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asking for more time on uni assignments due to my diabetes?

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by hollyslot, Apr 26, 2019.

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  1. hollyslot

    hollyslot Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi,

    I am almost in my 3rd year of university, and I want to ask for more time on my assignments due to my t1d, because I feel like my diabetes prevents me from working sometimes, especially when my blood sugars are fluctuating.

    i try as hard as i can to manage my t1d, my hba1c is 7.0, but it affects me every day a lot.
    am i silly for thinking this? i dont know if im trying to ask my teachers to cut me 'too much slack'.

    what do others think?
     
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  2. MeiChanski

    MeiChanski Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello!
    I hope you're okay
    All I can say is, it does depend on your university extension policy on long term illnesses and it has to be a very good valid reason.
    I, myself have been at two different universities and one university wouldn't even accept my diabetes and severe hypoglycemic episode as a reason for an extension, because it is "foreseeable circumstances". Whereas my other university has accepted my two hypoglycemic episodes as a reason for an extension but only extended by a few days.

    I have never used my diabetes in general for an extension, only when I blacked out or fainted on the floor and in need of emergency services that I asked for an extension on my essays.
     
  3. hollyslot

    hollyslot Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    i see, sorry you had to go through that!
    ive never ever passed out in the 19 years of having it, but every day my diabetes will knock out time i could have spent working, which is why i wanted to ask for extra time or maybe not even extra time but some kind of thing that could make working and grading fairer for me.
     
  4. MeiChanski

    MeiChanski Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    That's understandable, maybe you could ask your student adviser? the person in charge of student well being and again, it does depend on your university's policy. I know I needed doctor's letters and ambulance notes as evidence when asking for an extension.
     
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  5. Deleted Account

    Deleted Account · Guest

    Under the disability discrimination act (DDA), workplaces, school, universities, ... are required to make "reasonable adjustments" to account for diabetes. By the sound of it there is a wide range of ways "reasonable adjustments" can be interpreted.
    I would say, it is worth asking and making your case with evidence of the impact diabetes makes to you.

    However, it is concerning that diabetes knocks out time every day. Thinking forward in your life, when you get a job, will you need extra time to complete tasks?
    Perhaps it would be useful to do some analysis of the time spent with diabetes, work out why and make some adjustments.

    Diabetes is not always easy (or should I say "rarely easy") but there are ways to make it easier. Talk to your teachers about your extension but also talk to you diabetes team to work out how diabetes can have less impact.
     
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  6. Deleted Account

    Deleted Account · Guest

    Just wondering if Theresa May asked the EU for extra time with her "Brexit assignment" :)

    (@hollyslot that was not a dig at you ... just my feeble attempt at diabetes humour!)
     
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  7. hollyslot

    hollyslot Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    honestly i dont understand how she is managing to keep her job whilst having diabetes. i dont agree with her political stance but well done to her for managing both.
     
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  8. Pipp

    Pipp Type 2 · Expert
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    Hi @hollyslot . I am not going to advise on management of your T1 diabetes, though would agree with @helensaramay that you need to consider why you are having the symptoms and work out a strategy.

    Regarding university and exam consessions/ coursework extensions, your student services ought to have in place policies to deal with the assistance required by students who have disabilities, or long term conditions, such as diabetes, that impact on their ability to study. If you didn’t make yourself known to them already, do so as soon as possible. You will need to provide medical evidence, perhaps a letter from GP, or diabetes nurse, of your condition and the impact it is having on your ability to complete course requirements. You will then be entitled to have an individual plan drawn up which can include such things as recommendations for flexibility in deadlines, and rest breaks during exams. Useful if you need to deal with a hypo. It can take time to get an individual plan put in place, but could be useful to get it sorted for your final year, which can be intense.

    Of course, with end of academic year fast approaching, you will need to act quickly to get those extensions for this year. So, in addition to student services welfare folks, you should talk to your tutors, again providing medical evidence of your immediate requirements to convince them you are not just a student who has been spending too much time at socialising. They get plenty of requests such as yours, and can be a bit cynical if you don’t provide supporting evidence.

