RMIT Vietnam NewsRMIT Vietnam supports students with disabilities

RMIT Vietnam supports students with disabilities

Saturday, December 3, 2016 - 08:29

Students with learning differences and disabilities face unique challenges at university.

Recognising this, RMIT University Vietnam has put in place programs and services to help the students overcome those challenges and find success at University – and in life. 

Pham Minh Anh, a Bachelor of Design student, was assessed with hearing impairment by the University’s Equity & Disability Resource Centre (EDRC).

“After I was assessed with a hearing impairment, the [EDRC] Advisor helped me develop a plan that outlines ‘reasonable adjustments’ needed in the class environment,” Anh said.

Reasonable adjustments are changes in the teaching practice, curriculum and assessment that allow students to study safely and effectively.

“In classes the teachers support my learning in many ways such as providing transcripts to accompany video and audio materials, and giving me all of my reading materials in advance so I can plan properly for class,” Anh explained.  

“They also make sure to face me when they are speaking and give the whole class important instructions and information verbally and in writing. 

“We also have speech to text software called Dragon Naturally that we can use as well.

“These services have really helped me to become a more independent and confident student.”

Video: In addition to the EDRC, RMIT has recently launched RMIT Access to support students with disabilities.

Launched in December 2013, the Equity & Disability Resource Centre (EDRC) supports and promotes inclusive and accessible learning, teaching, and assessment.

Carol Witney, the coordinator of the EDRC, elaborated: “We provide access, opportunity and success in the educational experience for all RMIT Vietnam students regardless of age, ability, gender, socioeconomic status, geographical status, medical/mental health status and disability status.”

“The plans we provide to students are ‘bespoke’, not a ‘one size fits all’ approach.

“RMIT respects diversity and this is reflected in each student's Plan. They are also open to change, reflecting the diversity of program content.”

RMIT Vietnam has witnessed a growing number of students registering with the Equity & Disability Resource Centre since it was first established.

Over the past two and a half years more than 120 students with hearing, visual, and mobility impairments; neurological conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia, Tourette Syndrome, and Autism Spectrum Disorders; as well as medical mental health conditions, and temporary injuries resulting from road traffic accidents have registered with the EDRC.  

This year the University also launched RMIT Access, an institution-wide initiative to ensure learning materials are presented in formats that are accessible to all students. RMIT Access is currently converting the learning materials of more than 200 courses into accessible formats.

Story: Carol Witney