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Accessibility

Accessibility

If you have a disability, illness, medical or mental health condition and would like support or assistance to complete your TAFE or University studies at CQUniversity, the Inclusion and Accessibility service can assist you. The Inclusion and Accessibility service aims to minimise barriers and encourage participation in education and training by all students. Reasonable adjustments including exam accommodations and provision of learning materials in alternative formats can be implemented to assist students who have registered with the Inclusion and Accessibility service.

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HOW WE CAN SUPPORT YOU

Disability Advisers provide confidential assistance and support to prospective and current CQUniversity students.

In TAFE, Disability Advisers:

  • can assist with course selection, enrolment procedures and general information  
  • communicate on a student’s behalf with CQUniversity teaching staff to ensure a mutual understanding of individual needs  
  • co-ordinate programs specifically for students with a disability  

In Higher Education, Disability Advisers:

  • can discuss inherent requirements and implementation of reasonable adjustments  
  • liaise with other teams within the University for exam accommodations, referrals and support  

Disability Advisers can arrange provision of learning resources, adaptive equipment, technology/software supports and will coordinate support staff to assist registered students who require additional help with their learning.

Disability Advisers will liaise with relevant external agencies and organisations to assist and support students. This will be agreed on an individual basis.

There is a registration process to follow - see the registering for the first time section on this webpage. During your first appointment with a Disability Adviser you will discuss the nature of your condition, the likely impact on your studies and your rights and responsibilities while registered with  the Inclusion and Accessibility service. Based on all information provided as part of the registration process, an Accessibility Plan will be developed to confirm the support arrangements.

Each student is different, so the support required will vary depending on your needs and the requirements of your course. If you wish, parents and carers may attend your appointment with you.

ACCESSIBILITY PLAN

The reasonable adjustments tailored to your circumstances are documented in an Accessibility Plan (AP) based on consultations and documentation provided as part of the registration process. Once finalised, you will be sent a copy of your Accessibility Plan for confirmation. You should submit a copy  of your AP to each lecturer or discuss how the AP will be distributed to relevant teaching staff with your Disability Adviser. Accessibility Plans are reviewed annually, but can be updated throughout the year as required. If at any time you have questions about your Accessibility Plan and/or the support  you are receiving, please contact the Inclusion and Accessibility service.

REASONABLE ADJUSTMENTS

The Inclusion and Accessibility service is able to offer a range of reasonable adjustments to students living with disability. Some examples include (but are not limited to):

  • adaptive/ assistive equipment, such as page overlays, lumbar support chairs, voice recorders etc.  
  • adaptive/assistive technology and software such as, screen readers, voice to text software  
  • learning materials provided in alternative formats  
  • exam accommodations which may include additional time, a scribe or reader  
  • consultation with teaching and academic staff regarding coursework (if required)  
  • support staff to assist with organisation and planning, notetaking or reading assistance  

Please note that appropriate reasonable adjustments are determined on an individual basis. Students registering with the Inclusion and Accessibility services will work with a Disability Adviser to determine which reasonable adjustments will best support them throughout their course of study.

REGISTERING FOR THE FIRST TIME

To ensure that you receive all relevant assistance available, it is important that you register with the Inclusion and Accessibility service as early as possible. This will allow sufficient time to organise your support requirements, as some assistive services can take up to several weeks to organise.

How to Register

  1. Download the Student Registration form and complete the disclosure section.
  2. Consult the CQUni Handbook to be familiar with your course structure and unit profiles. Check if there are residential schools, field work/clinical placements and/or work experience involved in your course. Make sure you have read the course inherent requirements, online learning components of your units, learning assessments, and learning outcomes for each unit.

    Talk to your treating health professional, who must complete the Treating Health Professionals section of the Student Registration form. Your treating health professional needs to know about the different components  of your course to advise  how your disability, illness, injury or medical condition may impact on your studies and make recommendations for reasonable adjustments that will meet your specific needs.

  3. The Treating Health Professional should identify:
    • your disability, illness, injury or medical condition
    • explain how your disability, illness, injury or medical condition may impact on your studies
    • recommend specific adjustments to assist you in completing all aspects of your coursework

    If you want to discuss the Treating Health Professional Report further, please contact the Inclusion and Accessibility service on (07) 4930 9456.

