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Event: Disabled Students at University – Facilities, Support Services and the Impact of Funding Changes (January, 2017; London, UK)

Event: Disabled Students at University – Facilities, Support Services and the Impact of Funding Changes

Date: Thursday, 26th January 2017

Place: Central London

*** this event is CPD certified ***

Timed to follow the reform of the Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) – which includes a significant reduction in the range of support which can be funded and is due for introduction in September 2016 – this seminar will bring together key policymakers and stakeholders to discuss the immediate impact of the changes as well as steps that can be taken to address further challenges for disabled students’ in Higher Education. Planned sessions will look at the accessibility of campuses, examples of best practice in providing facilities and support services for disabled students – particularly in light of the funding reforms – as well as what more can be done to increase the number of disabled people entering HE in the first instance.

We expect attendees to include university and college leaders and support staff, deans and senior teaching staff; senior representatives from within the NHS and private support providers; assistive technology providers; lawyers; architects, university estates directors, construction companies and others involved in campus design and students’ and lecturers’ unions.

Sarah Howls, Head of Student Opportunity, HEFCE; Professor Geoff Layer, Vice Chancellor, University of Wolverhampton and Chair, The Disabled Students Sector Leadership Group and Paul Williams, Deputy Director, Student Funding Policy, Department for Education have agreed to deliver keynote addresses. Chris Brill, Senior Policy Advisor, Equality Challenge Unit; Dr John Conway, Principal Lecturer & Disability Officer, Royal Agricultural University and Director, National Association of Disability Practitioners; James Elliott, Disabled Students Officer, NUS; John Lamb, Executive Director, British Assistive Technology Association; Mei-Yee Man Oram, Senior Consultant, Accessible Environments and Co-Lead, Accessible Environments Team, ARUP and Liz Sayce, Chief Executive, Disability Rights UK have also agreed to speak at this seminar, as well as a senior speaker confirmed from the Office of the Independent Adjudicator.

Dr Lisa Cameron MP, Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group for Disability and Lord Holmes of Richmond, Disability Commissioner, Equality and Human Rights Commission have agreed to chair this seminar.

Link for more info: www.westminsterforumprojects.co.uk/forums/event.php?eid=1298&t=17783

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Now Booking: Disability Studies Student Society Symposium (Liverpool Hope University, UK: June, 2016)

The Disability Studies student society symposium at Liverpool Hope University hopes to bring together students across the North-West to share, discuss and advise on research methodologies in disability studies. The symposium is open to students, both undergraduate and postgraduate, to explore a range of innovative and creative methodologies within the growing field of disability studies.

This is a free event, however for catering purposes please confirm your attendance via the registration form which can be found here.

We invite submissions of abstracts of up to 300 words for paper presentations that detail methodological approaches to research projects, both those that have been completed and those that are currently underway.

The student symposium will be held at Liverpool Hope University on Wednesday 22nd June 2016. A full schedule for the symposium will be updated and available shortly as will be details for registration.

Abstracts of up to 300 words should be submitted for consideration by 29th April 2016 to12000935@hope.ac.uk Presenters will be informed via email by 22nd May 2016.

For more information please follow this link https://studentsymposiumliverpoolhope.wordpress.com/

DRF News

Reminder: A Week of ‘Disability’ Events (May, 2014: Sheffield, UK)

If you are in/around Sheffield next week and are into ‘disability’, you are certainly in for a treat. There are 3 events (detailed below) which might just take your fancy. Info below.

Event 1: the next (and final for this academic year) DRF seminar

Date/Time: Wednesday, 7th May 2014 (10.30am-12.30pm)

Slot 1:  Joshua Sawiuk (Univ. of Leeds, UK): The Importance of the Social Life for Disabled Students in Higher Education

Slot 2: Charlotte Jones (Univ. of Sheffield, UK): Intersex and/as Disability: Exploring the tensions between identity, medicalisation and social justice

Venue: The seminar will be held in Room 10110 (first floor) of the Arundel Building, 122 Charles Street, City Campus, Sheffield Hallam University, S1 1WB.  For a map of City Campus click here.

To offer to present in 2014-2015 seminars or for more detailed access information please contact: Rebecca Mallett: r.mallett@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 4669 or Jenny Slater: j.slater@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 6691.

Event 2: Symposium: Disability and Austerity: Pan-national Reflections

Date/Time: Thursday, 8th May 2014 (2pm-5pm)

Venue: University of Sheffield – Education Building, Room 1.02.

Event 3: Gender and Disability: Asking Difficult Questions

Date: Saturday, 10th May 2014

Venue: University of Sheffield- Humanities Research Institute (HRI), 34 Gell Street, Sheffield, S3 7QY.

DRF News

Invitation of Participation in Research Project: Cyber Campuses

[Posted on behalf of Louis Nisiotis: louis.nisiotis@student.shu.ac.uk]

My name is Louis Nisiotis and I am a doctoral student at Sheffield Hallam University.  I am conducting an experimental study as part of my PhD degree and I would like to invite you to participate.

