How considering inclusive learning can help change your mind-set.
Dr Jhoram Funtanares Nufable, Associate Professor, Newcastle University Medicine Malaysia (NUMed) shares his thoughts on the Inclusive Learning session delivered at this year’s Learning and Teaching Conference. This session was led by Dr Ruth Graham, Dean of Undergraduate Studies, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and Sandy Alden, Team Leader, Disability and Specialist Learning, Student Wellbeing Service.
Inclusive learning interests me a lot to a personal level as I have a child who struggles with learning and has some developmental delay. As parents, we surely want the best for our children. We would support them as much as we can and would really appreciate if teachers would be more sensitive to their needs.
From this topic, a lot of ideas came into my mind on how I would re-design my succeeding instructions; particularly taking into account the diversity of my students. I find the ‘Inclusive Practice Check list’ to be most helpful as it straightforwardly identifies features of inclusive learning and I believe that by being mindful of the domains of inclusive learning, my teaching practice and how my students learn will further improve.
The topic on ‘Inclusive learning’ made me think if I am truly communicating my teaching material to ‘all’ my students or am I disadvantaging some of them because I am assuming that everyone has the capacity as they were able to be enter NUMed after a rigorous admission screening anyway. Now, I realise that this kind of mind-set does not help at all and serves as the initial barrier to inclusive learning. Lastly, I also realised that I should constantly be reminding myself that there might be one student that could have learnt better from me if only I had been extra sensitive to his or her needs.
If you are interested in finding out more about the inclusive learning session, or want to let us know your ideas, get in touch with LTDS@ncl.ac.uk or leave a comment below.