Attitudes towards IDM at the programme leader level – results of an international survey

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


education institutions across Europe. While university leadership increasingly recognises the importance of IDM-related policies, and offices tasked with implementing those policies have been widely installed (also as a corollary of legal requirements), the level of the programme leader has been largely overlooked in (institutional) research efforts. However, it is this group of academic managers that play a pivotal role in the implementation of IDM policies as they are able to exert influence on many levels: Programme leaders are lecturers themselves, but also act as superiors to other teachers and administrative staff in their programme. They interact directly with students and are aware of students‘ problems navigating the curriculum. As the main decision-makers in their programmes they are responsible for the design and adaptation of curricula. Additionally, they dispose of formal and/or informal authority and are able to seek out and secure support for the implementation of diversity-sensitive practices at a faculty or institutional level. This contribution will present the first results of an international online survey among 370 programme leaders at higher education institutions in the UK, Austria, Germany and Finland. The survey will analyse perceptions and attitudes towards IDM and will also serve as a preliminary needs assessment for that group. It is carried out within the framework of an EU-project on promoting more inclusive practices amongst programme leaders. While the analysis focuses not only on disabilities but other aspects of diversity as well, the following questions will be addressed: • How do PLs perceive requirements for inclusion and the demand for diversity management? (as a chore, a helpful tool,...): Attitudes Towards IDM • What measures in place at their institutions are they familiar with at all? What is considered helpful? Awareness of IDM • What challenges and difficulties do they and/or their staff encounter in the application of inclusive teaching and learning practices and in dealing with a diverse, heterogeneous student body in general? Further, the study asks for PLs‘ needs regarding IDM: in what areas (for example curriculum design, the development of inclusive teaching methods or making their programmes more accessible for non-traditional students) do they require further support and/or instruction? While national differences will be addressed, the results will be analysed across disciplines, also taking into account generational effects (testing, for example, the hypothesis that younger PLs will be more open to new, inclusive teaching and assessments practices). Ultimately, the positions on and perceptions of IDM will be reflected against PLs‘ personal diverse backgrounds.
Period27 Jun 2018
Event titleThe National Association for Disability Practitioner’s (NADP) International Conference
Event typeConference
LocationLondon, United KingdomShow on map