Summary of key points:
• Inclusive curriculum content reflects different social and cultural perspectives.
• An inclusive curriculum seeks to disturb our taken for granted ways of thinking and expose imbalances of power and partial understandings of the subject.
• Inclusive curricula focus on mastery of ‘threshold concepts' that all students need to develop for a deeper understanding of the subject.
• Inclusive curriculum designers work with students to align the curriculum to their diverse backgrounds and aspirations.
• Teachers and researchers believe objectivity, clarity and transparency are the elements of a fair assessment system.
• Students believe the key elements of a fair assessment system are a ‘level playing field', good feedback, balance and variety of assessment tasks, skilful and caring teachers.
• The essay is the dominant form of assessment in HE but some students are more prepared for this form of assessment than others.
• Students from lower socio economic backgrounds, those from some ethnic minorities, those who enter university with vocational qualifications, and those who have a disability are amongst the most disadvantaged by assessment practices in HE.
• Assessment in HE could be made fairer and more inclusive if we:
• Involve students in all aspects of assessment
• Make assessment relevant and sustainable
• Offer greater variety, choice and flexibility in assessment
• Align assessment to learning outcomes and to students' backgrounds and aspirations.
The following summary of key points is from the Learning to Teach Inclusively (LTI) online module, Unit 2: Inclusive Pedagogy.
Summary of key points:
• Inclusive learning and teaching in higher education refers to the ways in which pedagogy, curricula and assessment are designed and delivered to engage students in learning that is meaningful, relevant and accessible to all.
• Student diversity is multi-faceted and complex. The categories ‘traditional' and ‘non-traditional' are inadequate to describe the rich diversity of students in HE today.
• Students value teachers who recognise them as individuals and who take account of their different interests, needs and backgrounds in their teaching.
• Students are more likely to participate in class when teachers create a safe and inclusive learning environment in which the expression of different views, ideas and beliefs is encouraged and being different, uncertain or confused is seen positively as an opportunity for collaborative learning.
• Students are more likely to engage academically when the learning activities and subject content harness and engage their prior experience and knowledge and require the use of high level cognitive skills (e.g. analysing, conjecturing, questioning, evaluating, synthesising, critiquing).
• Inclusive teachers are mindful of the diversity within their student groups. They select or create resources that reflect that diversity. They encourage students to add to those diverse resources.
• Inclusive teachers intervene to coordinate and stimulate rich exchanges and interactions between diverse students.
• Inclusive teachers anticipate and act to diffuse tension and conflict. They handle sensitive or controversial topics without silencing minority opinion or privileging dominant voices.