Evidence of a disability
You must provide us with evidence of your disability so that we can make recommendations for your support.
- Evidence should indicate that your disability/condition is ongoing. Specifically, that it has lasted (or is predicted to last or may well last) 12 months or more.
- It is helpful if your evidence indicates how your disability/condition may affect your studies.
- If you are asking your doctor/consultant for evidence, show them our Guidance for GPs providing medical evidence (Office document, 43kB) so that the evidence you get will be useful.
- Prescriptions are not acceptable as evidence.
Evidence for each disability
Select each drop-down to see what medical evidence we can accept for different disabilities.
A Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs) needs assessment report.
If you have already applied for Disabled Students' Allowances and attended your DSAs needs assessment meeting, you will have received (or will soon receive) your DSAs needs assessment report.
We can also accept a DSAs needs assessment report from a previous course (at this or another university) as evidence.
A diagnostic report from an ADHD specialist or a doctor/consultant letter.
This must indicate that an attention deficit condition has been identified.
A diagnostic report from an autism specialist or a doctor/consultant letter.
This report must state that a medical professional considers you to be on the autism spectrum.
Dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia or dysgraphia
Dyscalculia relates to maths specific weakness.
Dysgraphia relates to writing difficulty, such as slow writing or writing that is difficult to read.
A post-16 diagnostic assessment
This should be done by a chartered or educational psychologist or specialist teacher. It should indicate that a specific learning difficulty such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia or dysgraphia has been identified.
Diagnostic assessment from before you were 16
We might be able to use an earlier assessment but it will depend on how it was done and what it says. Send it to us so we can advise you further.
JCQ (school) records
If you have Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) records, send them to us with your other evidence. JCQ records may not be enough for reasonable adjustments on their own but if they are all you have, please send them so we can advise you.
Dyspraxia: alternative evidence
Instead of a report from a chartered or educational psychologist, we can also accept an occupational therapist’s report or a doctor/consultant letter identifying dyspraxia.
Dysgraphia: alternative evidence
Instead of a report from a chartered or educational psychologist, we can also accept a doctor/consultant letter identifying a physiological reason (such as Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) or the ongoing effects of a hand injury) why you may not be able to write quickly or legibly.
Hearing impairment or visual impairment
- Doctor/consultant letter
- audiologist letter* (hearing impairment)
*For a hearing impairment, an audiogram is not sufficient without a letter from a doctor/consultant or audiologist to explain the audiogram.
Mental health difficulties
This includes depression, anxiety, eating disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), bipolar affective disorder, personality disorders, or psychosis.
Doctor/consultant or psychiatrist letter.
Other health conditions and mobility difficulties
This includes arthritis, epilepsy, diabetes, cystic fibrosis (CF), narcolepsy, repetitive strain injury (RSI), cancer, HIV, hepatitis, multiple sclerosis (MS), Crohn’s disease, lupus, or CFS/ME.
This includes paralysis, back problems, scoliosis, chronic pain, or using a wheelchair.
If your disability is not listed
If you have or suspect you have a disability that is not listed above, contact the Disability team to find out what supporting evidence you can submit.
If you do not have acceptable evidence
If you have evidence which is different from the documents listed, submit what you have. We can tell you the next steps, including how to get new evidence if necessary.
If you believe you have ADHD or autism and do not have a diagnostic report, contact the Students' Health Service or your own doctor to find out if there is a diagnosis on your record and to discuss options.
How to send us your evidence
Include your full family name and date of birth.
- Upload evidence when you request a study support plan. Or you can add evidence at any time by using the 'upload evidence' option;
- Scan and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org;
- Post to Disability Services, University of Bristol, Lower Ground Floor, Hampton House, Bristol BS6 6JS.
Evidence to apply for DSAs
If you are applying for Disabled Students' Allowances (DSAs), your funder (such as Student Finance England) will also need evidence to decide if you are eligible for funding. The evidence your funder needs may be different to what the University needs to make recommendations for reasonable adjustments.