Tuesday 12th December 2017
Being held almost a year on from the publication of the Disabled Students Sector Leadership Group’s (DSSLG) report into Inclusive Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, this forum will be an opportunity to assess current practices and availability of support for disabled students.
Evaluating Current Provision – Implementing the DSSLG Report, Allocating Funding and Sharing Best PracticeDelegates will discuss the outcome from HEFCE’s Review of models of support for disabled students, due to be published in the Summer, which is looking to evaluate what support looks like and how to share best practice, particularly given HEFCE’s increase in funding for academic year 17/18 to help the sector to invest in disability access and services. Attendees will also consider how university processes can be evaluated, monitored and improved, as well as assess the extent to which the recommendations from the DSSLG report have been implemented so far.
Keeping Up with an Evolving Sector – Impact of cuts to DSA, Challenges to Universities and Potential for the TEFWith cuts to the Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) having come into force last September, universities are having to do more to fill the gap in support for disabled students. Delegates will assess what impact the cuts may have had on the number of disabled students applying to university, the challenges for universities in replacing the provision that was offered as well as what can be done to standardise a system of support. Sessions will also consider whether the upcoming Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) will encourage institutions to improve their approaches to disability student support, given its focus on learning environment, student outcomes and teaching quality, and with disabled access as an excellence measure.
Ensuring Support from Application to Graduation – Embedding Provision into Learning & Teaching, Logistical Assistance and Improving EngagementSessions at the forum will assess what needs to be done to ensure disability support is widely available throughout a student’s time at university, from assistance with applications to university, adequate and accessible accommodation, aid during lectures and exams (such as providing a scribe, assistive technology or extra time) as well as any other necessary provision throughout the student life-cycle to ensure student wellbeing and successful outcomes. Attendees will consider how inclusivity can be embedded into teaching and learning strategies and provide an institutional-wide approach to disability student support, including utilising data included in the NSS and the NUS’ Ensuring the student voice is heard survey and improved engagement with students and external partners. Delegates will also discuss whether enough support is being provided to students with specific learning difficulties (SpLD), building on recommendations from the previous HEFCE report, Support for Higher Education Students with Specific Learning Difficulties.