Overview

12 Jul, 20229:30 am-3:30 pm

The Disabled Student Forum 2022 will examine the next steps for improving outcomes and enhancing the experience for all disabled students across higher education post-Covid-19.

The 2022 Disabled Students Forum will be an opportunity to discuss the next steps for improving accessibility of teaching and learning and enhancing the student experience for all disabled students in higher education. The forum will provide best practice guidance on how to ensure hybrid teaching models are fully accessible and inclusive post-Covid-19, and insights into how to embed the student voice in service design.

This will be an opportunity to consider the data on the challenges the sector faces and evidence-based policies to tackle these challenges, through a series of keynote speeches, panel discussions, and interactive workshops, as well as cross-sector networking and sharing best practice with colleagues.

What to expect:

  • Breakdown of the key accessibility and inclusion challenges the higher education sector faces post-Covid-19, and guidance on the next steps every university should be taking
  • Best practice for improving accessibility of hybrid teaching and learning models, and digital services
  • Evaluating what assistive technology solutions universities should be providing, and how to ensure equal awareness and access across institutions Understanding of the support disabled students may need at all stages of the student lifecycle, from applying to university to seeking graduate employment
  • Insights on the next steps for the Disabled Students Allowance, and how to ensure all entitled students can access it
  • Networking opportunities with those working in teaching, experience, and outcomes, as well as equity, diversity, and inclusion leads across the sector

Agenda

8:45 am
Registration, Refreshments, and Networking
9:30 am
Chair's Welcome Address
Professor Katherine Linehan
Professor Katherine Linehan
Pro-Vice Chancellor for Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion
University of Nottingham
Confirmed
9:40 am
The Disabled Students Commission: Tips for Achieving Cross-Institution Inclusivity and Improving Access
  • Discuss the key areas where the higher education sector can enhance support in a meaningful way to impact access and outcomes for disabled students
  • Evaluate the need to consider support for disabled students through an intersectional lens, as Covid-19 has highlighted the multiple barriers some students with caring responsibilities, mental health difficulties, or from lower socio-economic backgrounds may face
  • What procedures should universities be putting in place post-Covid-19 to ensure high quality support is available for disabled students, and all teaching and learning spaces are accessible?

This session will include time for questions.

Professor Geoff Layer
Professor Geoff Layer
Chair
Disabled Students' Commission
Confirmed
10:10 am
Embedding the Student Voice and Lived Experience into Enhanced Support Provision

This session will explore the importance of designing student services taking into account the lived experience of disabled students, and practical tips on how to achieve this

  • How to ensure the voice of those with lived experience is heard by service designers across all student facing services
  • Best practice for co-designing initiatives without increasing the burden on disabled students
  • Evaluating the importance of intersectionality and how to design services and projects considering those facing multiple barriers to access

This session will include time for questions.

Piers Wilkinson
Piers Wilkinson
Higher Education Policy and Partnerships Lead
Diversity and Ability
Confirmed
10:40 am
Networking and Refreshments Break
11:00 am
Case Study: Support Through *AccessAbility Retention and Transition (STAART)

The University of Greenwich has been providing support for disabled students through the STAART programme since 2007. The programme is peer led, combining inreach and outreach to current and prospective students under one support mechanism, and recently won the Levelling-Up Universities Award for Student Good Health and Wellbeing.

  • Evaluate how the STAART programme has been shaped since its conception to reflect the concerns of disabled students
  • Explore the evidence on the impact of the ongoing peer-led support throughout the student lifecycle
  • Analyse how STAART Student Ambassadors gain paid work opportunities and employment related CPD to enhance graduate prospects
  • Discuss how to involve disabled students in initiatives

This session will include time for questions.

Dr Melanie Thorley
Dr Melanie Thorley
STAART Lead
University of Greenwich
Confirmed
Natalie Turner
Natalie Turner
Student Ambassador Manager
University of Greenwich
Confirmed
11:30 am
Panel Discussion: Using the Latest Assistive Tech Innovations and Ideas to Support Teaching and Learning, and Enhance the Student Experience
  • How to ensure that disabled students institution-wide have access to information about, and can obtain the latest accessible and assistive technology?
  • What are the latest assistive tech innovations available to support teaching and learning?
  • How can assistive tech be used to enhance the student experience at all stages of the student lifecycle?

