Students with a disability
The Disability Resource Centre (DRC) offers guidance, information and support, and is an essential first contact for applicants with disabilities (including those with a Specific Learning Difficulty) and/or those with a chronic medical condition.
If you're considering Cambridge, you're advised to get in touch with the DRC and a College admissions office as early as possible to discuss your application and specific requirements.
If you decide to apply to Cambridge, we strongly recommend that you indicate your disability in your UCAS application. This allows us, for example, to make appropriate adjustments if required, such as scheduling interviews in accessible rooms.
- Applying to Cambridge
- Location and accessibility
- Study and academic support
- Examination access arrangements
- Support with Specific Learning Difficulties (including dyslexia and dyspraxia)
- Financial support
- Further information
If you would like information from any of our publications in an alternative format (eg large print), please contact the Cambridge Admissions Office to discuss your requirements.
Cambridge Admissions Office (CAO)
Telephone: 01223 333308
For those considering Cambridge, arrangements can be made for informal visits to Colleges and/or departments within the University and we can also put you in touch with other students who have disabilities and are studying here.
For advice about your application and to discuss your specific requirements you should contact the admissions office at one of the undergraduate Colleges as soon as possible. Prospective students with severe mobility and/or sensory impairments are encouraged to visit Cambridge to assess the suitability of their intended College and department before making their application.
If you decide to apply to Cambridge we strongly recommend that you indicate your disability in your UCAS application. This is so we can contact you to discuss your specific needs and ensure appropriate adjustments are in place such as scheduling interviews in accessible rooms. Please do not worry that your application will be disadvantaged by doing so.
In addition, applicants with a disability are advised to apply to a specific College having sought their advice about your circumstances at an early stage, rather than make an open application.
Cambridge is a collegiate university, so students are based in Colleges for day-to-day living and go to a faculty or department for lectures, practical work etc.
Cambridge itself is an historic city with some narrow and cobbled streets. Therefore, we encourage you to visit before applying and consider the facilities and suitability of your intended College and faculty/department, including their locations relative to each other. Arrangements can be made for informal visits to Colleges and/or departments within the University. If you wish to do so, contact the DRC or one of the College admissions offices.
- Maps are available showing access facilities for disabled visitors to the New Museums, Downing, and Sidgwick sites. See www.cam.ac.uk/disability/guide/maps/.
Accommodation is provided by each College. If you have a disability, you’re advised to apply to a specific College having sought their advice about your circumstances at an early stage, rather than make an open application.
You should discuss your specific requirements with the College to which you are intending to apply. Applicants with mobility impairments are encouraged to visit Cambridge prior to making an application. As well as access within the College itself, the distance from the department should also be considered.
With your agreement, the DRC will liaise with relevant University staff before you start your course to ensure that appropriate support requirements are established.
If you require support workers such as note-takers or interpreters, the DRC's Non-Medical Assistance Scheme may be able to help.
If you'll require specific arrangements for examinations (such as additional time, someone to write on your behalf and/or use of a computer), the DRC team can advise on or organise such arrangements via your College tutorial office.
If you have an SpLD you must have a current diagnostic assessment report as evidence for obtaining appropriate adjustments for your course of study.
Information and advice about assessments is available from the DRC’s SpLD Adviser and on the DRC website.
UK students are currently eligible to apply for Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs). It is important that you begin the application process for DSAs as soon as possible to ensure your funding is in place for the start of term.
In addition, once at Cambridge, there are specific grants that disabled students from the UK, EU and overseas may apply for.
Further information on financial support is available on the DRC website.
- Read the DRC’s Access Guide
- Listen to a podcast about applying to the University as a disabled applicant..
- Download the leaflet: What if I have a disability?
- See the National Bureau for Students with Disabilities website for general information and advice on finance and applying to university