Different approaches may be required to address the particular issues each student brings to your class room but there are some strategies that are useful in all scenarios. These include:
• allowing students to participate in self-reflective exercises so they may become aware their learning preferences, personality types, preferred team roles etc;
• development of online quizzes that reinforce important points and concepts in topics that are available for students to complete in their own time and at their own pace;
• including a range of different learning, teaching and assessment approaches and providing students with options to choose which they feel suit them best;
• providing opportunities for students to reflect on their own experiences and consider how these experiences influence the way they understand; and
• scaffolding academic skills, learning processes and assessments (based on Kift 2009).
The Inclusive teaching for diverse learners website at Monash University provides information regarding the characteristics of diverse learners; strategies that may be used to make your teaching more inclusive; ideas on assessment and the use of technologies that may be useful. The site includes a ‘Checklist for Inclusive Teaching' which may be used to determine whether your classrooms meet the needs of most students. Other guides and checklists to inclusive teaching and developing an Inclusive Curriculum are also available:
- The University of Sydney's Teaching to Diversity Strategies provides a list of recommendations that discuss supporting diversity
- the University of Tasmania provides an Inclusive Teaxching Checklist that offers a different set of criteria from those listed on the "Checklist for Inclusive Teaching" offered by Monash University
There is a range of other resources which have been developed both nationally and internationally. The University of Sydney's Inclusive Teaching website also provides a list of useful references and resources and links to a number of them.. The website also provides a link to an online module, Learning to teach inclusively (LTI) which was developed by a project team led by Professor Chris Hockings from the University of Wolverhampton. The online module includes three separate interactive units which cover:
• Inclusive curriculum and assessment;
• Inclusive pedagogy; and,
• Managing and researching the inclusive institution.
Other holistic approaches to teaching which are inclusive include:
• Differentiated Instruction - which is described as teaching that is responsive to the needs of all students, and
• Universal Design for Learning (UDL) which is "a set of principles for curriculum development that give all individuals equal opportunities to learn" (National Center on Universal Design for Learning, 2011). Although UDL is often associated with students with disabilities it has applications that are useful for all learners.