My research aims to analyse the flexibility of cyber campuses to support learning and overcome barriers that restrict students from accessing and participating in the University.

There are many reasons why some students cannot regularly attend university, varying from temporary illnesses to chronic medical conditions, army obligations, caring commitments, etc. that restrict their travel from, to and around the educational institution. Attendance and participation in learning is an invaluable experience where the students not only obtain important information but also develop their understanding and skills by interacting with peers and tutors. To support these students, institutions are adopting E-Learning technologies to allow them to access education at a distance. One of these technologies is the use of virtual worlds in the form of cyber campuses.

Cyber campuses are specially designed meeting points that operate on Multi-User Virtual Environments (like Second Life), where users can gather virtually and exchange learning materials, communicate and collaborate in a state of the art 3D environment over the Internet.

For the needs of my research, I have designed a cyber campus prototype and I am investigating its flexibility to support students learning and overcome barriers of access and participation to the university.  To perform this investigation, I am conducting a series of experimental studies that requires the participation of current or recent students.

I invite members of the DRF who, for any reason might face obstacles that restrict their attendance and participation to the university, to participate in two experimental sessions that will be held in the virtual world.

During this unique experience, you will have the opportunity to immerse in the virtual world, virtually meet and interact with other members in real time and attend a learning scenario simulation from the comforts of your own environment.

The sessions are scheduled as follows: (dates and times of the sessions will be mutually agreed.)

Session 1: Introduction, orientation and virtual lecture. In this session, you will learn how to navigate, communicate and interact with other users and objects in the virtual world. After that, a virtual lecture based on the use of virtual worlds in education will take place. Following the lecture, you will undertake a virtual quiz and then participate in a group activity.

Session 2: Focus Group discussion. This session will take place on a different date. In this session, we shall virtually gather together in a friendly focus group and discuss: What are the barriers that make your access and participation to the university difficult? And how the use of the virtual worlds can overcome some of the barriers that restrict you from attending the university.

To participate in this experiment, you will have to install specific viewer software on your computer, login and interact in the virtual world with other participants using a virtual character (Avatar). During this study, you will be asked to complete two surveys and participate in a virtual focus group.

I will be happy to answer any questions you have about the study.  Thank you for your consideration.

If you would like to participate, please email me directly expressing your interest so I can provide you with more information and materials.

If you are interested to participate, I encourage you to join my forum for discussion http://learninvw.com/forum

With kind regards, Louis Nisiotis

Research Student – Sheffield Hallam University

DRF News

PhD Studentship Opportunity (University of Hull, UK)

To celebrate the University’s research successes, the University of Hull is offering the following PhD Studentship in the Faculty of Education entitled ‘Giving disabled students a voice in schools’. The primary supervisor: Dr Kiki Messiou (K.Messiou@hull.ac.uk) and more informaion can be found here.

  • Closing date: Friday 2nd March.      
  • Studentships will start in September 2012
DRF News

CFP: Symposium *On researching inclusion through inclusive research* (11th Nov 2011, MMU)

Critical Disability Studies Symposium *On researching inclusion through inclusive research*

FREE! symposium hosted by Manchester Metropolitan University

Date: 11th November 2011 ~ 10am-12pm

Venue: New Lecture Theatre, Elizabeth Gaskell Campus, Manchester Metropolitan University.

This symposium would like to bring together people interested and involved in research and practice concerning disability, education, co-research, self-advocacy and inclusion.

People who are interested can submit papers on following topics:

*      Exploring co-researching and what is inclusive research?
*      Exploring accessible literature, conferencing, and how academia shares its findings?
*      Exploring how we can bridge practice and research?
*      Exploring accessibility of higher education for people with learning difficulties?
*      Exploring how self-advocacy can tie in with research and research with self-advocacy?

Keynote will be facilitated by Toon Maillard (Guest scholar and researcher at the Critical Disability Studies Unit at MMU from Ghent University, Belgium)

Deadline for paper abstracts: 17th October 2011.

Submit abstracts via email to Toon Maillard: toon.maillard@ugent.be or Dan Goodleyd.goodley@mmu.ac.uk

DRF News, Events and Conferences

Seminar Announced on ‘Investigating Socio-Technical Experiences of Disability in Social Media’ (8th March 2011)

The following event has been added to the Other Events section.

Event: Centre for Culture & Disability Studies (CCDS) Research Forum *FREE!*

Date: 8th March 2011 ~ 4pm – 6pm

Venue: WAREE036 (Powys Lecture Theatre), Liverpool Hope University, UK. 

