Disability services - Section contents
If you're a student with disability, you may be eligible for ongoing support with your studies.
Who is eligible?
The University of Melbourne recognises disability in accordance with the Disability Discrimination Act 1992.
Under this Act, disability is defined as a physical, mental or medical condition or circumstance that requires ongoing support or study adjustments. This includes conditions that currently exist, previously existed or may exist in the future.
Disability, in relation to a person, can mean:
- Total or partial loss of the person's bodily or mental functions
- Total or partial loss of a part of the body
- The presence in the body of organisms causing disease or illness
- The presence in the body of organisms capable of causing disease or illness
- The malfunction, malformation or disfigurement of a part of the person’s body
- A disorder or malfunction that results in the person learning differently from a person without the disorder or malfunction
- A disorder, illness or disease that affects a person’s thought processes, perception of reality, emotions or judgement or that results in disturbed behaviour.
Because every situation is unique, eligibility for ongoing support is determined on a case-by-case basis.
Types of support available
The University can make adjustments to your studies to help offset any disadvantage you might face without them.
Study adjustments (sometimes referred to as reasonable or equitable adjustments) are changes to how subjects are taught and assessed.
Adjustments are made on a case-by-case basis, and may include:
- Alternative exam arrangements
- Assistance from an academic support worker
- Equipment loans
- Assistive technology
- Accessible formatting of course reading materials
- Extensions to assignments
- Flexibility in attendance requirements
- Accessible teaching spaces and ergonomic furniture.
Once you have registered for support, one of our Student Equity and Disability advisers will work with you to create an adjustment plan which suits your needs.
How to register
You can register by applying for special consideration for ongoing support.
Registration is completely voluntary. You can register at any time during your studies, but we recommend doing so when you're enrolling in your course.
- A Health Professional Report form (PDF 402.9 KB) is our preferred document for applications made on medical or psychological grounds. It can be completed by a range of healthcare and allied professionals (such as medical doctors and psychologists).
- A medical certificate or supporting letter on official letterhead from a treating health practitioner is also acceptable.
If your supporting documentation is provided by an overseas practitioner and not available in English, you'll need to provide a NAATI-accredited translated copy.
The following forms of documentation will not be accepted:
- Medical test results
- Photos of your medication or injury
- Letters of reference or support from University or College staff (other than Health Service or Counselling and Psychological Services staff).
These University services may also be helpful to students with disability.
- Web accessibility guides
Accessibility guides for University systems, including the student portal, LMS and email.
- Library services
Assistance accessing library resources such as books and journals.
- University of Melbourne Student Union (UMSU) Disabilities Department
The UMSU Disabilities Department organise events each semester aimed at fostering a sense of community for students with disabilities, and educating the broader public about disability and mental health.
- Financial aid
Financial aid opportunities available to students with disability.
- Melbourne Law School Student Equity and Disability Support
Melbourne Law School provides specialist Equal Opportunity Liaison Officers for students with disability.
- University of Melbourne Disability Action Plan 2014-2018 (PDF 99.5 KB)
The University of Melbourne's Disability Action Plan continues our proud history of supporting students experiencing disability to participate equitably in the academic and co-curricular environment.
If you still have questions relating to disability services or ongoing support, please contact Stop 1.