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The University of Southampton
Enabling ServicesPart of Student Services

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Enabling Services and what types of support are available?

Enabling Services offers various levels of support for students with disabilities, mental health difficulties and specific learning differences. We can offer support right from your arrival such as helping you to settle in, meeting our team, providing practical support and drop-in sessions. During your studies, we can provide ongoing specialist support that could include study skills workshops and tutorials, mentoring, learning support, wellbeing workshops, drop-in sessions and short-term counselling. Enabling Services is for all students who may encounter problems while at the University of Southampton. Please refer to our webpage for further information.

What is the First Support Team and what do they do?

 The First Support team can be contacted during office hours (8:00 – 18:00) to arrange support for students who may be facing difficulties in their life or dealing with a crisis; to contact the team call 023 8059 7488 or email 



I need immediate help/to speak with somebody urgently - what should I do?

If you need urgent support due to a wellbeing issue for yourself or a friend/fellow student please contact First Support by phone during office hours (8:00-18:00).  To contact First Support the number is 023 8059 7488 or you can click here for more information.  Out of office hours, contact the Student Life team by either visiting a University of Southampton Halls of Residence, calling 023 8059 8180 or emailing .  The Student Life team are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If emergency assistance is required then please call the emergency services on 999 on 111. 

How can I get help from Enabling Services?

Enabling Services offer daily drop in sessions as well as live chat during term-time with reduced availability outside of term time. You can also telephone Enabling Services 023 8059 7726 or contact us by email on Please visit our contact page here.

I have a long-term disability and might need extra support. How do I register with Enabling Services/What does registering with Enabling Services mean?

To register with Enabling Services we require evidence of your medical condition from a medical practitioner i.e. GP or consultant. Once we have received this we can arrange a registration appointment where ongoing support and funding can be discussed along with additional exam recommendations if necessary.

What should I do if I think I might have dyslexia?

Step One: if you think you may have a specific learning difficulty (SpLD) such as dyslexia, you can request an online, paper or in-person screening questionnaire from Enabling Services. Once you have completed the questionnaire it will be reviewed by a specialist practitioner who will advise if you show any signs of an SpLD and recommend if a post-16 full diagnostic assessment is appropriate. 

Step Two: if it is recommended that you take a post-16 diagnostic assessment you will be given information on how to find an assessor. Diagnostic assessments take around three hours and range between £400 and £600 in cost. Please note assessments must be carried out by a specialist teacher/assessor with a current Assessing Practising Certificate (APC) or psychologists registered with the Health and Care Professional Council (HCPC). Enabling Services can provide diagnostic assessments free of charge to current students with a household income below £30,000. Please contact Enabling Services for more information if you think you are eligible.

Step Three: send your post-16 diagnostic assessment report to to arrange a student support appointment and discuss your support recommendations. A post-16 diagnostic assessment report may give you access to Disabled Students Allowance and/or additional exam recommendations.  


What is the Disabled Students allowance and how do I apply?

Information on the Disabled Students' Allowances can be accessed here.

I’ve heard that I can be reimbursed £200 towards the cost of my computer following my Needs Assessment and the recommendation for additional computer software. How do I organise reimbursement?

Please refer to our webpages on Disabled Students Allowances here.

I am feeling low. What should I do?

Most people feel low from time to time and the student community is no different. You may like to come along to one of our drop in sessions, take a look at our online workshops or have a look at our self-help resources here. To access mental health support Enabling Services use an assessment questionnaire which is available by either calling us on 0238 597726 or emailing us at

I am concerned about my friend or another student– what should I do?

If you are concerned about a friend or student please have a look at this guide on the Student Minds website which has some helpful tips and advice. If you feel they are at risk to themselves or others please call or email or come along to one of our drop in sessions.

What are Mindful Fridays?

Mindful Fridays are chance for you to explore mindfulness meditation techniques to aide concentration, alleviate stress and promote wellbeing. These sessions provide the opportunity of a taster session for those interested in this therapeutic approach to wellbeing. Please visit the schedule here.

What Workshops do Enabling Services offer?

Enabling Services run a variety of online and in person workshops, designed to support students' wellbeing and studies. Our workshops are free to access/attend and can be booked via our events page or Libcal. Please visit our events page here for more information.

I’m having difficulties with a member of the academic staff what should I do?

