Studying with a visual disability
Having a visual disability can impact your learning at Leiden University.
Both partial sight and blindness affect a student's interaction with their environment, thus how they experience and learn from it. This means that studying with a visual disability may require additional time and effort. Still, many students study successfully and accomplish many things despite their diagnosis. Leiden University has a range of study adjustments available to support you throughout your studies.
Adaptations can be made to the ways in which you follow classes and take exams. Special arrangements and facilities offered by Leiden University for students with a visual disability are for example:
- Additional time for exams
- Examination papers in a larger format
- Use of laptop for examinations
- Taking examinations in a separate room with fewer students (when possible)
- Extensions to assignment deadlines
- Alternative study plan with a reduced workload
- Text-to-speech software, that reads your study materials aloud whilst highlighting the text.
- Taking personal circumstances into consideration for your BSA (Binding Study Advice)
The adaptations available to you depend on your specific situation. You can discuss this with Fenestra staff.
Make an appointment
To arrange special adaptations for your studies, please make an appointment with Fenestra Disability Centre, Leiden University’s information centre for students with a disability.
Exception: additional time for exams
If you only require additional exam time and have an official diagnosis, you can submit a request as follows:
- Make a digital copy of your diagnosis, i.e. a letter issued by a doctor or clinic. This can be either in Dutch or English. If you need to have your diagnosis translated from a different language, mention this when completing the contact form – see next step.
- Complete and submit the contact form (select ‘Additional time for exams’)
After submitting your request
- Within two weeks, one of our staff members will be in touch with you.
- Fenestra will notify your faculty of the requested adaptation. Your faculty will then arrange your additional exam time. If you have questions about this, you can contact your study adviser.
- For most faculties, these adjustments will automatically continue for all your exams. However, at some faculties you must arrange additional time for each exam individually. Not sure how it works at your faculty? Talk to your study adviser.
Inform your study adviser
Make sure to let your study adviser know that you have requested advice from Fenestra.
Guidance & advisors
Fenestra Disability Centre provides advice on all disability-related matters. If you need support in other areas, there are other advisers available.
See all advisers and guidance services
Students with a disability can incur additional expenses both during their studies and in daily life. There are a number of regulations, funds and special allowances in place that can help to ease the financial burden.
Read more about financial support
Workshops & courses
Leiden University organises workshops and courses that can help you to improve your study skills.
Take a look at the workshops and courses
Leiden University offers study tips that can help you to study more efficiently despite any obstacles brought about by your disability.
Take a look at the study tips
Healthcare and home care
In some circumstances you might need additional healthcare or home care facilities or support.
Read more about healthcare and home care
Additional facilities in the home might be both needed and welcome if you have a disability.
Read more about housing
According to the Act on the Equal Treatment of the Disabled and Chronically Ill, it is strictly forbidden to discriminate on the grounds of disability and chronic illness when providing employment, accommodation, goods and services.
Read more about legal protection
Staying in contact with other students might not always be easy but it is very important. Find out about the different ways in which you can meet other students.