Teaching a diverse student body – a proposed tool for lecturers to self-evaluate their approach to inclusive teaching

Sheila Cunningham

Abstract


Higher education moved from elite to a mass system in England over the last two decades under New Labour’s policy of developing social mobility and knowledge economy. As participation in HE almost reached the target 50% it resulted in greater diversity and associated demands on institutions of the needs of diverse students. The increasing need for university lecturers to be cognisant of and responsive to such diversity is increasingly important. Research indicates that lecturers who practice inclusively benefit all students’ not just specific groups yet there remains variable practice in some areas a dissonance between espoused versus actual practice for inclusive teaching. This article describes the background and stimulus for development of a Self Reflective Tool which emerged from part of a doctoral project examining lecturers’ perceptions of WP and diversity and their pedagogical approaches. The proposed tool is mapped with the UK Professional Standards for teaching and supporting learning dimensions and encourages consideration of the context, preparation, evaluation, strategies for promoting learning and affective and sensory elements of learning.

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