Special consideration for ongoing support

If your studies are affected by ongoing circumstances such as a disability, mental health condition or commitment, you may be eligible for support.

Assistance from the University is available when an ongoing circumstance or an official commitment affects your ability to perform your academic duties and the expected duration is longer than six weeks.

If your circumstances are expected to impact your studies for less than six weeks, you must apply for special consideration due to unexpected circumstances.

Advice for students affected by COVID-19

If you are awaiting a COVID-19 test result, or have tested positive, you will be considered for special consideration on receipt of valid supporting documentation.

Receipt of valid supporting documentation will allow us to determine if your circumstances mean you are eligible for Special Consideration and how this may allow for reasonable adjustments to assessment tasks based on your circumstances and the impact and disruption experienced. Any outcome adjustment provided will take into consideration your personal circumstances and the intended learning outcomes of the subject and assessment task.

  • Required documentation for COVID-19 related applications

    Students in Australia

    Health Professional Report form (PDF 223.0 KB) is our preferred document for applications made on medical or psychological grounds. Please note that if you are in Australia, you cannot submit the student declaration outlined below. You can obtain the above documentation either at the time of undertaking a COVID-19 test, or from your health professional, even if in digital format through a telehealth appointment. The student declaration is only for students outside Australia who are unable to obtain the above outlined documentation.

    Students outside Australia

    We are aware that it may not be possible for students to procure documentation as each country may differ in the way this information is communicated. Given these circumstances, you must submit a special consideration student declaration (PDF 85.3 KB) with your application verifying your circumstances, the impact on your ability to prepare for, undertake or complete assessment tasks and provide a reason why testing documentation may not be available.

    The use of a student declaration without COVID-19 test results will only be accepted where the circumstances in the student’s home country does not allow students to access medical services without personal risk.

  • On campus activities

    Do not come to campus if you are waiting for a COVID-19 test result and self-isolating or have tested positive as you will be considered for Special Consideration on receipt of supporting documentation.

  • Online studies

    If you are waiting for a COVID-19 test result or have tested positive for COVID-19 and you are not well enough to continue classes for a period, you will be considered for Special Consideration on receipt of supporting documentation.


Eligible circumstances Eligibility criteria Required supporting documentation More information
Disability Students with disability, as defined in the Disability Discrimination Act 1992. Health Professional Report form (PDF 402.9 KB), medical certificate or supporting letter on official letterhead from a treating health practitioner. Disability services
Chronic medical or mental health condition Students with an ongoing medical or mental health condition which will impact their studies for six weeks or more. Health Professional Report form (PDF 402.9 KB), medical certificate or supporting letter on official letterhead from a treating health practitioner. Medical and mental health support
Carers Students who have ongoing carer responsibilities, as defined in the Carers Recognition Act 2012 (Vic). Documentation to verify that you have significant carer responsibilities, such as an official Centrelink document or a letter from a GP. Support for carers
Elite athletes or performers Elite athletes or performers associated with approved organisations.
  • A completed Elite Athlete Recognition form
  • A signed letter from your performance organisation outlining your professional obligations as an elite performer.
Support for elite athletes or performers
Defence reservists or emergency volunteers
  • Members of the Australian Defence Reserve Service
  • Volunteers for the Victorian State Emergency Service, the Country Fire Authority or similar.
A signed letter on official letterhead of your organisation outlining your duties and obligations. Support for defence reservists or emergency volunteers
Cultural or religious observance Students who participate in ongoing religious or cultural observance whose participation may impact their studies. A signed letter on the official letterhead of your religious congregation or cultural authority outlining the nature of your observances and impact on your studies. Support for religious or cultural observance

How to register

  • Step 1: Understand eligibility and documentation requirements

    Review the eligibility and documentation information above. Please note that because every situation is unique, eligibility for ongoing support is determined on a case-by-case basis.

  • Step 2: Know the deadlines

    We encourage you to lodge an online registration application at the start of your course, or as soon as your circumstances become known, to ensure you receive support as soon as possible.

    While you are welcome to register at any time during your studies, there are deadlines for when you need to submit alternative exam arrangements (AEA) requests for each exam period.

    Exam period
    (For dates, see exam dates and timetable)
    Deadline to submit AEA requests
    Semester 1 exams Monday 19 April 2021
    Semester 1 supplementary examsFriday 2 July 2021
    Semester 2 examsFriday 10 September 2021
    Semester 2 supplementary examsFriday 26 November 2021
  • Step 3: Register online

    Fill out the online registration form and submit your application with supporting documentation. To ensure your registration is processed smoothly, please include as much information as possible.

    Register now


The University of Melbourne respects the privacy of your personal information. Information you provide as part of a special consideration application is strictly confidential and subject to the protections of relevant privacy laws.

Any person who contacts the University can expect that their personal or health information will be treated in accordance with the University of Melbourne’s Privacy Policy (MPF1104). You can access your personal information, subject to any relevant laws, by contacting us.


Once you have submitted your application to register, you’ll receive a submission acknowledgement email to let you know your registration is in progress. You will later be advised by email of the outcome of your registration.

Possible outcomes include:

  • Registration approved by the faculty
  • Registration to be negotiated with the faculty
  • Registration not approved by the faculty
  • Referrals to student services which can support your needs.

If your registration is approved, you will receive an email with a link to book an appointment with a Student Equity and Disability adviser to create your academic adjustment plan. Appointments can be by phone, in-person or virtual. Your registration will only be finalised after your appointment has been completed.

If your registration is not approved, you will receive an email with details about the outcome.

Your academic adjustment plan (AAP)

Your academic adjustment plan is an official document that:

  • Details the impact of your circumstances
  • Outlines reasonable study adjustments to assist with your studies
  • Supports you when negotiating your study adjustments with academic staff.

Appropriate adjustments for your study and assessments will be determined during your appointment with a Student Equity and Disability adviser. These adjustments will then be documented in your final academic adjustment plan.

Your academic adjustment plan is a confidential document. Academic staff can view a list identifying students who have an academic adjustment plan, but they cannot view the content of your plan unless you show it to them.

Requesting a specific study adjustment

Study adjustments are not automatic or granted to you on request. All adjustments must be discussed with and approved by a Student Equity and Disability adviser and the relevant faculty.

In assessing whether an adjustment is reasonable, the University considers:

  • Your circumstances
  • The benefit of the adjustment on your ability to achieve learning outcomes and participate in your course or program
  • The impact of the adjustment on the University, including staff and other students.

Retrospective adjustments

Your academic adjustment plan cannot be retrospectively applied to previous assessment tasks or attendance requirements.

If any previous tasks have been affected by your circumstances, or may be impacted upon prior to your appointment with a Student Equity and Disability adviser, you will need to apply for special consideration due to unexpected circumstances.

Re-registering for support

The length of time that you are eligible for an adjustment will depend on your circumstances, and you may need to re-register for support as required.

For example, if you are a performer with commitments that are short-term or sporadic, your registration will last for the relevant period only. However, for example if you are a person with a vision impairment, your registration will be sustained throughout your studies.

You may also need to apply for short-term support through special consideration due to unexpected circumstances in situations where your academic adjustment plan does not already provide support. For example, if your plan only allows you to use assistive technology, but you fall ill and miss an exam, you would need to apply for special consideration due to unexpected circumstances within four working days of the exam date.