Bursary for Students with Disabilities (BSWD)

The Basics

What is the Bursary for Students with Disabilities (BSWD)?

The Bursary for Students with Disabilities provides aid to students self-identifying as having either permanent or temporary disabilities. This bursary assists with the costs of disability-related services or equipment, such as tutors, note-takers, interpreters, braillers or technical aids that are required to participate in postsecondary studies.

Learn more about the BSWD on the OSAP website.

Who is eligible for BSWD?

Full-time and part-time students who:

  • Self-identify as having a permanent or temporary disability on the OSAP application
  • Have disability-related educational costs for services or equipment that are not covered by another agency or service
  • Require these services/equipment to participate in post-secondary studies
  • Have discussed accommodations with Student Accessibility Services


Proof of Disability

Change for 2018/19: The OSAP Disability Verification form is now the only acceptable proof of disability.

Hand-in a completed OSAP Disability Verification form (PDF) to verify your status as a student with a permanent disability.

Why self-identify as a student with a disability with OSAP?

  • You can apply for OSAP for Full-Time Students at a 40% course load
  • You can choose between OSAP for Full-Time Students or OSAP for Part-Time Students with a 40-59% course load
  • You could receive the Canada Student Grant for Students with Permanent Disabilities
  • You may be considered for the Bursary for Students with Disabilities (BSWD) if accommodations are needed

How to Apply

  • Apply for OSAP for Full-Time Students or OSAP for Part-Time Students and self-identify as a student with a permanent disability
  • Submit your OSAP Disability Verification form to SFAS
  • Meet with Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to discuss accommodations and complete the BSWD application
  • SAS sends the BSWD application to SFAS
  • Application is processed if eligible
  • Bursary funding is credited to the McMaster student account
  • Student Accounts pays the BSWD funding via cheque or direct deposit (depending on student’s preference in Mosaic)
  • Student purchases equipment or services and submits receipts to SFAS by deadline

Student Commitment

You need to do the following:

  • Submit OSAP Disability Verification form to SFAS
  • Update your mailing address on Mosaic
  • Enroll for direct deposit to have the bursary funding deposited in your bank account
  • Purchase all approved items/services once the bursary is received
  • Submit receipts to SFAS verifying the payment of all items within 30 days (all ongoing services by the end of the term)
  • Repay any unused portion of the BSWD to SFAS

What’s New!

Travel & Exchange Scholarships: Going on exchange or studying abroad this summer or next year? Apply for Travel & Exchange Scholarships! Deadline: March 29. More info on scholarships.

Summer Undergraduate Bursary: Applications are open in Mosaic. Apply by clicking “apply for financial aid” and completing the application found under the “aid by application tab”. Deadline: April 12. Learn more about this new summer bursary.

Course load calculator: Not sure about your course load percentage for OSAP? Check out our new guide on how to calculate it! Course load guide (non-Engineering). Engineering course load guide.

Scholarship applications are OPEN: Don’t miss out on this easy money! There are awards for all faculties and programs, all undergrad years and both academic AND community work. Apply in Mosaic by clicking the “Apply for Aid and Awards” tile. Find scholarships under the “Aid By Application” tab. More info on scholarships.  


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