About the Scheme

Please note: Currently the scheme is in abeyance whilst we respond to member feedback. Members of the Board of Directors have been working hard on proposals for a revised accreditation scheme and these proposals will be presented to the NADP Strategic Planning meeting at the start of April 2019. A full update will be given to members at our conference in June 2019 and information will be posted here and on JISCMail lists as soon as it is available.

Accreditation provides recognition that agreed professional standards have been met by a practitioner in the development of high-quality policy and provision for disabled learners, and/or students with learning difficulties, in post-16 education and training.

Compared to colleagues (e.g. careers advisers, counsellors, et al) whom they often work alongside, staff in disability services in post-16 education have few identifiable routes to secure specialised qualifications that are related to the range of tasks they undertake.

Our Accreditation offers specialist continuing professional development and support for a career pathway. It provides formal recognition of a practitioner having reached a particular level of knowledge, skills and experience. Accreditation also provides for the enhancing of knowledge and the spread of best practice.

Aims of Accreditation

The aims of the accreditation procedures and processes are to:

  • provide individual practitioners with formal, external recognition that they have reached a certain level of professional practice
  • help disability practitioners to develop their knowledge, skills, attitudes and critical powers
  • encourage critical reflections on current practices both in their base institution and more widely
  • promote increased collaboration between disability practitioners
  • identify and disseminate good practices
  • contribute to the enhancement of quality standards in disability services across the post-16 education sector
  • contribute to raising the status of and recognition for the roles and responsibilities associated with the work of disability practitioners


All fully paid members and associates of NADP are eligible to apply for Accredited Member status. However we suggest that applicants will find it hard to gain accreditation without having a fair amount of experience of working in a context that involves supporting disabled learners and/or all students with learning difficulties.

Those that wish to go on and seek Senior Accredited Member status will usually have significant experience of managing a service and/or aspects of the service, and also represent the service on a number of committees and groups within their institutions. We would expect to see that they have/ have had some influence on policy and/or practice change within the context in which they work.

Non-members are not eligible to apply for the Accredited Member scheme.