Whilst Enabling Services are able to provide wellbeing support for students we are unable to give advice on issues relating to difficulties in relationships with academic staff. The Student Union provide academic help and support in this area. Please refer to their website for further information. If you find that these difficulties are having a negative impact on your studies or wellbeing please contact the First Support team or attend one of our Drop In sessions.

I need help with my coursework – where should I go?

Enabling Services run Study Skills Support in the AT Suite (Room 2047) in Hartley Library 14:00 - 16:00 Monday, Wednesday and Friday (term time) and Wednesday (vacation period). During Study Skills you can meet 1:1 with a practitioner (no appointment necessary) for practical study advice and support. Please note Study Skills runs on a first come first served basis. In addition to this we also run a series of study skills workshops that may help you. Please visit our Events Page for more information.
The Academic Skills Hub (SASH) also offer a daily drop in Hartley Library and have a range of study support and resources available on their website. Alternatively you may like to utilise the Study Skills Toolkit on Blackboard which cover a number of topics which you might find useful.
If you are registered with Enabling Services you may have access to the AT suite where you can find a range of assistive technology software such as mind mapping and text to speech available. Furthermore, if you have DSA in place you may be able to arrange a tutorial appointment with one of the team. Please contact Enabling Services on 023 8059 7726 for more information.
If the reason you need help is due to extenuating circumstances we’d suggest you consider applying for special considerations. Further information can be found here.

What support do you have at Winchester School of Arts (WSA)?

Enabling Services advisors attend WSA campus on a weekly basis for one-to-one appointments which are arranged through our main office at Highfield Campus. Please click here for contact details to arrange an appointment. The sessions are as follows:

Disability: Appointments are available for students with physical and long-term health conditions at WSA on Wednesdays (term time)
SpLD: SpLD appointments are available at WSA on Tuesdays (term time).
Study Skills Support: A Study Skills Support drop in is available on Tuesdays at WSA, 1:00pm - 2:00pm in Room A2025. Come along for quick practical study advice and support, no appointment necessary.
First Support: First Support provide support to students experiencing significant difficulties. To arrange an appointment at WSA call 023 8059 7488 or email
Counselling: Short term counselling is available at WSA by appointment on Fridays.

Take the shuttle bus to Highfield campus to access Enabling Services Drop-in, Mon - Fri (term time) and Mon, Weds and Fri (vacation period), 1:00pm - 3:00pm, Enabling Services, Building 37.

What are Special Considerations and how do I apply?

If you believe that either illness or other personal circumstances have badly affected your academic performance during the academic year or have prevented you from meeting deadlines, you may complete a Special Considerations form and submit this to your Student Office. Written documentary evidence must be provided to support the facts (for example a medical certificate or GP/consultant letter, or a statement from your Personal Academic Tutor). Enabling Services may be able to offer a supporting statement in some circumstances.

What are Additional Exam Recommendations (AERs) and how do I apply?

Students with a disability, mental health condition or specific learning difference, such as dyslexia or dyspraxia may be eligible to receive additional exam arrangements for exams and timed assessments. Arrangements are made according to individual need and can include extra time, use of a word processor, rest breaks and small exam rooms.
If you think this may apply to you, please send Enabling Services a copy of your medical evidence or post-16 full diagnostic assessment report and arrange a student support appointment. During your student support appointment you will meet with a specialist practitioner who will register you with Enabling Services and make appropriate recommendations to your Faculty based on your individual needs. If you have already registered with Enabling Services you do not need to do so again unless you are moving from undergraduate to postgraduate study. For more information on additional exam recommendations please click here.

What is mentoring and how do I access a mentor?

Mentor support may be available for students with Disabled Students' Allowance who have health problems, including mental health problems. The support that mentoring offers is tailored to suit a student’s individual needs and includes help with organisation, planning, and management of your study time. For more information please contact Enabling Services.

What is the Study Support Room (Assistive Technology Service)?

The Study Support Rooms (ATS) are quiet study space for Enabling Service users. Study spaces in these areas are equipped with computers with assistive software, scanners, printers and other assistive aids. Study Support Rooms (ATS) can be found locations can be found by clicking here.
A Specific Learning Differences Practitioner is available in the Study Support Room at the Highfield Campus Monday, Wednesday and Friday between 14:00-16:00 (Wednesdays only outside of term time) for practical study advice. No appointment is needed.

Where can I find some more information about Transition Days?

Transition Days are for students who are starting at the University of Southampton in the forthcoming academic year who have a disability, long-term health condition, mental health issue or specific learning difference. Students are welcome to bring their family, friends or carers with them to the day. More information can be found here.



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