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Reasonable Adjustments: Specific Learning Disability (SpLD)

Reasonable adjustments are an important strategy to support students with disability while studying or training. Adjustments are negotiated to meet the needs of the individual student; this is predominantly done through a Disability Practitioner within the institution the student attends. They can include a wide range of adjustments outlined below. 

Students who have specific learning disabilities that impact upon their ability to study may benefit from a range of inclusive teaching and assessment strategies.  Some adjustments that are frequently used for students who have specific learning disabilities include:

  • provision of reading lists in advance of the course so that reading can begin early
  • provision of summaries of key texts and concepts in lectures
  • provision of written, step-by-step instructions for assignments and practical tasks
  • provision of assistive technology such as speech recognition and text-to-speech software and smartpens for use in class, for assignments and in exams as appropriate
  • additional tutor time to explain topics, tasks and any material presented on boards or PowerPoints and to explain processes and sequences in processes required by the course
  • provision of learner materials in preferred formats, including size of text, spacing and printing on coloured paper
  • provision of a glossary of technical terms and professional jargon with a plain English explanation at the beginning of the course
  • recorded lectures
  • support with time management
  • peer mentoring or additional learner support time to aid in organisation and time management and to provide additional orientation to equipment if required by the course
  • provision of oral feedback in addition to, or instead of, written feedback
  • extensions to deadlines where extensive reading and/or research has been required
  • submission of outlines and drafts of assignments to allow feedback
  • provision of additional time for reading and analysing questions and planning answers
  • provision of a distraction-free environment where assistive technology can be used for exams
  • oral instead of written answers in assignments and other assessment tasks where possible
  • use of word processing software in exams to improve spelling