  4. Once the Student Registration form is completed please submit it to accessibility@cqu.edu.au along with accompanying documentation (if applicable). You will then be contacted to make an appointment to speak to a Disability Adviser. The Disability Adviser will review the documents and consult with you to identify services and educational adjustments that the University can offer to reduce the impact of your disability, illness, injury or medical/mental health condition on study. Consultation with relevant academic staff may be required to identify appropriate options and ensure accommodations can be applied consistently throughout the year.

Should I register?

Only doing one unit? Studying by distance or not located near a campus? Living with a fluctuating condition? Studying cross-institutionally? If you are unsure whether you should register with the Inclusion and Accessibility service, please contact the Inclusion and Accessibility Officer to discuss your options at accessibility@cqu.edu.au or via phone (07) 4930 9456.

CONTINUING YOUR REGISTRATION

REGISTRATION REMAINS CURRENT DURING STUDY

Once you have registered with the Inclusion and Accessibility service and have an Accessibility Plan in place, all reasonable adjustments noted on the plan will remain current throughout your enrolment.

RENEWAL OF YOUR ACCESSIBILITY PLAN

If you have an Accessibility Plan, you will be contacted annually to check if any changes are required. You will be sent an updated Accessibility Plan each year.

CHANGES TO YOUR CONDITION

You are encouraged to make contact with the service at any time during your study to discuss changes to your condition which may impact on your studies and require additional reasonable adjustments.

RETURNING TO STUDY AFTER A LEAVE OF ABSENCE

It is important to renew your registration with the Inclusion and Accessibility service. Please contact us as early as possible so a new Accessibility Plan can be developed to meet your needs. Your Disability Adviser will let you know if additional documentation is required.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Will my lecturer/unit coordinator know I am registered with the Inclusion and Accessibility service?
A Disability Adviser will discuss options for sharing your Accessibility Plan during your registration appointment. All medical information supplied to the Accessibility will remain confidential.

I am not sure if I will be able to complete all aspects of my course, such as attending residential schools or work placements, can I negotiate alternative arrangements/assessments?
It is important to understand all course requirements including residential schools and compulsory professional placements as soon as possible, preferably prior to enrolment. Decisions about alternative arrangements/assessments can only be made by the relevant academic staff. However a Disability Adviser may advocate on your behalf if required. Many courses have Inherent Requirement documents to guide students in making decisions about their suitability for different courses.  

Can I ask someone else who knows me to talk about my needs?
If you would like to arrange for a support person (parent, partner, friend, support worker or treating health professional) to speak on your behalf or make enquiries about the support you are receiving from the Inclusion and Accessibility service, you will need to sign a permission form to confirm your agreement.

I am pregnant/a nursing mother and have concerns about how I will get through an exam without a break. Can you help?
Yes. The Inclusion and Accessibility service supports students who may require temporary educational adjustments, including students who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Can the Inclusion and Accessibility service organise assignment extensions or deferred exams on my behalf?
Students are responsible for requesting assignment extensions and deferred exams following the procedures outlined in [link to policy] Assessment Policy and Procedure.

How can I get some help when it’s hard for me to speak on the phone?
Communication with a Disability Adviser can be in person, by phone, email, Skype or videoconference. Staff can arrange for interpreters to be available if required. You are welcome to ask for a support person to be present to help you answer questions at all times.

I don’t think I have been treated fairly by my lecturer. What can I do?
It is important to understand your options by talking to the Student Advocacy Officer which is a free and confidential service available to all students.  The Inclusion and Accessibility service will assist as required to resolve the matter. To contact the Student Advocacy Officer directly, email student-advocacy@cqu.edu.au or phone 07 4930 6880.

Resources

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITY

The Inclusion and Accessibility service provides financial assistance in the form of scholarships and interest-free loans to eligible students experiencing financial disadvantage.

There are many types of financial assistance available to eligible students including:

  • Equity Scholarships and Grants
  • Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarships
  • Community & Industry Scholarships
  • Interest free student loans
  • Financial resources and budgeting tools

Please visit our scholarships website for further information.

Non-CQUniversity scholarships for students with disability

CQUniversity policies and procedures

Key legislation

Other useful resources

Contact Us

Contact the Inclusion and Accessibility service:

Email: accessibility@cqu.edu.au

Phone: +61 7 4930 9456