    Best of luck with your studies. Once you get through the second year the rest is a bit of a doddle.
     
  9. EllieM

    EllieM Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Are you talking about time for blood tests (you're probably stuck with that unless you qualify for a libre) or time for hypos. If the latter then it should be possible to get to a better place, with help from your clinic or even here.
     
  10. hollyslot

    hollyslot Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    luckily my course doesn't have exams, so its just coursework i am worried about. i might speak to student welfare anyway but i feel like i might be asking for something i don't deserve. my diabetes is 'well controlled' (according to doctors) but i just feel like every day i will at least have one hypo and at least 2 high bgs, both of which make me feel really tired and unable to focus on work.
     
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  11. Pipp

    Pipp Type 2 · Expert
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    Then you do need to talk to student welfare people and your doctor.
    Best of luck.
     
  12. hollyslot

    hollyslot Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    i think i might bring it up seeing as it does affect me daily. i am currently writing down everything i eat (eg carb grams and calories), exercise i do, and blood sugars and insulin taken. i have had it for 19 years so its not like im new to it. i cant really see how much more i could do. i really feel like i try as hard as i can with it.
    i do worry about the future though and my job
     
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  13. Deleted Account

    Deleted Account · Guest

    Good luck @hollyslot
    Bear in mind you may not be new to type 1 diabetes.
    But you probably don’t have much experience of type 1 with the stress of your 3rd year at university.
    With so much that can affect our BG, I don’t think you can ever fully “know” diabetes.
    So don’t beat yourself up about your struggles and, hopefully you will find techniques to manage them.
     
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  14. Daibell

    Daibell LADA · Master

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    Hi. I think you need to stand back and judge whether any stress or bad days you are having are due to the diabetes or just being at University when it can be stressful at times. Being T1 shouldn't normally affect your day apart from keeping any eye on your BS by testing/injecting. If your BS control isn't good then that needs guidance from the GP/nurse. I would try to avoid asking for extra time as a T1 unless there are specific problems currently with BS control. BTW my last HBa1C was 7.3% and I got my hand smacked by my nice DN so I've been testing more frequently since and doing correction doses when needed.
     
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  15. Deleted Account

    Deleted Account · Guest

    @hollyslot you mention you are considered to have “good control” but if this is judged purely on your hb1ac, an average example of your BG, your diabetes team may not be aware of your daily high-low swings. As you are currently documenting everything, have you thought about sharing this diabetes diary with your team? They may be able to provide assistance with that information.
     
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  16. EllieM

    EllieM Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    It doesn't have to be like this. Talk to your clinic and get them to help you. Maybe they could give you a libre? (Set it up with xdrip(?) and you should be able to get warnings so that you can fend things off before you go too low or too high.)

    Personally, hypos are the thing I hate most about T1.
     
  17. Abigail18

    Abigail18 · Member

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    Hey,
    Hope your doing ok?
    In my personal experience my university has been very fair when I have needed extensions for complications of diabetes, as others say it depends on their policy. I would speak to student support as they will be able to advise you and also contact your tutor and just explain how it affects you.
     
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  18. hollyslot

    hollyslot Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    me too, i find them so debilitating. i am actually wearing a libre right now (but paid for myself) and my diabetes doctor has filed a thing to say i should get one on the nhs as it reduces my blood sugar finger testing so much and is very helpful for me.
     
  19. slbarron23

    slbarron23 · Active Member

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    You should definitely go and see your disability services team at the uni! I’m doing my masters at the minute and have a ‘student support plan’ gives me extra time in exams, a room to myself and they ‘stop the clock’ if I have to treat a hypo. Also make accordance’s for time management in regards to assignment and getting extensions :)
     
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  20. slbarron23

    slbarron23 · Active Member

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    As you’re in your 3rd year this won’t apply but anyone starting uni can apply for DSA for help with equipment (fridges, laptops, printers) for doing work at home so you don’t have to go into uni - https://www.gov.uk/disabled-students-allowances-dsas
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
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