Part-time Disabled Students' Allowances

Specialist Equipment Allowance

What is it?

This helps students get the equipment they need to fully benefit from their course. This will cover them for the whole course duration even if they transfer to another course.

What is the allowance for?

The Specialist Equipment Allowance can be used to buy and insure items that will help the student with their studies, such as:

  • computer hardware
  • disability-related software
  • computer or study furniture for home use
  • recording devices.

Any equipment bought with this allowance must have been included in the report from their Study Needs Assessment. If their Study Needs Assessment recommends that they need a computer or laptop, they’ll have to make a contribution of £200.

If they already own the recommended equipment

Any equipment they already have, whether purchased with DSAs or not, should continue to be used. The funding can be used to insure or extend the warranties of existing equipment.

Buying a laptop

They can use their own supplier when buying a laptop. If the cost of the laptop is more than the amount that has been agreed, they’ll have to cover any additional costs.

Upgrading equipment

They can upgrade equipment bought with their Specialist Equipment Allowance as long as:

  • the upgraded equipment meets the student’s needs as outlined in their Study Needs Assessment report
  • the student pays for the upgrade.

They can arrange the upgrade with their supplier.

Broken equipment

Insurance and warranty status

They should check the insurance and warranty for any broken equipment. If possible they should contact the warranty or insurance provider for repairs or replacements.

No insurance or warranty

They should speak to their needs assessor, who will be able to recommend if a replacement is required and let us know. We’ll send a letter to the student to let them know if we can pay for a replacement. They’ll have to give information about how the equipment became damaged or broken.