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Disability Support

Disability Support

UCD Students with a disability or significant ongoing illness have the opportunity to receive relevant reasonable accommodations or supports. Documentation confirming the disability or significant ongoing illness is required in order to receive supports. These supports are related to the student's needs and may include academic supports such as awareness supports for your lecturers and/or exam supports such as extra time for exams (10 minutes per hour). Supports are available in any UCD course including; undergraduate degrees, postgraduate degrees, Open Learning and University Access. To receive these supports students must provide documentation and attend a short meeting called Needs Assessment with UCD Access & Lifelong Learning.

For the academic year 2023/2024, Needs Assessments must be requested by Friday, 12th April for supports required for the Spring Exam Period.

Each year you are registered as a UCD Student your disability supports will roll over, there is no need to have another Needs Assessment meeting each year. However, if you are returning from a Leave of Absence or a break in your studies between degrees, please contact our team on (opens in a new window)disability@ucd.ie to check your supports have rolled over to the new academic year.

If you have had a Needs Assessment and wish to review your supports, you can do so at any time by meeting with a member of the team.

To make an appointment for a Needs Assessment, to roll over supports or to review supports please email your team on disability@ucd.ie. 

Our team monitors this email Monday-Friday, 9am- 4pm.

You can arrange supports throughout the academic year and it is best to contact the disability team as early as possible so that any supports you require can be put in place without delay. If exam supports are required, please contact us before Week 6 of the trimester to guarantee supports being in place for end of trimester exams.

Follow these three steps to arrange supports:

  1. Ensure you have the correct supporting documentation which confirms your disability or diagnosis. Required documents are listed on our UCD Evidence of Disability Form 2023. If you have multiple disabilities, please gather appropriate documentation for each disability.
  2. Make an appointment by emailing disability@ucd.ie. You will then be asked to complete a short form on SISWeb and securely  upload your documents there. 
  3. Attend your Needs Assessment appointment to discuss and confirm your supports.

Some Needs Assessments will take place by Zoom video call. If you would like more information on how to use Zoom, please see ourGuide to Zoom Needs Assessments

All students who wish to register with UCD Access & Lifelong Learning for disability support will need to agree to both the Consent to Release Information Form 2023 and Disability support privacy statement 2023.

International students should note that the supports available through your home institutions may be different from those available in UCD. It is important to note that the extra time available to students with disabilities in timed exams in UCD is 10 minutes per hour.

At your Needs Assessment you will agree on a plan for your exam accommodations, if relevant. These accommodations might include extra time (set at 10 minutes extra per hour, as per the national standard), use of the alternative exam location on campus, use of a reader etc. 

Students who require exam accommodations are advised to book a Needs Assessment appointment by week 6 of the current trimester. Students who contact us after this date cannot be guaranteed their exam accommodations in the end-of-trimester exams.

Please check your UCD Connect email regularly for updates in regard to exam accommodations. For locally arranged exams (class tests, online exams and midterms) you must contact your module coordinator to request supports, providing your Certificate of Disability Support, as soon as possible to allow time for arrangements to be made. Please follow directions from your module coordinators in regard to examination supports, and contact your module coordinator with any questions.

Please note that not all examinations are for a specific module, e.g. the Stage Transfer Assessment (STA) required for doctoral (research) students. Please contact (opens in a new window)disability@ucd.ie or your supervisor if you require advice about a particular examination format. 

How to check what supports have been confirmed:

If you wish to check what supports you have confirmed with the disability team, please log on to SISWeb, go to the Registration, Fees & Assessment tab and click on 'My Exam Supports'. If no supports are listed please email disability@ucd.ie immediately. If you have been on a Leave of Absence or have changed course your supports may not have updated this year. 

If you have availed of temporary exam supports these will be removed in the weeks following your exams - you will need to contact us to request a Needs Assessment appointment to avail of ongoing disability supports, including exam supports.

At your Needs Assessment you will agree on a plan for your classroom accommodations. We understand that not all programmes are primarily classroom based e.g graduate research students, this section also includes supports that may be helpful while learning in these programmes.  Examples of classroom accommodations used by students in UCD are:

  • Use of Assistive Technology such as a recording device in lectures, if eligible.
  • Provision of an Irish Sign Language (ISL) Interpreter and/or Note Taker for Deaf students, if eligible.
  • Provision of required reading in an alternative format for Blind or visually impaired students, if eligible.
  • The student’s lecturer is made aware of their disability, if desired.
  • Assistive Technology to assist with completing assignments, reports or theses. 

Please contact (opens in a new window)disability@ucd.ie if you require further information on possible accommodations for your programme.

Assistive Technology (AT) is a range of tools that make learning more accessible. This includes, for example, software that helps with spelling and grammar, digital pens or software for recording lectures, adapted tools for those with visual or hearing impairments, and alternative inputs for students with mobility issues.

UCD Access & Lifelong Learning has an Assistive Technology Specialist who can provide technology and training to students who avail of disability support. Usually, recommendations will be made for AT when you attend your Needs Assessment. If you are avail of Disability Support and would like to look at AT options, please email us to make an appointment with the AT Specialist: disability@ucd.ie

All international students have the opportunity to receive supports. To avail of supports, international students are also required to follow the general guidelines on arranging disability supports, as outlined in the sections above. Please note that the evidence of disability must be provided in English, and if not originally in English must be translated by a professional translator.

It is important to note that as a student in UCD you will be able to avail of the same supports as other students with disabilities in Ireland, following national legislation and best practice. Supports in Ireland can differ to those available in other countries. For example, extra time in exams is set nationally in Ireland at 10 minutes extra per hour. 

If you're a UCD student with disability support going on Erasmus or to Study Abroad and wish to seek advice on managing your disability while away please come to see us during our drop-in hour or email disability@ucd.ie to set up an appointment. 

For tips and guidance on studying abroad for students with a disability, (opens in a new window)please see the Studee website.

For information on what supports may be available to you in the University in which you will be studying, please contact the disability services of that institution. UCD Global will also be able to advise you on who to contact or you may also wish to check the details of the disability team and disability supports available in your host institution on the (opens in a new window)Inclusive (opens in a new window)Mobility Website.

UCD Global can also advise on any health insurance queries you may have. If you are traveling to Ireland and have any queries relating to your prescription please see the UCD Health Centre’s website and contact the UCD Health Service, if required.