Service Principles - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Service Principles

USC's AccessAbility Services is guided by principles of equity, inclusion and access, and supports the fundamental right of students with a disability to participate in all aspects of university life on the same basis as their peers. AccessAbility Services advocates for universal design in curriculum and delivery, and for learning and teaching materials to be accessible to and useable by students of all abilities and backgrounds.  

Our key functions include: 

  1. provision of recommendations of reasonable academic adjustments for all aspects of study (including on campus, technology enabled learning and work integrated learning)  
  2. capability building for USC staff regarding equity and inclusion, disability education, training and awareness 
  3. specialist advice regarding disclosure, Inherent Academic Requirements, campus access, removing barriers to engagement and universal design 

All services provided by AccessAbility Services are in accordance with the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, Disability Standards for Education 2005, and the Carer Recognition Act 2010. The Disability Discrimination Act 1992 defines the term “disability” as:

  • "total or partial loss of the person's bodily or mental functions; or
  • total or partial loss of a part of the body; or
  • the presence in the body of organisms causing disease or illness; or
  • the presence in the body of organisms capable of causing disease or illness; or
  • the malfunction, malformation or disfigurement of a part of the person's body; or
  • a disorder or malfunction that results in the person learning differently from a person without the disorder or malfunction; or
  • a disorder, illness or disease that affects a person's thought processes, perception of reality, emotions or judgment or that results in disturbed behaviour;

and includes a disability that:

  • presently exists; or
  • previously existed but no longer exists; or
  • may exist in the future (including because of a genetic predisposition to that disability); or
  • is imputed to a person.

To avoid doubt, a disability that is otherwise covered by this definition includes behaviour that is a symptom or manifestation of the disability.”

Service delivery occurs following a triage of need and is offered in a flexible mode to suit the student. Proactive servicing, including to prospective students, ensures a comprehensive approach to inclusive student success and meeting relevant legislative requirements. 

Principles that guide provided services

The following principles guide the range of services provided by AccessAbility Services:

  • equity, inclusion and accessibility
  • self-determination and enabling independence
  • universal design
  • service user participation and consultation
  • evidence based practice
  • improving educational access, participation and success
Student responsibilities

USC students must be aware of and follow Student Expectations and Responsibilities. In addition, students registered with AccessAbility Services are encouraged to play an active role in managing their needs and organising support for their studies. They are also responsible for:

  • reading and understanding their Learning Access Plan
  • sending their Learning Access Plan to their course coordinators and tutors as soon as it has been developed
  • communicating their academic adjustments to their course coordinators and tutors, if applicable
  • checking their student email account regularly
  • replying to any emails sent by AccessAbility Services regarding their Learning Access Plan
  • if provided with support services, complying with Conditions of Use as outlined on the Services Agreement
AccessAbility Services responsibilities

AccessAbility Services is responsible for:

  • committing to continuously improving our performance through review and feedback
  • treating students with dignity and respect
  • giving timely responses to queries
  • communicating students’ exam adjustments to Examinations for their end of semester exams
  • referring students to other support services if needed
  • acknowledging and respecting the privacy and diversity of students
  • storing documentation in a secure location