on your behalf and/or use of a computer), the DRC Team can advise how to organise such arrangements via your College Tutorial Office.
Exam access arrangements are based on medical evidence, or on a full diagnostic report written by an Educational Psychologist or Specialist Teacher. Please contact the DRC for advice about what evidence is required.
Support for students with Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLDs) including dyslexia and dyspraxia
If you have a SpLD you must have a current diagnostic assessment report as evidence for obtaining appropriate adjustments for your course of study.
Information and advice about diagnostic assessments is available from the DRC’s SpLD Team and on the DRC website.
Currently, UK students can apply for Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs). However, the application process can be complicated and time-consuming so it's important that you begin the application process for DSAs as soon as possible to ensure your funding is in place for the start of term. If you have any queries, the DRC can offer advice and guidance on the application process for DSAs and other financial support.
In addition, once at Cambridge, there are specific grants that disabled students from the UK, EU and overseas may apply for.
Further information on financial support for disabled students is available on the DRC website.
If you would like some of the information from any of our publications in an alternative format (eg large print), please contact the Cambridge Admissions Office to discuss your requirements.