Disability & Wellbeing Service Guidelines for working with a reader

What is a Reader?

A Reader is a practical helper who responds to instructions to read out text for a student. This could be academic text for an assignment. Or assessment material/written responses in a test or an exam.

The Reader

The Reader will have no personal interest in the success of the candidate. They will be someone who is able to read accurately, intelligibly, and at a reasonable rate. They will have sufficient knowledge of your subject to be able to read technical terms and describe diagrams effectively. They will be someone identified by the Disability & Wellbeing Service or by your department.

Before the exam

Things to consider when working with a Reader in an exam:

  • it's useful to meet up for a practice run or discussion before an exam so you can think about the following:
    • the speed of reading that is most effective
    • interruptions: how will you interrupt the Reader if you do not understand something?
    • how will the Reader effectively explain a diagram so that it's meaningful to you?
  • you must not chat with the Reader, unless this relates to the reading out of the text
  • the Reader should only speak when spoken to, leaving you in charge of asking to have the text read back, or to have the exam questions read out again
  • you must adhere to the set time restrictions

If using a Reader for an exam, self-study, or assignment purposes, they'll not be able to give you any factual help or tell you what you should be reading.

Any problems?

Disability Advisers are available for either you or your Scribe to discuss any issues arising from the work. 

It is important that the Reader effectively reads the material you need for study. If you identify anything getting in the way of that aim, discuss this with an Adviser.

Your helper cannot be paid for work additional to what has been agreed with the Disability Service. Or work for which funding has not been approved.