  • ‘Disability 2.0: Investigating Socio-Technical Experiences of Disability in Social Media’ ~ Sarah Lewthwaite (Learning Sciences Research Institute, School of Education, University of Nottingham, UK)

Abstract: For many young people, social networks are an essential part of the student experience. Sarah Lewthwaite explores disabled students’ experiences of disability in social networks to understand how dis/ability difference is ascribed and negotiated within such networks, and the impact it has on university life. This research is firmly located within the social sciences, drawing on the thinking of Foucault to develop understandings of disability and power relations online. However, its research object, the socio-technical mediation of disability, is interdisciplinary, drawing on research territories that are unfamiliar to many disability studies researchers. Sarah gives a backstage look at negotiating a path through interdisciplinary disability studies research, touching on information sciences and human computer interaction, and the particular problems and opportunities that this kind of activity presents. She introduces the notion of ‘bricolage’ as a user-friendly multi-perspective methodology and research approach that has enabled her to develop new, technology-enhanced and accessible research methods, and develop a research lens drawing on complementary methods from Activity Theory, Phenomenography, Discourse Analysis and Case Study. It will be an interactive session aimed at researchers and students, but prior knowledge of the methods and technologies presented is not necessary. Following on from an orientation in social media research for disability studies, Sarah will also talk about the findings of her research, which consider the ways in which social technologies reposition disabled people within taxonomies of identity, enabling some and dis-abling others.

For further information from the organisers, please contact: Dr. Ria Cheyne: cheyner@hope.ac.uk

DRF News

Disability Research Gets a New Doctor

We are thrilled to announce that on 22nd November 2010, long-standing and dedicated DRF member Sarah Lewthwaite successfully navigated her viva.  Examined by Prof. Jane Seale (Plymouth) and Dr. Kay Hawe (Nottingham), a summary of the thesis is below and more information about Sarah’s work can be found on our People and Publications pages.  Congratulations Dr Sarah!!!

PhD Title: Disability 2.0: Student dis/Connections.  A study of student experiences of disability and social networks on campus in Higher Education.

PhD Summary: Sarah’s thesis explores the networked experiences of disabled students to examine how dis/ability difference is ascribed and negotiated within the social network Facebook.  The thesis presents 18 case studies that generated 34 internet-enabled phenomenographic interviews.  The research draws on the thinking of Foucault and the notion of bricolage as an approach to research that lies at the juncture between disability studies, educational research and social media.  The research finds that networks are shown to have the potential to reposition disabled students within taxonomies of identity.  Two interrelated conclusions are drawn.  First, social networks are essential to student life, yet not all students can access them on an equal basis, introducing a digital divide with material social outcomes.  Second, networks represent a redefinition of dis/ability where some students with impairments are non-disabled, or may adopt non-disabled interactions, where others do not.  Diversity is thus suppressed and students disabled by the network are doubly disadvantaged as disability is rendered invisible and the social and digital divide of the network is reinforced.

Events and Conferences, Inclusion

(Re)thinking inclusivity in higher education event

Call for presentations and bookings to participate in forum to share ‘inclusive’ practice within higher education, 4th April 2011 at Sheffield Hallam University.

Sheffield Hallam University, in partnership with both Leeds Metropolitan University and the University of Sheffield, is delighted to be hosting this unique and free one-day event. This Show ‘n’ Share Fair will provide an opportunity for staff to network, share “inclusive” practice and generate new ideas to enhance innovation in teaching practice and support for all students, embracing the diversity each student brings into the realm of higher education.

You are invited to submit a proposal to present and share an aspect of your “inclusive” practice with interested colleagues. This is an opportunity for our colleagues to learn first-hand and ask questions about the uniqueness of your teaching and support practice which engages students from diverse backgrounds. For more information about submitting a proposal please click here.

Of course, one does not have to show ‘n’ share something to attend this event. If interested in only attending and witness the various inclusive and innovative teaching and practices that are occurring in our very own institutions, please register click here.

Click here for more specific information on event

DRF News

Course seeks to empower disabled leaders (UK)

In 2009, 425,063 students enrolled in higher and further education colleges in the UK. 5.8% of these students were disabled.  Many disabled students realise their full potential, enjoy their education experience and pursue careers and leadership roles in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors. For some, the barriers are too great.

Part of this is the current lack of representation on boards and within senior management teams where the voice of disabled people is silent – because they are simply not represented or given the chance to lead.

Common Purpose’s campaign and leadership development course for young disabled leaders aims to change this.

The course: Starting in 2010, Common Purpose will help 240 higher and further education students in the UK develop the skills and knowledge to pursue leadership roles throughout their studies and beyond. Common Purpose will run a three-day leadership development course in the winter and summer of each year. Forty disabled university students will participate in each three-day course.

Common Purpose will also develop an online resource of information and inspiration for disabled students throughout the United Kingdom and around the world.

Common Purpose will also run an annual one-day workshop for students graduating from higher and further education to help them identify and actively pursue potential leadership roles.

For more information please visit the Common Purpose website.