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Studying at UniSA - Blind or Vision Impaired

The University of South Australia (UniSA) has many successful students who are blind or vision impaired. For many students negotiating an Access Plan with Disability Services makes an important contribution to their success. Students are encouraged to contact a Disability Adviser at the Learning and Teaching Unit on their campus to discuss services and negotiate an Access Plan.

Disability Services

Disability services are provided by the Learning and Teaching Unit Disability Services.   The service has a Disability Adviser located on each metropolitan campus that can meet with you and discuss options to support your study.

Services Available

Some services that may support students who are blind or have a vision impairment are listed below. A full summary of services available for students with disabilities is available on the Services for Students web page.

Equipment

A range of equipment is available on campus or on a loan basis. You should discuss your equipment requirements with a Disability Adviser at the Learning and Teaching Unit on your campus. Equipment available at UniSA includes:

Access to print materials

The University aims to support access to all print materials required by students with print disabilities in their studies. Print materials which are produced by the University or provided by the University's library can be requested for loan in an alternative format. Other print material such as books and magazines students purchase to use in their study can also be requested in alternative format. Students will need to be able to provide the Learning and Teaching Unit Disability Service appropriate evidence regarding the nature of their print disability before materials can be reproduced. The University relies on an exemption in Copyright legislation to produce material in alternative format for students who have print disabilities. Once agreement for the provision of services is reached the service can arrange access to materials in the following formats where required either by sourcing existing copies in alternative format or arranging production of the material.

Requests for provision of material in alternative formats should be directed to the Disability Services Learning and Teaching Unit. It is important that students who require print materials in alternative format identify the print materials and the format they require at least three weeks before the commencement of the study period for which the materials are required. This is because it can take at least three weeks to source or produce the material in the appropriate format. Students who require their course materials in alternative format are expected to undertake additional planning prior to the commencement of their course of study so that the materials required can be identified in advance. This may require discussion with Course Coordinators before the study period commences to identify core and extended readings for the study period. The Learning and Teaching Unit Disability Services can assist students in determining their appropriate alternative format and equipment needs.

Students who have established agreement with the Learning and Teaching Unit Disability Services regarding the provision of print materials in alternative formats can make requests to the service for material using the alternative format print request form (Word 42KB - opens in new window). The service will process these requests as quickly as possible but it is important to note that requests made during the study period may not be completed within timelines that fit within course deadlines.

Web accessibility

The University aims at ensuring that its website is consistent with web accessibility guidelines. If you have difficulty accessing online materials contact disability@unisa.edu.au and provide the following information:

Mobility

It will be useful for you to orientate yourself to your campus, rooms and seating arrangements before your first study period begins. Campus maps can be downloaded from the web. You can make an appointment to see a Disability Adviser on your campus to discuss mobility issues.

Placements, field trips, and practical classes

Placements, field trips and practical classes need to be discussed with your Program Director prior to your studies. If you have applied for a Program which includes practical classes, placements or field trips (e.g. Teaching, Nursing, Social Work, Park Management) contact a Disability Adviser on your campus as soon as possible so that they can meet with you and your Program Director to work out useful processes.

Once you have enrolled

Examinations

The University can make alternative exam arrangements for students who are blind or have a vision impairment. You can contact a Disability Adviser at the beginning of your program so that processes can be put into place. Alternative exam arrangements may include:

Talking with academic staff

It is important to meet with your lecturers to discuss your individual needs. The To tell or not to tell website has information about whether, when and how to discuss your disability with staff. A Disability Adviser can develop an Access Plan for you, which will provide information to assist you with your discussion and negotiation with academic staff.

Plan your meeting with academic staff by:

Issues commonly discussed in a meeting with staff include:

Check out the Negotiating Extension web page for more tips on talking with academic staff about study adjustments.

Study Strategies

Working out strategies which work for you is an important part of being a successful student. Some useful study strategies include:

Useful Links

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