Further and higher education

Teenage male student in a classroom turning to face the camera

Young people with special educational needs or disabilities can study a variety of courses depending on their ability, interests and career plans. If you are aged 16 - 25, on a course at school or college and feel that you need extra help, you can request an education, health and care needs assessment. 

Courses and study programmes

A wide range of courses or study programmes are available; these are offered in a range of subjects and at different levels. Details on courses, entry requirements and how to apply can be found on individual school and college websites or on UCAS Progress website. 

Supported learning

Further education colleges and special schools offer courses designed specifically for young people with special educational needs or disabilities; these may be called supported learning or education. 

You can find details of courses and how students with additional needs are supported on individual school and college websites.  

Individual support packages (Individual Curriculum Solutions)

For young people with complex and multiple needs and only when advertised courses are unable to meet a young person support needs, an individual package of learning and support may be appropriate. This will be discussed with your Additional Needs Pathway Adviser and agreed as part of the planning for transition. The Local Authority County Resourcing Panel agrees funding for individual packages.

Independent specialist colleges

Some young people with more complex educational needs may attend an Independent Specialist College, only if local colleges are unable to meet needs through existing courses or individual support packages. This can be discussed with your Additional Needs Pathway Adviser and SEN Casework Officer as part of the transition planning and review of the Statement of Special Educational Needs / Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan.  Details of specialist residential colleges are available from the Association of National Specialist Colleges website and on GOV UK.

Post 18 support and opportunities

We have produced an 18-25 booklet designed to supprot students with preparing for adulthood opportunites. 

Transport for post-16 students

Information on transport for all post-16 students, including those with special educational needs and disabilities can be found on our post-16 school transport page. 

Funding for schools and colleges

Post-16 providers have funding from the local authority to support learners with special educational needs and disabilities. Information on funding can be found on our School and College Funding pages.

Higher education

For information on higher education courses, advice on choosing and apply for higher education and support for students with additional needs and disabilities, visit the UCAS website. 

Our 14-25 Additional Needs Team have produced the Moving On: Routes into Further Education and Higher Education that contains lots of information for parents and carers of young people that are preparing to take the next steps in education. 

View information including how and when to make applications for student finance and Disabled Students' Allowances.

Related Pages

  1. Employment
  2. Education, Health and Care Plans
  3. Post-16 transport to school or setting
  4. Expectations of colleges and post 16 provision


  1. Routes into F.E and H.E - accessible version
  2. RNIB Moving On Guide: Preparing young people with vision impairment for post-16 transitions
  3. Moving On: Information for School Leavers with Additional Needs in Cambridgeshire

External Links

  1. Natspec - specialist further education
  2. Cambridgeshire Skills - adult learning
  3. GOV.UK - Disabled student allowance
  4. Education and Training Jargon Buster
  5. Ambitious about Autism: Further education and training


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