A member of the University of the Third Age mentoring a University of Plymouth student.

Key issues in inclusivity

As part of a PedRIO funded project, in 2014 we interviewed 29 staff and students from University of Plymouth to find out their perspective about how to develop more inclusive teaching and learning practices. Here are some of the things they said:

  • Students want to be respected for their uniqueness but treated equally. Teaching in an inclusive way means finding a balance between supporting those with additional needs while not singling out those who are different.
  • The issue is not just with those who have additional needs but certain university practices excluding students from achieving their full potential. Being inclusive means creating a level playing field rather than measures focusing on 'problem' students.
  • Inclusivity is a journey. It is not about being all things to all people all of the time but about continually reflecting on teaching practice and asking, how can I do better?
  • Teaching inclusively can be seen as just good teaching. It is about considering the needs of your audience, communicating knowledge clearly, giving students a voice to discuss ideas and treating all students and colleagues with respect.
  • This process of reflection is not always easy but can be intellectually and personally rewarding.

The following videos summarise some of these discussions. Email ed@plymouth.ac.uk for further information about the research project,