Presentation: Embedding Mental Health and Wellbeing in the Curriculum

open & Inclusive Special Interest Group
Monday 9th November, 14:00 – 16:00
ONLINE: Adobe Connect
Adobe Connect Link for OU Staff
Link for external participants

openTEL and SeGA are pleased to announce that the next Open & Inclusive Special Interest Group will include presentations from Helena Gillespie and Emma Sutton from UEA. Join us online!

Embedding Mental Health and Wellbeing in the Curriculum

Abstract:

The multi-disciplinary team at UEA have been working on embedding mental health in the curriculum over the last 12 months, as part of a collaborative project with Advance HE. Despite (and perhaps even because of) the upheaval in Higher Education caused by Covid19, the project has made good progress in some areas. In this presentation, we will report on progress so far, encompassing, university systems, assessment and assessment literacy, student skills and identity and the role of communications in promotion good mental health. We’ll discuss how we have collaborated across teams at UEA and how we intend to approach the evaluation of the project’s long term outcomes.

Bio:

Helena Gillespie is Professor of Learning and Teaching in Higher Education and Academic Director of Inclusive Education at UEA in Norwich. With a background in school teaching she has an interest in equality and diversity and is academic lead for the university’s Access and Participation Plan. Helena is about to begin work on a 3 year European University project, with a focus on how universities can be agents for social transformation.

Emma Sutton is Professor of Health Professions Education and Academic Director of Taught Programmes at UEA. She began her career as a registered mental health nurse working in specialist areas of crisis intervention and working with those who engage in self injury. Despite moving into an academic role more than twenty years ago, she remains a registrant and strong advocate for individuals living with mental ill-health and those that are close to them. Emma has led the ‘Embedding Mental Health and Wellbeing in the Curriculum’ project as part of an institution wide strategy and is about to launch a whole-scale curriculum review across the UEA.

Guidance: Designing Learning for Autistic and Neurodiverse Students

Designing learning for autistic and neurodiverse students

Collaboratively created guidance from the OpenTEL Open & Inclusive SIG, July 2020

Autism and neurodiversity

Autism and neurodiversity are labels used to describe people who have certain differences in the way in which they think and in the way they interact with society. Typically, people on the autism spectrum may be less aware of, bound by, aligned to or responsive to societal expectations or constraints. This different way of thinking can be an enormous strength, and some great thinkers and innovators are autistic. However, this can lead to challenges for autistic people, especially in settings like the workplace and education, where specific things are expected that might not align with an autistic person’s skills or abilities.

This guide aims to help raise awareness of some of the differences autistic people may experience, and to help educators design learning, activities, tutorials and assessment that can help autistic students demonstrate their potential on a more level playing field.  It was collaboratively created with autistic people (OU staff and students.)

Terminology

Language and terminology used to describe autism is highly debated, so we start with a note on the definitions and terminology chosen for this guidance.  Continue reading