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TLC - Creating an Inclusive Curriculum


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Heather Davidson and Leslie Robinson

Published in: Education
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TLC - Creating an Inclusive Curriculum

  1. 1. Feedback and Assessment: Embracing Diversity
  2. 2. Project Team• Heather Davidson• Leslie Robinson• Sue Braid• Gill Molyneaux• Helen Staffordsupported by• Chrissi Nerantzi• Donna Berwick
  3. 3. What is inclusive Teaching?
  4. 4. • The Higher Education Academy defines ‘inclusion as ‘the enabling of full and equitable participation in and progression through higher education for all prospective and existing students.• Inclusive teaching means recognising, accommodating and meeting the learning needs of all your students. It means acknowledging that your students have a range of individual learning needs and are members of diverse communities. Inclusive teaching avoids pigeonholing students into specific groups with predictable and fixed approaches to learning.• Range of individual learning needs in relation to international students, students with learning difficulties, students with disabilities. Is there a typical student? What is inclusive teaching?
  5. 5. Higher Education Academy Project• Overall aim – to develop an inclusive culture in Higher Education• 16 Universities• Initially a year long project• 9 strands – feedback and assessment has been selected as UoS focus• Task : to develop inclusive feedback and assessment across the University
  6. 6. Structure of the Project• Vision statement and Abstract• Staff and Student Engagement• Staff• Representative from each school to assist with identifying existing good practice• Discuss with project team assessment options appropriate to each school to form content of an inclusive assessment and feedback toolkit• Assist with disseminating toolkit• Audit of impact• Student Involvement
  7. 7. Inclusive practice• takes a coherent approach which is anticipatory and proactive• has a strategy for delivering equal opportunities and diversity policies• involves the whole institution• matches provision to student needs• incorporates regular reflection, review and refinement of strategies and methods that actively involve all students
  8. 8. What is inclusive...• Assessment?• Feedback?• Why Salford?• Why now?• ASPIRE
  9. 9. Inclusive practice• ow0• ZM I see what you mean... from my point... we should... This is interesting.... I could
  10. 10. Models of InclusivityAssimilation Alternative Inclusive provision culture Limited Transformativeinstitutional Reactive approach. response. approach. Inclusive & Student Separate flexible integration policies and policies, into an practices for procedures and existing particular practices focus system. individuals or on success for groups. all.
  11. 11. Concepts to consider• Medical model of disability/difference• Social model of disability/difference• Power difference between Staff/Student
  12. 12. Practice ExamplesTeaching• All students receive lecture notes 1 week prior to lecture• Lecture information provided in range of formats – audio, PowerPoint, PodcastAssessment• Choice of assessment format for all studentsFeedback• Personalised feedback in a format that is meaningful for the student• Audio, podcast• Traditional? Innovative?
  13. 13. Case studies
  14. 14. Case Study 1: Is anybody out there?A student who uses a wheelchair, and who has slow keyboarding skills, uses assistive technology (eg a one-handedkeyboard) and is required to participate in on-line discussions via a Virtual Learning Environment as a part of theassessment, at a designated time during the week.However, the slow keyboarding skills of the student means that by the time he has typed a response to a thread, theconversation has moved on, and he is unable to engage in any dialogue. The highly dynamic nature of this assessmentprocess means that the student is being placed at an unfair disadvantage, and this becomes clear to the tutor when helooks at the results of the discussionThe tutor identifies several options:1. Offer a scribe who can type out the student’sresponses;2. Ask for the student to write a reflection on thediscussion, rather than contribute to it;3. Remove the on-line discussion from the assessmentprocess, returning instead to a conventional seminarformat4. Alter the ‘chat’ function to something more akin to anotice-board, whereby thoughts and responses can beposted on a limited number of topics throughout the ?assessment process.Questions1. Which option is most suited to the principles of inclusive assessment and why?2. Do you see any barriers with this option?
  15. 15. Case Study 2: Death by Exam Questions 1. Did the tutor take the best course ofA student with dyslexia is on an English course that is action?assessed at its conclusion on the basis on a series ofexamined essays. The student’s writing skills are slow. 2. Was the approach taken an example ofLegibility and spelling/grammar are improved when the assimilating, alternative or inclusivestudent uses a word processor, and this is the student’s assessment practice?preferred method of written communication, as it also 3. Were there any alternative solutionsmakes for clearer and more easily reviewed text. This which would demonstrate inclusivemethod, however, is even slower than hand-writing for this practice?student. The assessment is intended to consist of two 4hour exams, with the students completing one long essayquestion and two short essay questions in each.Tutor’s action: It is believed that the student would not,even with extended time, be able to fully demonstrate hisability and understanding, and as such the possibility ofreplacing the 4 hour examination with either a 7 day openpaper, or with assessed coursework, is considered. Theseoptions, however, are rejected as the tutor is aware thatmany students without disabilities may have learning stylesthat are not best suited to assessment under examinationconditions, and it is felt that the dyslexic student maytherefore be gaining an unfair advantage, in theseparticular circumstances.In the end, the student is assessed via a 2 day open paperand one 3 hour examination, in which he attempts thesame 2 short essay questions as other students. Thestudent is allowed to use a computer for this exam.
  16. 16. Case Study 3: Portfolio“Study in Higher Education” is a first term, year ‘0’ module designed to assist students indeveloping the necessary study skills and learning strategies required for a successfulundergraduate career.Previously, the module was assessed by means of an extended essay but concerns about theincreasingly diverse student population, and the fact that the essay form of assessment is rarelyused in Science led to a change to a portfolio assessment.The module is now assessed using a portfolio designed around criteria, based on the learningoutcomes of the module, but the means by which these criteria are satisfied are entirely flexible.This provided students with some independence in selecting ways of delivery best suited todemonstrate their strengths and abilities through articles, lab reports and coursework. Studentsare strongly encouraged to use pieces of coursework completed as part of their programme ofstudy, which has been enhanced after marking as a result of feedback.Questions1. In what way does the new method of assessment address the tutors concerns about the original approach?2. Does the change in assessment method demonstrate inclusive practice?3. What do you perceive to be the barriers of introducing a portfolio as a method of assessment?4. How might you engage staff members to try this method?
  17. 17. Case Study 4 : Decisions, decisions! Course: MSc Health and Social Care: Module: Methods of Enquiry Standard assessment method: Written plans with written formative feedback New method: Optional oral presentation or written draft. Purpose of assessment method: Formative Description This was a formative piece of assessment. The purpose of the assessment was to support the students’ written research proposals. An oral presentation was offered as a possible option to replace the written formative assessment . Students were given 10 minutes to present their proposals by whatever method they preferred.Questions1. What do you think the strengths of this approach might be?2. What do might be the barriers?3. Might such an option be introduced into summative assessment processes?4. How could you engage staff members to try this method?
  18. 18. Questions 1. Is this an example of assimilating, alternative or inclusive assessment?Case Study 5: Video Star 2. How might written assessments beA student has a significant hearing impairment. As a adapted within your school to take intoconsequence of this he was having great difficulty in consideration where English is not thewriting the contextual studies assignment to the students first language?required standard as he did not have anunderstanding of the English needed. The student’s 3. What would be the barriers to this?language of communication was BSL. This meant thathe would fail his HND because of his lack of English 4. How might you engage staff members toat the required level. design alternative assessments?Action: Rather than try to improve his English, in co-operation with the validating body it was felt betterif he presented his assignment in BSL. This would bevideoed, with an interpreter present and voiceover.It would have to be of the same standard and themarking would be looking for the same criteria as if itwas written. Therefore there would have to be thesame level of academic debate as with a writtenassignment; the only difference would be in themethod of it being recorded.
  19. 19. Case Study 6: Say it out loudAs part of a pilot study, fifteen student volunteers submittedsamples of their work for formative feedback. The workincluded essays, parts of dissertations and written reflections.After reading students’ work, feedback was recorded on adesktop PC and converted to mp3 format . The mp3 files werethen sent to the students as email attachments. Semistructured interviews with the students took place within 3weeks of them receiving this feedback.Overall, the students responded very positively to this type offeedback. Reasons cited included: it was easier to understandbecause handwriting is often illegible; it had more depthbecause possible strategies for solving problems wereincluded rather than just stating what the problems were; andit seemed ‘more genuine’, indicating that speech is received ina more personal way than writing. In what ways might this be considered inclusive practice in providing feedback?2. What do you perceive to be the barriers?3. How might you engage staff members to try this method?
  20. 20. Case studies have been synthesised from the following sources• Resources/disability/assessingdisabledstudent s.pdf• page=10494• works/sig/ia.asp• newsletters/bulletin22p5.pdf
  21. 21. next steps•Where are we now?•Getting involved•Blackboard module•Student representation•Output
  22. 22. Where are we now?• Senior Management Support• University wide developments• Research project• 2 phases• Student volunteers• Staff champions• Evaluation of practice• Report
  23. 23. Focus• Inclusive feedback and assessment as defined by students• Student engagement• Authentic/Meaningful• Impact
  24. 24. How can you help?• Blackboard module• Student focus groups• Examples of good practice• Engagement with project developments