Specifications in relation to the reasonable adjustment of general qualifications

Rules for how you can adapt qualifications for students with disabilities.

Applies to England


Specifications in relation to the reasonable adjustment of general qualifications

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This document sets out rules on the changes you can and can’t make to certain qualifications to cater for students with disabilities. It currently applies to:

  • GCSEs and entry-level certificates in GCSE subjects
  • A levels, AS qualifications, advanced extension awards (AEA), Cambridge IGCSE, Cambridge Pre-U qualifications and International IGCSEs (level 1/2 certificates)
  • English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) qualifications
  • functional skills and free standing mathematics qualifications
  • principal learning and project qualifications
  • Cambridge international certificates and international baccalaureate diplomas

We set these rules using our powers under section 96 of the Equality Act 2010.

September 2017 update

The Department for Education (DfE) has amended the list of qualifications these specifications apply to. We have updated the appendix to this document to include the revised list.

Published 15 December 2011
Last updated 19 September 2017 + show all updates
  1. Updated list of qualifications to reflect changes made by DfE. Removed: certificates in adult literacy and numeracy, general national vocational qualifications (GNVQ), key skills and Welsh Baccalaureate Qualification Core Certificate. Added: Cambridge IGCSE, English for speakers of other languages (ESOL), International GCSE (level 1/2 certificates).

  2. Published new version of rules which come into effect on 1 January 2017, and recommended DfE make changes to the qualifications covered by these rules.

  3. First published.