We know sudden and severe life events can make it hard for you to do well in your Dietetic Skills Recognition (DSR) exams. If you get sick or have other serious difficulties right before your exams, you might get special consideration.

Special consideration

We have a process for DSR candidates to apply for special consideration for their dietetic exams. This includes the multiple-choice question (MCQ) exam and the oral exam.

If you experience severe or sudden circumstances, you might be eligible to apply. This could be if you get sick or face serious difficulty on the day of your exam. Or in the days before your exam.

To get special consideration, your situation must be beyond your control.

Reasons for special consideration could include:

  • being in the hospital on the day of your exam
  • a death in your immediate family
  • having a life-threatening disease

If you have an ongoing medical condition, please contact our DSR Administrator before your exam. If appropriate, we'll make arrangements to help you sit your exam.

Reasons we wouldn't usually give special consideration for include:

  • a minor illness
  • stress related to your exam performance
  • stress related to personal relationship issues

Even if you think your circumstances fit our criteria, we'll review your situation on its merits. We can't guarantee you'll get special consideration.

Missing your exams

We expect you to attend your exam on the day. Missing your exam doesn't mean you'll get special consideration.

When you apply, you need to include evidence showing why you couldn't attend. This could be a doctor's certificate.

Applying for special consideration

Step 1
Get a written report

You need to send us a report written by an appropriate professional. The report should describe the severity of your situation and why you should get special consideration.

An appropriate professional might include:

  • your doctor
  • your surgeon
  • another health professional involved in your treatment

We don't usually approve special consideration without this written report.

Step 2
Apply within 3 days

You must complete the online application form no more than 3 working days after the date of your exam.

You will need to be logged in to access the form.

If possible, include your professional's written report as an attachment to your application. If you can't, you have up to 5 working days from the date of your application to send us your report.

Apply for Special Consideration

Step 3
Include supporting documents

We need to know everything about your situation, including the severity, timing and how it affected your ability to sit your exam.

To help us understand your claim, please include all relevant supporting documents or evidence.

This could include:

  • medical certificate
  • death certificate
  • hospital papers

Or any other evidence which helps us understand your request for special consideration.

Step 4
Pay the application fee

You must pay a fee when you apply for special consideration.

See our skills recognition fees.

Step 5
Wait to hear from us

Our General Manager, Accreditation and Recognition Services will consider your application.

It usually takes about 4 weeks to review and make a decision.

Once we know the outcome of your application, we'll contact you in writing.

Application time limit

You must submit your request for special consideration no more than 3 working days after the date of your exam.

You have up to 5 working days from the day of your request to send us your report from an appropriate professional.

We might not consider late applications.

Special consideration outcomes

Once we review your application, you'll get one of these three outcomes:

  • special consideration for marking your exam
  • opportunity to resit your exam
  • no special consideration

Special consideration

Our examiners will take your situation into account when marking your exam.

Resitting your exam

We'll contact you to make arrangements to sit the next scheduled exam.

You'll pay a reduced fee to resit the exam.

You can resit the MCQ exam and oral exam up to 3 times each.

If your special consideration situation happened during your exam, it's counted as a sitting. If it was your first exam sitting, you'll have up to 2 more attempts to sit your exam.

If your special consideration situation happened before your exam, it's not counted as one of your 3 exam attempts.

No special consideration

If you sat your exam, we'll mark it without any special consideration.

If you missed your exam, you need to apply to sit the next scheduled exam. You'll have to pay the full fee again.

Appealing your decision

We don't have an appeals process for your special consideration outcome.

If you want to appeal your exam results, see our appeals process.

Get in touch

If you have questions about appealing your DSR exam results, contact us at dsr@dietitiansaustralia.org.au

Find out how dietitians with overseas qualifications can apply for Dietetic Skills Recognition (DSR) to become an Accredited Practising Dietitian in Australia.
If you think there's been an error, you might be able to appeal your DSR assessment or exam results. Learn how to lodge an appeal and what to expect.
See our fees for overseas dietitians to apply for Dietetic Skills Recognition, skills migration assessments and mutual recognition to live and work in Australia.