Inclusive Practice


Inclusive practice is an approach to teaching that recognises the diversity of students, enabling all students to access course content, fully participate in learning activities and demonstrate their knowledge and strengths at assessment. USW seeks to ensure that all of its learning and teaching provision is accessible and inclusive and aims to create an environment that is an inclusive place to work and study where an individual’s personal characteristics do not create barriers for them in any aspect of their work or study.

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Moving from adjustments to inclusivity

In the past, adjustments for disabled students tended to be made on a case-by-case basis. By contrast, inclusive practice (also called universal design for learning) sees students with disabilities as part of a very broad continuum of student abilities and needs, and rather than treat disabled students as special cases, seeks to identify and remove barriers in the curriculum that are incidental to the learning process, thereby benefiting all students. In the same way in which building a wheelchair ramp in a pavement benefits many more people than just wheelchair users (for example parents with pushchairs or people making deliveries with trolleys), building inclusivity into the curriculum and delivery methods benefits more than just those students with disabilities.


Why adopt inclusive practice into learning and teaching?

  • Inclusive practice enhances the learning experience of all students, particularly disabled students and those from backgrounds that have not traditionally participated in higher education.
  • Inclusive practice increases student retention.
  • Inclusive practice enhances quality and raises standards.
  • Inclusive practice removes unintended or incidental barriers to learning that prevent students achieving their potential (and that could make the university vulnerable to litigation from disabled students).


How CELT can help

CELT can advise and assist course leaders to find ways to enhance academic standards, improve retention, or remove barriers incidental to learning which prevent students from achieving a course’s learning outcomes. Course leaders who have courses undergoing validation or review, or who would like to ensure that their courses are accessible to disabled students, are encouraged to contact us; we can help you develop practical strategies for increasing retention and enhancing standards in courses with high drop-out rates or with high numbers of disabled/dyslexic students or students from backgrounds which have left them academically under prepared.


Resources and guidance

Marking Guidelines for Disabled Students.

Guidance on whether the university is required to make reasonable adjustments for obese students.

Guidance on the recording of lectures.

Developing an Inclusive Curriculum – powerpoint presentation.

The following is a list of organisations which bring together materials across the HE sector, or produce sector-wide guidance:

Equality Challenge Unit including guidance on disability law for academic staff

Equity and Excellence in Higher Education

University of Washington’s Do-It Centre (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology)


Contact

Please contact lyndsey.muir@southwales.ac.uk should you have any questions or if you wish to discuss any of these issues further.

Lyndsey Muir
Senior Lecturer in Educational Development
(01443) 6 54850