Disability Liaison Officers (DLOs) and Student Support Officers (SSOs) are staff responsible for assisting students with disabilities studying at university or TAFE. Disability staff at Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) have a range of titles and configurations of support for students with disabilities. The role of Disability Liaison Officers and Student Support Officers is to provide:
- a free confidential service for enrolled students with a disability and/or ongoing medical condition
- the coordination of specific services such as study supports/accommodations
- support to students in the admission/selection process and during enrolment
- advocacy on behalf of individual students on disability issues that affect a number of students
Prior to applying for your course it is recommended that you contact these officers to find out more about the services and supports/accommodations available to students with disabilities and/or medical conditions. Early contact is important as there is short time frame between applying for a course, enrolling and beginning classes.
The contact details for disability staff can be found on the website of each tertiary provider or listed in the tertiary admission guides produced by the tertiary admission body/centre in your State and Territory. Contact details are also listed in the individual course handbooks produced by the education provider. Look under the heading ' student services' for further details. You can also nominate on your enrolment form that you would like to be contacted by a disability officer regarding services for students with disabilities. To access the services provided by disability you must be an enrolled student.
Contact details for University Disability Advisers and TAFE Disability Services
Examples of the questions that you can ask disability staff include:
- what documentation is required for alternative assessments including exam provisions?
- which buildings on campus have accessible facilities?
- are there scholarships for students with disabilities?
- which staff should I introduce myself?
- can I talk to other students with a similar disability?
- what help can I get with exams and assessments?
- what orientation programs are available?
- what assistance can I receive during orientation?
- how do I get access to a disability parking permit on campus?
- what computer facilities are available for example reading machines, image enlargers, JAWS?
Refer to the worksheets below to assist you identify how your disability may impact upon your course of study and any supports you may need: