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Incorporating Universal Design Concepts Into Study Abroad


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On our increasingly diverse campuses, we strive to reach a range of students. Are we doing all we can to include students with disabilities? In this session we'll discuss the importance of actively welcoming students with disabilities into the study abroad process. Presenters will share suggestions about how to incorporate universal design concepts into programming and outreach. How do you talk about a program experience in an inclusive manner? What about working effectively with your disability services office? We'll discuss these questions and more during this interactive session and provide real solutions.

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Incorporating Universal Design Concepts Into Study Abroad

  1. 1. INCORPORATING UNIVERSAL DESIGN CONCEPTS INTO STUDY ABROAD Elizabeth Standaert, University of St. Thomas | Carol Larson, University of Pittsburgh
  2. 2. STARTING PRINCIPLES • What might it look like if a student with _______ participated in this program? • No student without a disability is going to be harmed by hearing this information!
  3. 3. INFORMATION WORTH SHARING • Is the campus in the middle of the city, on the outskirts, residential area, rural, by the beach? • What is the area's terrain like? • What is the typical transportation like? • Is there a typical course structure/format? • What sorts of resources are available to foreign students studying there (tutoring, writing center, teacher availability) or other support services that American students are familiar with being available?
  4. 4. INFORMATION WORTH SHARING • What is the housing situation typically like? (some right off campus while others may be farther; on-campus dorms; everyone takes public transit between home and school) • What sort of outside activities are typically done with this program? (organized activities or on your own activities)
  5. 5. DISABILITY RESOURCE OFFICE AND STUDY ABROAD OFFICE • Educate each other • United outreach
  6. 6. BE FAMILIAR WITH PROGRAMS/PROVIDERS • Make effort to know what accommodations are typically offered • Is provider receptive to questions from student, school, and parents? • Ask colleagues for their experiences • Be specific in your questions and if response isn’t what you need, look further
  7. 7. HOME ENVIRONMENT VS FOREIGN ENVIRONMENT • A foreign environment brings new needs • Figuring out what is needed is a learning process • Strategize with the Disability Resource Office
  8. 8. ONLINE RESOURCES • Mobility International USA
  9. 9. OUTREACH IDEAS • Educate all university offices of this mission • Include this message in all recruiting situations
  10. 10. Q&A
  11. 11. RESOURCE LIST • Access Assessment and Site Accessibility Questionnaire eaccessibility • Accommodations Request Form • Assessment Forms Search “Advising (disability type) exchange participants”
  12. 12. CONTACT • Elizabeth Standaert (763) 360-6447 • Carol Larson (412) 973-6864