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Enabled or Pathologised – The HE experiences of students with Learning Differences

De Montfort University, Leicster
14 May 2008 14:00-16:30

Dr David Pollak, De Montfort University
Dr Nicola Martin, Sheffield Hallam University
Edward Griffin, Research Assistant, De Montfort University
The seminar will focus on Dr David Pollak’s NTF Project BRAIN HE (Best Resources for Achievement and Intervention re Neurodiversity in Higher Education). This research interrogates the experiences of students with a range of specific learning differences. One of the specific learning differences researched is Asperger’s Syndrome and the seminar will include a contribution from Dr Nicola Martin on her PhD thesis ‘Towards a better understanding of effective strategies to support university students with Asperger’s Syndrome’. In her study, staff from 17 universities, augmented by views of students and mothers, provide insights into effective and ineffective support strategies for students with AS.  
Both pieces of research are based on a social model of disability which sees how specific learning differences are constructed as disabilities by the practices of HEIs. They also draw on positive psychology, a perspective which looks at strengths rather than focussing of deficits or defects. The use of nvivo7 for the analysis of qualitative data in the BrainHE project will be explained and evaluated. Findings indicate the commonalities in experiences of students with a range of specific learning differences where students’ disabilities are consistently seen through a ‘medical model lens’.
There are 40 free places available for this seminar, and these will be allocated on a strictly first-come-first served basis.  You should await confirmation of a place before attending.
To reserve your place, please email by
12.00pm on Wednesday 7 May 2008.
Please indicate if you have any accessibility or dietary requirements at the time of booking.
Presentation material will be made available to delegates in advance of the seminar

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