Each college and department will designate particular members of staff to coordinate and lead on planning and support for disabled students. These individuals will be:
Able to identify and seek to overcome barriers disabled students face in relation to their studies at Oxford and take steps to remove them where possible.
Mindful of the need for sensitive and confidential communications.
In most cases, responsibilities will be split between a senior member of staff who is able to take strategic oversight of provision, the Disability Lead, and another member of staff who will be the principal point of contact for arranging and implementing individual adjustments, the Disability Coordinator.
It is important that staff and students within their college or department can identify the Disability Lead and Disability Coordinator, and understand the nature of their responsibilities. This information should be advertised prominently on the college or department website, along with the relevant contact details, and be updated regularly. Other steps should be taken to highlight the support available via open days and induction events. Each college has student Common Room Disabilities Officers, and positive relationships should be developed with these representatives to promote the work of the Disability Coordinator to students.
A senior member of staff who is a member of the appropriate Governing Body or senior management body, usually the Senior Tutor in a college or Director of Graduate Studies in a department.
the role is
Raise awareness of the need for anticipatory adjustments and take a role in incorporating proposals into planning cycles and in the implementation of adjustments once approved.
Foster inclusive practice in teaching and learning activities (including in curriculum planning), as well as in broader aspects of student life.
Promote excellence in accessibility and inclusivity as a strategic priority and the active adoption of the guiding principles set out in the Common Framework.
Oversee the provision of reasonable adjustments for disabled students, including the work of the Disability Co-ordinator.
Resolve complex individual cases in partnership with other bodies of the collegiate University.
Disseminate good practice and raise awareness in student common rooms of need to adopt inclusive practice in events and activities.
Instigate regular reviews of the institution’s provision for disabled students and report the results of these to the senior management body.
A member of staff with a good knowledge of the institution’s legal responsibilities and relevant policies and procedures, who is in a position to ensure that adjustments necessary to meet the day-to-day needs of students are put in place.
Nature of the role is day-to-day support
Establish open communication with all disabled students who have disclosed their condition and act as a first point of contact for undergraduates with disabilities (in the case of College Disability Coordinators) and for graduates (in the case of Department Disability Coordinators) within the collegiate University.
Provide information and support to students, administrative and academic staff on student-related disability issues.
Coordinate the implementation of the Student Support Plan (SSP) within the college or department and ensure that it reflects the practical circumstances of the student in collaboration with them and the Disability Advisory Service.
Maintain appropriate records. Identify where liaison with other units is needed in order to put in place support for students, and coordinate collaboration (College Disability Coordinators in the case of undergraduates, and Department/Faculty Disability Coordinators in the case of graduates).
Inform the Disability Lead of complex issues or problems as they arise.
Share the contents of the SSP where appropriate within the college (for college disability coordinators) or department/faculty (for departmental Disability Coordinators).
(College Disability Coordinators only) Process applications to the Proctors and Education Committee for examination adjustments, or other relevant matters, for both undergraduate and post-graduate taught students.
(Departmental Disability Coordinators only) Arrange and monitor departmental adjustments for examination and assessment processes for research students, and for any departmental undergraduate exams. Where a PEEP (Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan) may be required, notify the relevant building/facilities manager(s) and/or local safety officer; help engage the student in the process and identify other key people with whom the PEEP might need to be shared.
College Disability Coordinators are responsible for providing oversight of provision for undergraduate students, and departmental Disability Coordinators are responsible for postgraduate students.
The Disability Coordinator provides a single point of contact with whom the student can report any substantial changes in circumstances or problems with provision.
The Disability Coordinator should maintain oversight of the academic progress and student experience of each student with disabilities through their student career. They should check existing academic monitoring records (such as OxCORT reports and collection marks in the case of undergraduates and GSR records in the case of postgraduates) to review whether progress is as expected and encourage academic and welfare teams (with the students consent) to advise of any disability-related issues which might require further reasonable adjustments. The frequency of monitoring should be proportionate to the complexity of the student’s needs, but would commonly take place termly or annually.
Regular contact should also be maintained with the Disability Advisory Service to ensure effective information-sharing.