Managing all aspects of uni life with digital support

Victoria's story in her own words

I am currently a PhD student, living in Manchester. For me, I never thought I’d go to university, it was never something I had planned. As a result of this I’ve had to get used to advocating for my needs, however sometimes this can be tricky. Throughout the first year of my degree, I had no diagnosis or access to any support, this made my educational journey difficult. However, eventually I gained a formal diagnosis, which enabled me to access the support I needed to be able to flourish. I do have a very close support network at home, however on university campus I find I’m easily overwhelmed.

I was given access to Brain in Hand via Disabled Students Allowance, and this has made such a difference to my studies. Brain in Hand helps me to organise myself and my workload, as most of my studies are independent it can be challenging for me to set up a routine and keep focused. I also have my app paired with my smart watch, which gives me much needed reminders to stay on track and remember important appointments. I find that I’m a very anxious person, especially in social situations and meetings, and I use my Brain in Hand solution packs to manage this. The solutions are tailored to my own needs and I can use them as and when I need them. 

Getting started with Brain in Hand

To begin with, I met with Clare, my personal coach at Brain in Hand who discussed my support needs, goals and challenges, and highlighted ways that Brain in Hand could support me most. Clare was incredibly helpful in showing me how to use the app, enabling me to feel confident in using it on my own. Everything was explained in full, in an easy to process way, using online examples and illustrations.


Brain in Hand allows me to be in control of my university experience. It acts as a much needed support when I need it most.

Brain in Hand provides me with the reminders to stay on track when my ADHD brain becomes distracted.

There are times when I’ll be on campus and things are extra overwhelming, too many noises, bright lights and everything just feels ‘wrong’. Times like these are when I use my Brain in Hand to identify exactly how I feel, and find a solution which is able to quickly calm me down before things escalate.

If things become particularly bad, I have the option to press red and receive contact from a responder via text who can also notify someone in my support network. This is helpful as often when overwhelmed I find it hard to communicate.

Thanks, Brain in Hand.

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