Rumbling…week 2

Whilst reading some of this week’s material, this question is cropping in my head but don’t think there can be a straight forward answer for it…

What about students who are not aware of their disability? Students who think that they are ‘not good’ at school? Is the system help them? Is the system actually helping them?

An institution needs to be proactive, needs to have accessibility structures in place as surely not all students with disabilities talk about their needs and others may not be even aware about what issues they may be encountering or what disability they are facing…


3 thoughts on “Rumbling…week 2

  1. This is a tricky one, Keith – but I think it affects all learners to some extent, not just disabled ones. I accept your point that there have to be accessibility structures in place, but how would you define proactive. My institution highlights help available to disabled students, asking students at the point of registration whether they consider themselves disabled etc but it is then the responsibility of the student to make the institution aware of their needs. Tutors may spot something that hasn’t been declared but we do not expect them to do this – at a distance this is difficult at any rate. A while back we had a complaint from a student who believed that we should have spotted the fact that they were dyslexic even though they themselves were unaware. They then asked for all their assignment to be remarked, going back several years. What would be your view in such a case?


  2. When saying that an institution should be proactive, I’m thinking of an institution which for example, has staff dedicated in supporting disabled students, staff who regularly identify needs which need to be met, staff who through allocated funds, update or upgrade assistive technologies which are made available to students….

    As you say, tutors may spot accessibility needs that students may have. I think that as a professional, a teacher needs to help students when faced with accessibility barriers.

    Yet a student cannot make such a demand as in your example!

    1. This week’s topic is somewhat related. In the Disability Discrimination Act, it is outlined that institutions are ‘expected to take reasonable steps to find out if a person is disabled.’ Thus the proper check should be in place in order to identify any disabilities that students may be facing.

      Yet the length in time with which the student reported and the mode of learning (distance) make it somewhat difficult for an institution to identify such needs.

      Apart from student’s disclosure of their disability, what other checks can an institution make in order to find out whether students are disabled? Moral and ethical issues need to be taken into consideration.

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