Institute for Academic Development
Institute for Academic Development

Accessible and Inclusive Learning

Guidance to support the University's Accessible and Inclusive Learning policy.

The University has an updated accessible and inclusive learning policy:

University of Edinburgh Accessible and Inclusive Learning Policy (PDF)

This policy builds on the principle of Universal Design. Universal design is ‘design that’s usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design’ (attributed to Ron Mace). Universal design for learning comes from the systematic consideration of the effects of teaching, learning and assessment practice and policy at the each of the planning, implementation and evaluation stages to ensure that teaching and learning is accessible to all students.

As well as following the principles of inclusive and universal design, there are some specific adjustments that should be on offer as standard practice because they will help so many students. These are set out below.

IAD also has further guidance on inclusive course design, see link below.

Course outline and reading lists

1. Course outlines and lists of core readings shall be available at least 4 weeks before the course starts.

Prioritised reading lists

2. Reading lists to indicate priority or relevance.

Providing lecture outlines before class

3. Lecture outlines or PowerPoint presentation slides for lectures and seminars to be made available at least 24 hours in advance of the class.

Providing keywords and formulae

4. Key words and formulae to be provided to students at least 24 hours before the class.

Email notification of cancellation / changes

5. Students shall be notified by email of changes or announcements such as changes to courses, room changes or cancellations.

Lecture recording for personal use

6. Students shall be permitted to audio record lectures, tutorials and supervision sessions using their own equipment for their own personal learning.

Using microphones in lectures

7. All teaching staff shall ensure that microphones are worn and used in all lectures, where available, regardless of the perceived need to wear them.

Inclusive course design

Resources on accessibility and inclusiveness in designing your curriculum.

Accessible resources

Examples of ways to make digital materials accessible, plus a link to further more-detailed guidance.

Benefits to teaching staff

Why we are implementing this policy.

About the development of this policy

A short overview of how this policy was developed.