Participate in the discussion and ask our expert panellists all your questions on assistive tech.

Shamima Akhtar
Shamima Akhtar
Policy Project Coordinator (Assistive and Accessible Technology)
Policy Connect
Confirmed
Jade Matos Carew
Jade Matos Carew
Accessibility and Usability Evaluation Team Lead
The Open University
Confirmed
Dr Paul Whittington
Dr Paul Whittington
Lecturer in Assistive Technology
Bournemouth University
Confirmed
12:10 pm
OfS Update: Evaluating the Progress Made on Access and Participation Indicators for Disabled Students
  • Understand what the data says on sector wide progress on the OfS’s KPMs, and the continued need for action based on these targets
  • Exploring the evidence on the importance of inclusive practice to improve outcomes for disabled students
  • Discussing the key areas for progress and future work, such as supporting disabled students entering employment and DSA applications
  • Understand the action the OfS is taking around Access and Participation Plan reforms, and the impact of these changes on our knowledge of how to improve the experience and outcomes for disabled students

This session will include time for questions.

Amy Norton
Amy Norton
Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
Office for Students (OfS)
Confirmed
12:40 pm
Networking Lunch
1:30 pm
DfE Update: The Disabled Students’ Allowance

The DSA provides vital support to students with disabilities and is key to widening participation in higher education. In this session we will look at the latest changes to DSA and the impact of Covid-19.

  • Set out the latest news on DSA and policy priorities
  • Evaluate how Covid-19 has impacted the DSA
  • Consider future changes and priorities for the DSA

This session will include time for questions.

Katherine Bayliss
Katherine Bayliss
Team Leader, Disabled Students' Allowance Policy Team
DfE
Confirmed
2:00 pm
Workshop: Supporting Disabled Students and Graduates Entering Employment

Disabled graduates at all qualification levels are less likely to be found in employment than their non-disabled peers. It is vital that careers advice is tailored to disabled students so they can access the personalised support necessary when seeking employment.

  • What personalised support should all HE careers services be providing for disabled students?
  • What resources are available for disabled students seeking graduate employment, and who should be aware of them?
  • Understanding and evaluating the impact of personalised careers support for disabled students throughout the student lifecycle

This session will be interactive and include time for discussion.

Viki Chinn
Viki Chinn
Careers Consultant for Disabled Students
LSE Careers, London School of Economics
Confirmed
2:30 pm
Networking and Refreshments Break
2:50 pm
Workshop: Assessing Your Organisation’s Digital Accessibility Maturity

As hybrid teaching and learning becomes the norm post-Covid-19 it is vital to ensure your digital services meet the public sector digital accessibility requirements and provide the best experience for students and staff alike.

  • Making sure your institution has an appropriate strategy and team structure in place to support digital accessibility
  • Understanding how to evaluate progress and identify compliance issues
  • Evaluating the student experience of your digital services and what support needs to be available to staff
  • Reflecting on your institution’s digital accessibility maturity and discussing action to improve
  • University of Derby case study: how the university set a benchmark and ambition for digital accessibility, and instigated a strategic plan to improve

This session will be interactive and include time for discussion.

Amy Low
Amy Low
Service Delivery Director
AbilityNet
Confirmed
Claire Gardener
Claire Gardener
Senior Learning Technologist
University of Derby
Confirmed
3:30 pm
Chair's Close to the Forum
Professor Katherine Linehan
Professor Katherine Linehan
Pro-Vice Chancellor for Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion
University of Nottingham
Confirmed

Audience

This Forum is specifically designed for the Higher Education sector. Those in attendance will include:

  • Heads of Disability Services
  • Heads of Student Services
  • Heads of Disability Resource Centres
  • Heads of Student Wellbeing
  • Directors of Student Experience
  • Disability Advisors
  • Student Engagement Managers
  • Senior Lecturers
  • EDI Managers
  • Support Managers

Pricing

For group discounts and enquiries about your registration please contact us on 020 3770 6580 or [email protected]

Venue

London