Creating accessible information about courses or programmes of study for disabled students.

2. Reflecting on Content

It is likely that the task of writing or reviewing information for prospective students will be carried out after the content and methods of delivering the course or programme of study have been determined. But for the prospective student, this order is reversed. The information you make available is likely to influence their expectations and beliefs about the course or programme of study. All prospective students want to know whether they could or would want to undertake the course or programme of study.

“Details of the entry requirements, degree structure, curriculum content, learning environment, learning and teaching approach, module content, learning outcomes, assessment and progression, workload and time commitment, and career opportunities are disseminated to potential students via text based literature and an electronic version on the web site, as well as open day presentations, and personal interaction with staff.”

The institution, for its part, will want to give prospective students accurate information about the demands of the course, in terms which are realistic, but also encouraging and welcoming. Getting your course or programme of study information right has a double value: it can minimise disappointment arising from inappropriate expectations, and it can help to avoid complaints of discrimination under the DDA (1995) Part IV, as amended in 2006.

After reading the course description which implies that there is a need for a high degree of physical stamina, a disabled potential student elects to choose a different course. He learns later that the course makes no particular physical demands, and he complains.

A dyslexic student, on course, learns that she is being consistently marked down for spelling and grammar, but nothing in the course description had suggested that this would be the case. She makes a complaint.

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