People with Intellectual Disability Experiencing University Life

Theoretical Underpinnings, Evidence and Lived Experience


This book will introduce the reader to international perspectives associated with post-secondary school education for students with intellectual disability attending university settings. Examples of students with intellectual disability gaining their right to full inclusion within university settings are outlined, as well as the barriers and facilitators of such innovation. The four parts of the text will act as a reader for all stakeholders of inclusion at the university level. The first part examines the philosophical, theoretical and rights-based framework of inclusion. The second part provides evidence and insight into eight programs from across the globe, where students with intellectual disability are included within university settings. The third part consists of six chapters associated with the lived experiences of stakeholders in the programs profiled in Part 2. These stories are represented through the voices of former students of inclusive tertiary education initiatives, parents of adult children with intellectual disability who have participated in tertiary education, and lecturers who have taught students with intellectual disability as members of their courses. In the fourth part, critical issues are examined, including the role of secondary school counsellors, sustaining post university outcomes, transition from university to employment, inclusive university teaching approaches, and decision-making approaches to successfully implement a tertiary education initiative. The text concludes with a synthesis of the book themes and proposes calls to action with specific tasks to move the rhetoric of human rights into reality for adults with intellectual disability through an inclusive tertiary education.

Contributors are: Kristín Björnsdóttir, Michelle L Bonati, Bruce Chapman, Amy L. Cook, Deborah Espiner, Friederike Gadow, Meg Grigal, Debra Hart, Laura Hayden, Anne Hughson, John Kubiak, Niamh Lally, Lorraine Lindsay, Jemima MacDonald, Kathleen J. Marshall, Kerri-ann Messenger, Lumene Montissol, Ray Murray, John O’Brien, Patricia O’Brien, Barrie O’Connor, Molly O’Keeffe, Clare Papay, Anthony J. Plotner , Parimala Raghavendra, Fiona Rillotta, Michael Shevlin , Roger Slee, Natasha A. Spassiani , Guðrún V. Stefánsdóttir, Josh Stenberg, Kimberley Teasley, Lorraine Towers, Margaret Turley, Bruce Uditsky, Chelsea VanHorn Stinnett, Stephanie Walker, Thea Werkoven, Felicia L. Wilczenski.

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Patricia O’Brien, Ph.D., University of Queensland, is Professor of Disability Studies and Director, Centre for Disability Studies (CDS) affiliated with The University of Sydney. At CDS Patricia promotes research that is inclusive of people with intellectual disabilities as co-researchers.

Michelle L Bonati, Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA, is an Assistant Professor in Teacher Education at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Plattsburgh and an Honorary Associate in Special and Inclusive Education in the Sydney School of Education and Social Work at the University of Sydney. She is also an Associate of the Disability Research and Policy Centre in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Sydney.

Friederike Gadow is the Co-Leader of Education & Training and a Research Fellow at the Centre for Disability Studies, Affiliate of the Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney. Friederike is working on a PhD thesis which examines social support for people with intellectual disability who live in a home of their choice.

Roger Slee holds the Crossing the Horizon Chair in Education at the University of South Australia. He is also a Visiting Professor at the Centre for Disability Studies in the School of Sociology and Social Policy at The University of Leeds. He is the Founding Editor of The International Journal of Inclusive Education (Taylor & Francis) and The Journal of Disability Studies in Education (Brill). He formerly held the Chair of Inclusive Education at The Institute of Education – UCL and was Deputy Director-General of the Queensland Ministry of Education.
Lani Florian
List of Figures and Tables
Notes on Contributors
Purpose of the Book
Patricia O’Brien, Michelle L. Bonati, Friederike Gadow and Roger Slee

Part 1: Philosophical, Theoretical and Rights Based Framework of Inclusion

1. From Institutionalisation to Inclusion
Patricia O’Brien and Michelle L. Bonati
2. Widening Higher Education Opportunities for Students with Intellectual Disabilities: An Overview of Program Issues and Policy Implications
Barrie O’Connor, Deborah Espiner and Molly O’Keeffe
3. Setting the Scene for People with Disability to Experience University Life
Roger Slee

Part 2: Evidence-Based Outcomes Arising from Inclusive University Programs across International Boundaries

4. 30 Years of Inclusive Post-Secondary Education: Scope, Challenges and Outcomes
E. Anne Hughson and Bruce Uditsky
5. Inclusive Higher Education for People with Intellectual Disability in the United States: An Overview of Policy, Practice, and Outcomes
Meg Grigal, Debra Hart and Clare Papay
6. Developing an Inclusive Model of Postsecondary Education for Students with Intellectual Disability: Challenges and Outcomes
Anthony J. Plotner, Kathleen J. Marshall, Chelsea Vanhorn Stinnett and Kimberly Teasley
7. Meaningful Participation and Shared Ownership in an Inclusive University Program in Iceland
Guðrún V. Stefánsdóttir and Kristín Björnsdóttir
8. Scope, Challenges and Outcomes of an Inclusive Tertiary University Initiative in Australia
Friederike Gadow and Jemima MacDonald
9. Developing Post-Secondary Education Programmes for People with Intellectual Disablities at Trinity College, the University of Dublin, Ireland
John Kubiak, Natasha Spassiani, Michael Shevlin and Molly O’Keeffe
10. Journey “up the Hill” through Inclusive Higher Education for People with Intellectual Disability at a South Australian University: Scope, Challenges and Outcomes to Date and into the Future
Fiona Rillotta, Lorraine Lindsay and Parimala Raghavendra

Part 3: The Lived Experience of Being and Becoming a University Student

11. Journey "Up the Hill" to My Hopes and Dreams
Kerri-ann Messenger, Lorraine Lindsay and Fiona Rillotta
12. My Life as a University Student
Stephanie Walker and Jemima MacDonald
13. Expanding Pathways to University: Student Experience of Inclusive Programming
Lumene Montissol and Amy L. Cook
14. My Name Is Margaret and This Is My Story
Margaret Turley
15. A Conversation with Families of Young People with Intellectual Disability for Whom the Dream of Attending University Came True
Patricia O’Brien and Ray Murray
16. Lecturers’ Perspectives on Being Involved in Teaching Students with Intellectual Disability Participating in University Courses
Michelle L. Bonati, Bruce Chapman, Josh Stenberg, Lorraine Towers and Thea Werkhoven

Part 4: Critical Issues Associated with the Further Development of Post Secondary Education for Students with Intellectual Disability

17. What Comes Next? Sustaining Outcomes Post-University
Niamh Lally, Patricia O’Brien and Robert Gilligan
18. Counsellor Roles in Postsecondary Transition from School to University
Amy L. Cook, Laura A. Hayden and Felicia L. Wilczenski
19. Inclusive Tertiary Education through Universal Design for Learning and Service-Learning
Michelle L. Bonati
20. Transition from University to Employment
Vivienne Riches, Friederike Gadow and Jemima MacDonald
21. Exploring the Growing Edges of Inclusion
John O’Brien
22. Moving from Rhetoric to Reality: Inclusive Tertiary Education for Adults with Intellectual Disability
Patricia O’Brien, Michelle L. Bonati, Friederike Gadow and Roger Slee

Students and Educational Researchers interested in international perspectives associated with post-secondary school education for students with intellectual disability attending university settings.
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