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ADCET Webinar: Realising Disability Inclusion

ADCET was proud to partner with the Australian Tertiary Education Network on Disability (ATEND) This link takes you away from the ADCET page for this webinar.

Professor Carol Evans (Honorary visiting professor at Cardiff University and visiting professorial fellow at the University of Southampton) explored the current context of disability inclusion defined as the ‘extent to which higher education institutions (HEIs) support equal access to university and equal opportunities to do well for staff and students with disabilities (SSwD) compared to their non-disabled peers’.  

While disability inclusion is a key priority for higher education institutions around the world, the basics of provision for many students and staff with disabilities (SSwD) in HE are not being met. For many SSwD, including those who are successful, the additional physical and emotional labour involved in navigating the higher education landscape, places additional limits on potential. 

Utilising research from peer-reviewed academic articles, expert reports, and institutional data, and drawing on researcher experiences from over 50 countries, Carol discussed twelve key dimensions of effective disability inclusion practice that she identified with colleagues (staff and students). The interrelated nature of these dimensions led to the development of the Disability Inclusion Institutional Framework (DIIF). In this webinar, Carol outlined the key elements of the DIIF, and the promising areas of development identified from research and practitioner accounts, and also introduced a toolkit designed to support institutional approaches to disability inclusion. 

The DIIF draws on interactionist perspectives on disability acknowledging the complex interplay of impairments with an individual’s personal characteristics, the specific contextual and situational features SSwD encounter, and their responses to this within HE. Principles underpinning the DIIF are elaborated on within the DIIF Guide provided to support this session. 

Carol highlighted the importance of supporting the development of SSwD self-advocacy skills as integral to the entirety of the student lifecycle into, through and beyond HE, and career trajectories as part of this. 

Also she highlighted some of the ‘big ticket’ items identified as key to moving disability inclusion forward and some of the challenges inherent in this space. Finally, Carol explored the collaborative cross-sector possibilities in taking aspects of this work forward.

The webinar was aimed at all those concerned about enhancing disability inclusion in higher education (HE) to include leaders of disability inclusion provision at all levels within higher education and associate fields, professional services and specialist disability support teams, academics, student representative bodies, and all relevant stakeholders working with higher education institutions/colleges. 


Headshot of Carol Evans

Professor Carol Evans (Honorary visiting professor at Cardiff University and visiting professorial fellow at the University of Southampton

Carol is a global leader in research-informed inclusive assessment practices and pedagogy, who is passionately committed to enhancing inclusion for all within higher education. She is a non-executive board member at the University of Bournemouth, UK, and an honorary visiting professor at the universities of Cardiff and Southampton in the UK. Previous roles have included PVC (learning and teaching) at Griffith University, Australia, and strategic leadership roles in education and research at the universities of Birmingham, Southampton, Exeter, UCL; Institute of Education, KSS Deanery, London and Durham in the UK. Carol has produced world-leading research in assessment This link takes you away from the ADCET page and individual differences This link takes you away from the ADCET page, and has scaled-up inclusive practices across institutions as acknowledged in her receipt of National Teaching Fellow and Principal Fellowships, and a Collaborative and Spotlight award (CATE) from Advance HE.

Evans, C. (2021). Equity, agency and transparency: making assessment work better for students and academics This link takes you away from the ADCET page

Evans, C. (2021). Is your curriculum design limiting students’ learning potential? This link takes you away from the ADCET page

ADCET is hosted by the University of Tasmania