Study and disability Up-to-date information on studying and disabilities, Uniability and disability services, accessible workspaces, exchange programmes for students with disabilities, financial support

Uniability and disability services

Uniability is an interest group of disability officers, people with disabilities and other interested parties. It aims to improve conditions for disabled students at all Austrian universities, and to represent the interests of people with disabilities in public forums.

Disability services departments offer the following services to students with disabilities:

  • Information and advice on studying and the study environment
  • Study support
  • Opportunities to share and learn from the experiences of disabled students
  • Representing disabled students
  • Expert advice on improving access to and in buildings, and on assistive technology
  • Conducting research on the situations faced by people with disabilities and chronic health conditions
  • Raising awareness

Moves are also underway to test the suitability of the individual fields of study for people with a range of different disabilities.

You can find a list of contacts covering all Austrian universities on the Uniability webpages, as well as information about the ABAK Project, which supports young academics with disabilities in their job search. 

Accessible workspaces

To provide better support for blind and visually impaired students, many universities can provide them with special computer workstations equipped with any assistive technology they might need, e.g. magnification software, Braille displays, large screens. Furthermore, disabled students are also offered personal support to help them learn to use these workstations independently.

Find out in advance whether the library at your university has workstations for students with disabilities.

Exchange programmes for students with disabilities

SOCRATES/ERASMUS mobility grant

The European Commission supports students and teaching staff with severe disabilities or exceptional needs who are participating in student exchanges as part of the Socrates/Erasmus programme.

The grant is composed of:

  • A basic grant from European Union funds
  • A grant from the Austrian government, funded by the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research

The mobility grant is not intended to cover all your living costs; it is designed to help you with extra costs you incur while getting around in the host country.

Financial support

Increased study grant

Students with disabilities receive an increased study grant of up to EUR 5,040 per year, depending on the severity of their disability. The grant is available if the student has been assessed as having a degree of disability of at least 50 per cent. Disabled students who receive family allowance must prove that they receive increased family allowance. Mature students can provide proof by means of a medical certificate.

As with the regular study grant, the study grant authority is responsible for the application.

Study support

The Studienförderungsgesetz provides for additional support for people experiencing financial hardship. The support is provided either as a one-off payment or in the form of a regular grant (e.g. as bridging payments to disabled students until they are entitled to claim another study grant).

To apply, contact the study grant authority directly. 

Social Fund of the Austrian Students’ Union

A fund has been set up at the Federal Representation of the Austrian National Union of Students (Bundesvertretung der Österreichischen Hochschülerinnen- und Hochschülerschaft) to provide financial support for students with disabilities.

Support from the Sozialministeriumservice

Under certain circumstances, the Sozialministeriumservice can grant a subsidy for barrier-free education in the amount of up to EUR 9,936 per year to compensate for additional expenses caused by a disability, e.g. for the costs of technical aids required for studying.

More detailed information on aid and support, the study contribution etc. can be found in the section on "University", also on oesterreich.gv.at.

Further links

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Last update: 8 February 2022
Responsible for the content:
  • Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research
  • Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection