Disability support services
If you have a disability or condition which impacts your study or participation in student life, you may be eligible for support.
View available support
The DRC can help you to communicate your needs to lecturers and other academic staff.
Often the best way to do this is to create an access plan. An access plan is a study support plan prepared to minimise the educational disadvantage you may experience resulting from a disability or condition. Your plan is created with assistance from your disability liaison officer, and is forwarded to your unit chairs.
You are encouraged to use your access plan to discuss your needs with unit chairs at the start of each trimester. Your access plan could include practical information to assist your lecturers to meet your needs, recommendations for inclusive practices, and study adjustments and services recommended for you.
If you have a vision impairment, deafness, a learning disability, or if you physically have difficulty holding a book, you may need access to study materials in formats other than print.
Most of Deakin’s course materials are available in electronic and online formats, but if you require materials in another format, the DRC can:
- assist you to identify a suitable format
- arrange for the Print Disability Service to produce your unit materials in that format and send them to you.
Remember to contact the Disability Resource Centre about your needs as early as possible and to tell us about any changes to your enrolment as soon they happen so you can get the right unit materials.
The DRC can assist you in negotiating with academic staff for adjustments to class-based assessment tasks such as assignments, group work, oral presentations, in-class or online tests. These adjustments can be identified for you in an access plan, and can include:
- extensions for assignments
- additional time to complete lab tasks or practical assessments
- consideration of an alternative form of assessment (e.g. written work instead of class presentation, oral presentation instead of written).
End of unit assessments and exams
Information about end of unit assessments and exams can be found at End-of-unit assessments and examinations.
Alternative arrangements can also be made for your end of unit assessments and exams. The DRC can arrange adjustments which may include:
- additional writing time
- rest breaks
- use of a computer
- use of a scribe
- individual venue.
Don't forget to plan ahead as alternative assessment arrangements can take up to 10 working days to organise.
Where adjustments cannot be implemented, you may be eligible for special consideration. Special consideration is different to alternative assessment arrangements. It is the responsibility of all students to be informed about the eligibility for and application process for special consideration.
The DRC employs a range of support workers who provide services such as note-takers, AUSLAN interpreting and laboratory assistance for students who require additional support in unit activities (classes or seminars).
Deakin Library offers specialised services to students with a disability, including a longer loan period and access to specialised equipment (such as adjustable wheelchair accessible study tables and catalogue terminals on low tables). Libraries at each campus have a specific room equipped with assistive technology.
Deakin has a range of computer hardware and software for students with specific needs.
- text to speech
- screen magnification and visual enhancement
- viewing or converting graphics
- on-screen keyboards
- assisting with calculation.
You may need to learn basic skills in the use of assistive technology and our DRC staff can help you with information, advice on training needs and refer you to suppliers and providers.
Your course may require you to participate in off-campus activities such as field trips or practicums. If you feel you may need support to attend or identify a possible alternative to your field trip please contact a Disability Liaison Officer as early as possible.
If you are undertaking a practicum or placement we recommend you begin planning early in the trimester to ensure you are aware of the expectations of placement/practicums and to consider how you might meet these expectations. Where support or adjustments are required, you should begin discussions with the faculty early as some adjustments can take considerable time to plan. The DRC is able to support you with these discussions if required.