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University - disclose Asd?

(13 Posts)
Scottishdancer Thu 19-Feb-15 19:53:19

Ds has decided he is now ready to go to university. He is 25. When we went to the open day the learning support team told him not to put on the application form that he has Aspergers but to mention it at the interview. So we didn't put it on the form. He has now been offered an unconditional place - no interview.Dont know what to do know. Hewil need student support at some point.if we tell them now will they withdraw the place as information on application was wrong?

bigbluebus Thu 19-Feb-15 22:15:35

Not sure why the Learning Support team told him not to put it on. We spoke to LS at one open day and they definitely told DS to declare it - in fact they said many of his potential lecturers were on the spectrum (sort of course that attracts geeky types) DS declared his on his UCAS application form - he got offers from all 5 of his choices. He was actually told by his mentor at college to put it on the form as he may be more likely to get an offer! DS wasn't called for interview for any of his course choices.

Contact the Uni and explain. I doubt they can withdraw the place as that would be disability discrimination. It is your DSs diagnosis to share as he wishes - it is not compulsory to declare it, so they can't hold it against him.

Scottishdancer Fri 20-Feb-15 10:14:16

Thank you

troutsprout Fri 20-Feb-15 20:52:59

Yes , I don't understand why they would tell him not to do it either. Ds put it on his application and talked about it in his personal statement. He has 5 offers.. No interviews. Also, some of them have already put support into place on taster days when he has gone for a session.

I don't know about changing it tbh... I would definitely investigate further incase it does make a difference to his application at this stage.

pinkoddballs Mon 23-Feb-15 22:41:19

I agree contact the University. My son has Aspergers and put it on his UCAS form. There's extra help from student support through the disability team.

Chiconbelge Fri 27-Feb-15 07:45:04

How great that he has decided to go and that he feels ready. I agree with the suggestion you contact them now and I don't think it will cause problems not least because as has already been said that would be discrimination. The beginning of the year is crucial and as you have already seen the learning support people may not be super efficient. You want him to get the right accommodation and have support in place from day one so you need them to have this info. Congratulations to you and him!

mumeeee Fri 06-Mar-15 10:24:38

I"m another one who doesn't understand why he was told not to put it on the form. He can disabled student allowance which will help him get the support he needs. DD3 is 23 and in her second year at uni. She has Dyspraxia plus some other learning difficulties including some autistic traits. Anyway she was advised and encouraged right from the beginning of the application process to declare any disabilities ot special needs she had. She also applied for DSA and after an assessment she was given q laptop and on the laptop for proofreading, Dicter phone for recording lectures,A support worker once a week to help hee organise her work plus use of a computer and extra time in exams. She also talked to the university disability team who made sure all her tutors were aware of her needs ane proviided access to a human proof reader ( DD3's words).
So yes do get him to contact the university and explain, They won't withdraw the offer. DD3 had 3 offers.

LarrytheCucumber Sat 28-Mar-15 13:45:41

I don't understand why they would tell him not to put it either.
DD is a mentor to students with disabilities and he would probably qualify. Her students do not have to tell her what their diagnosis is (although most do) and she gives them help with organising workload and prioritising assignments etc.
The students do have to have an assessment performed by the University, but that is to identify areas where help is needed.
DD also acts as a note taker sometimes, because some students need help with this.
From what DD says there is a lot of help available and DS should make use of it. One of DD's students is in his 40s by the way.

lastlines Sun 05-Apr-15 07:39:32

This is a really helpful thread. I'd never heard of DSA, and especially didn't know the support was there in the form of someone to help ASD students organise their work. This is exactly what DS2 will need, and knowing it exists is so reassuring.

thecurlyhairproject Wed 22-Apr-15 11:27:12

Easy answer - make sure you let the university know. I wish I'd been diagnosed whilst still at university, it would have made things a lot easier for me (even if they were not able to accommodate my needs, it'd be an authentic explanation to other students and the lecturers why certain things were difficult for me).

BaconAndAvocado Tue 28-Jul-15 21:55:43

Please could someone tell me what DSA is?

DS1 with AS wants to go to University so it's very encouraging to hear that disclosing his AS might actually help him!

SansaUndercover Thu 30-Jul-15 00:13:07 should help explain DSA.

The idea of DSA is to cover costs that a student without disabilities wouldn't incur- For example, it might pay for a note taker for a student who struggles to take notes in lectures, or cover the cost of software that is especially useful for your condition. Things have changed recently, so it's now expected that students have to make some contributions towards equipment (for example paying the first £200 towards any laptop). However, it's definitely worth getting a DSA needs assessment done, as the assessors will have a lot more experience about what can help (and what can be provided) than you will.

For ASD/Aspergers specifically, it might pay for a mentor who could help with things like time management, and just talking through things they are finding difficult, or a dictaphone, if they might find concentrating in lectures difficult. However, needs assessments are based on the individual, rather than the diagnosis.

It does concern me in the OP's post that you were given initial poor advice by the learning support team. IMO, it's always best to declare a disability on the UCAS form. Unis won't discriminate, but they can take the diagnosis into account when looking at the application- and it can be confusing if a disability is mentioned in the reference which isn't declared elsewhere on the form. Do you think the learning support team seemed good otherwise? For some students, the quality of support at the uni can make or break their experience.

Offers definitely can't be withdrawn because you let the uni know about a disability. It's not like declaring grades, where not declaring a grade is considered fraudulent. The sooner you let the uni know about a disability/SEN/health condition, the sooner they can offer help and support to a prospective/new student.

In my experience, the absolute worst thing a student can do is not let anyone know about their disability until they are facing problems. There is a lot of support available at most unis for students with additional needs, but students do need to be proactive in seeking it out. Some students unfortunately leave it until it's too late and their problems have become very complex before they seek help.

It might be worth encouraging your children to post on the student room, and find out about the experiences of others with disabilities at uni (parents are welcome to post too).

It's worth bearing in mind that unis often won't discuss your adult children with you- they may have to do all/most of the communication with the unis themselves. If this could be especially difficult for them, it's a good idea to bring this up with the uni as soon as possible and see what they will accommodate. Again, if this is likely to be an issue, bring it up before a crisis occurs.

TheTigerIsOut Fri 30-Oct-15 07:53:43

I know this is an old thread, but just in case someone comes back here with the same question, I would say that if the learning support team tells you not to disclose it, is because they may be aware of implicit discrimination practices happening in the University. In such case, I would be keen to say that your best option may be to look at other universities.

I have worked for several universities and although most were absolutely great in supporting students with additional needs, I have sadly dealt with a couple of departments with an appaling attitude when it comes to understand not only the disability, but even what discrimination on the basis of disability is.

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