Your rights

You have the right to:

  • be treated in a fair and respectful manner, free from all forms of harassment and discrimination
  • confidentiality of information and sharing of information on a need-to-know basis with informed consent
  • negotiate appropriate reasonable adjustments to enable participation in education, to the same standard as any other student, provided those adjustments do not compromise the academic requirements or learning outcomes of the unit or course, or are considered unreasonable by the university. Reasonable adjustments will be documented in an Education Access Plan (EAP).

Your responsibilities

Those that receive AccessAbility support must agree to the following guidelines.

Swinburne student charter expectations:

  • treat other students and staff with honesty, respect and courtesy in a safe manner, free from all forms of harassment and discrimination.
  • be accountable for your learning.

View the Swinburne student charter.

AccessAbility support services

  • Contact AccessAbility Services as early as possible after enrolment so that arrangements can be made to have your support in place.
  • Supply a complete copy of your timetable as soon as it is available to you. This includes units (name and code), times, locations and term dates.
  • Provide current documentation from a relevant treating health professional to access reasonable adjustments via AccessAbility Services.
  • Approve your plan with written consent in your appointment or via email. This is required for AccessAbility to act on your behalf.
  • Provide your Education Access Plan (EAP) to conveners/lecturers/tutors to support your reasonable adjustments.
  • Late changes in timetable or subject choice may result in reduced or delayed services being available to you.
  • Initiate and maintain contact with AccessAbility Services regarding any change in your condition or required reasonable adjustments in a timely manner.
  • Apply for Equitable Assessment Arrangements (EAA) at least six weeks before the first exam. 
  • Ensure your Swinburne student email account remains able to receive incoming mail and check it regularly so that you can promptly respond to any requests for action or information.

Assistive technology can include software, digital recorders, tablets, echo smart pens and laptops. We encourage you to trial assistive technology and equipment to determine what may be of greatest assistance to you. The library’s borrowing policies and guidelines will apply, however extended loans can be authorised by an AccessAbility adviser.

Education Access Workers are provided where it is the most appropriate means to assist a student to effectively access education. This type of support is negotiated on an individual case basis. Your AccessAbility Adviser will go through the responsibilities attached with having an Education Access Worker assist you with your studies.

Call the AccessAbility Adviser to discuss your needs, at least six weeks before exam dates in Higher Education, at least one week before test dates in Pathways and Vocational Education. AccessAbility Services needs time to make the necessary arrangements with the exams team, department and support staff.

Note: Requests for alternative assessments may require written documentation/certificate from a doctor or relevant professional.

Prescribed course learning materials will be provided in alternative format where possible. This process can take up to three months.

A maximum of three textbooks per enrolled unit of study will be provided, including up to two prescribed textbooks and one recommended textbook only. Contact your School or Faculty as early as possible so that they can provide you with information about the learning resources you require.

AccessAbility Services requires at least three months’ notice from you about your alternative formatting requirements. If AccessAbility Services does not have this information early, you may run the risk of not having the material back in time. 

Postgraduate students will need to negotiate with the AccessAbility Adviser for the provision of alternatively formatted materials.

Students with disabilities may require reasonable adjustments to teaching and learning practices so that it is possible for them to participate in a unit. A possible adjustment might include being given permission to make audio recordings of classes.

Where students make audio recordings, they:

  • agree to use the recording solely for the personal purpose of studying or revising the material for the unit 
  • agree not to record private conversations or personal and sensitive information about individuals 
  • must not provide the recorded material (or transcripts of the material) to any other persons, unless they have the prior consent of the lecturer 
  • agree not to publish recordings.

There may be circumstances where it is inappropriate to record teaching content (for example, where copyrighted material is used or there is a discussion where private information about individuals may be drawn out). Lecturers or tutors will ask students to stop or pause recording at these times.

It is important to give feedback to the Education Access Worker and the AccessAbility Adviser, as this allows AccessAbility Services to monitor the support service and ensures that appropriate changes are made to improve the quality of support.

Please direct feedback to

If any problems or conflict occur between you and the Education Access Worker you should first talk with the Education Access Worker about it. If this is not possible, or problems continue, please contact the AccessAbility Adviser for a confidential discussion or complete a Complaint Form.

The AccessAbility Adviser will assist in trying to resolve the problems or will refer the matter on to the appropriate Swinburne authority (if necessary).

If you have any concerns or questions about these guidelines, it is important to discuss this with an AccessAbility adviser. You can contact an AccessAbility adviser by emailing

If you’re eligible to access services from AccessAbility, you will then need to sign the service guidelines and agreement document.

Require further assistance?

Want more information about our AccessAbility Services or have a question regarding your rights and responsibilities? Contact our friendly and knowledgeable team.

Contact us