SAILS Community of Practice for staff supporting students with disabilities

Image of students on the beach from SAILS websiteI recently attended a SAILS community of practice meeting for staff supporting students with disabilities. I attend these meeting regularly, and they are open to all staff interested in developing a more inclusive practice. I attend not only for my own CPD, but also to offer any support that I feel that we here at SALT, and in fact, colleagues elsewhere on campus, can provide.  It was a great opportunity in itself to meet other people who strive to support others as they learn and teach.  I recommend that you attend every so often to keep yourselves up to date with current developments, initiatives, and processes. Remember that inclusivity is a journey, not a destination and that we can all be better at what we do.

Today I was asked to complete a feedback questionnaire, and to add my comments and suggestions. I was asked ‘What might I do as a result of this meeting?’.  We have all put this type of question on our feedback forms, but it struck me that I hadn’t thought about what I would be doing, other than selfishly enjoying its fruitfulness!  So I was duly prompted to share what I had gained from the session.  My main takeaway is that you shouldn’t take departmental titles at their face value in terms of what they can offer you. Take the Transcription Center for example. They provide an amazing service to support people with a visual impairment, (not only for Swansea University students and staff either) see their web page for details of their breadth. As well as giving an overview of what her department does, Tina also gave advice and guidance on how best to support all our students and colleagues when we communicate with them, by considering the methods we use and by making small changes to our practices. (See the guide below for details.)

Here are the papers that were shared at the meeting and the links to the departments presenting. Enjoy!

STAS-Presentation- COP 26-04-2018 Link to their Website: https://myuni.swan.ac.uk/myuni-academic-study-services/cas/stas/

SUTC ppt SAILS 26.04.2018 by Tina Weber. Link to their Website: http://www.swansea.ac.uk/library/using-the-library/sutc/

Managing Distressed Students 18-04-18 by Nigel Mason. Link to their Website: http://www.swansea.ac.uk/wellbeing/autistic_spectrum_conditions_service/

Please let me know what you think, and if there is anything that I can help with in terms of signposting for various support systems, please get in touch: m.j.jack@swansea.ac.uk, or take a look at the CDP Inclusivity patch on Blackboard by clicking the images below and following the instructions guides.  You should also take a look at the SAILS website here: http://sails.swan.ac.uk/


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