Academic Manual


Guidance: Which process should I use?

Published for 2023-24

 The following guidance aims to help you understand the different types of support available to you. 
 This list is not definitive - there may be times when you are eligible for another type of support that is not listed here, or you might be struggling with something which doesn’t quite fit into a category, or you may need help with more than one thing.
 If you want to talk to someone about which process to use, please refer to our Help and Advice pages.

What do you need help with? 

Which process to use 

A shorter-term physical condition 

  • Temporary medical conditions 
  • Accidents and injuries 

A longer-term physical condition 

  • Mobility differences, such as wheelchair users or individuals with musculoskeletal conditions 
  • Sensory differences, such as individuals certified as blind or partially sighted and those who are D/deaf 
  • Long-term medical conditions, such as diabetes, arthritis, cancer, HIV or autoimmune conditions 
  • Progressive physical conditions, such as motor neurone disease or muscular dystrophy 
  • Fluctuating or recurring physical conditions, such as epilepsy, rheumatoid arthritis, myalgic encephalitis (ME), or chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) 

A shorter-term mental health difficulty 

  • Shorter-term mental health conditions, such as mild anxiety 

A longer-term mental health condition 

  • Longer-term mental health conditions, such as depressive disorders, generalised anxiety disorder, eating disorders 
  • Progressive mental health conditions such as forms of dementia 
  • Fluctuating or recurring mental health conditions such as bipolar disorder, psychotic episodes or seasonal affective disorder 

A learning, social or communication difference  

  • Specific learning differences (SpLD) such as dyslexia or dyspraxia 
  • Social and communication differences such as an Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC) 

Pregnancy and adoption 

  • Pregnant students and their partners 
  • Maternity, paternity, parental and adoption leave  
  • Feeding a young baby 

Parenting and Caring 

  • Parenting 
  • Childcare 
  • Caring for a vulnerable adult 

Religion and belief 

  • Observing holy days and festivals such the Sabbath, Ramadan or Eid 
  • Daily religious or cultural practices including prayer, fasting, diet and dress 


  • Bereavement 
  • If you are affected by physical or sexual assault 
  • If you are affected by traumatic world events such as war, natural disasters or terrorist incidents 
  • If you are affected by any form of harassment or discrimination  

A personal difficulty 

  • Family difficulties such as family break up or divorce 
  • Financial difficulties such as problems with tuition fees or rent 
  • Housing difficulties such as homelessness or problems with your landlord 
  • Work and other commitments, such as professional emergencies