Negotiating individual accommodation in higher education
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionScandinavian Journal of Disability Research. 2014, 16 (4), 316-332. 10.1080/15017419.2012.761156
This article discusses ways of understanding the processes involved when disabled students negotiate accessibility in higher education. Despite legislation for universal design and political aims to increase the number of disabled students, individuals themselves have to take initiatives to obtain needed reasonable adjustments. Findings are drawn from a study of everyday lives of disabled students. Research methods employed were: time geographic diaries, in-depth interviews and focus groups. Findings include issues of disclosure and stigma management, supports provided with a twist of ambiguity, and experiences of combatting for individual accommodation. The process of negotiation is discussed in terms of traditions in higher education, the burden individual accommodation in practice place upon disabled students, and the need for changes based on universal design.