Language used in a university setting may be different to what you are used to.

"Disclosing" means sharing information. 

At school the terminology for long term health conditions or educational needs is often "Special Needs" or "Learning Support" - but you may find that the word "disability" is used more frequently in Higher Education. 

This is because of the legislation which protects people with long term health conditions (Equality Act 2010). Even if you do not think of yourself as "disabled" you may well meet the criteria necessary to receive crucial support. If you formally disclose information about your long term health condition to your university, this triggers certain legal obligations for the university to support you, and not discriminate against you, providing certain conditions are met. 

You can also share information about your health condition or mental health condition directly with UCAS, when you apply, which will then be passed on to your chosen uni. You can also disclose directly with your funding body when you apply for student finance. This will help start the process to apply for Disabled Students' Allowances.

It was game-changing for me when I disclosed my illness to the uni – the first step to being able to thrive in education
These meetings were a safe space for me to feel supported, seen and understood when no one else seemed to. It felt like breathing a sigh of relief. 

We recently asked UMHAN members about the most effective types of support they provide to students with mental health conditions. Here is what some of our members had to say: 

I know that students find that it is their relationship with their adviser i.e. someone they can meet with, who will listen and support them in thinking through options, strategies etc. is really significant and effective

Building trust - I offer person centred, non judgemental support
Time management and organisation strategies
Overall relationship building can be one of the most effective techniques as support built on trust can be very effective
Giving the student a voice whereby they feel at ease to discuss in detail how their week went, along with any challenges faced
It's probably providing support with their academic progress, in the context of their individual mental health and neurological needs
Ongoing support with planning, motivation, stress reduction; alongside referrals to numerous specialised services/secondary care, and liaison/advocacy with the academic schools.
University Mental Health Advisers Network (UMHAN). c/o The Moseley Exchange, 149-153 Alcester Road, Moseley, Birmingham B13 8JP Tel: 07510 734544 Registered charity number: 1155038. We use cookies to improve your experience using this website.
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