Inclusivity and disability

It is essential that ALL SHU students experience a fair and inclusive assessment process.

The following sections provide guidance and support.

What is inclusivity?

The term inclusive practice recognises the diversity of students. It aims to enable all students to access course content, fully participate in learning activities and demonstrate their knowledge and strengths at assessment.

Sheffield Hallam University is committed to the promotion of equality of opportunity and to creating and sustaining an inclusive culture in which there is high quality, vibrant learning experience unhampered by artificial barriers.

For more information, visit the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Team homepage.

Support for international students
The International Experience Team work to provide ALL students with an international and intercultural experience on campus including on-campus schemes that international students can get involved with.

They also provide specialist services to ensure international students have the best possible experience while studying at Sheffield Hallam University.

The International Team provide advice and guidance on a range of issues affecting study and welfare. Their advisers can also provide guidance on course, assessment and financial issues, and can help you to work through any concerns you might have. Workshops run each semester to help you adjust to UK study methods and teaching styles.

The International Team works closely with Hallam Union and other groups to provide activities and social events throughout the year.

For further information, please see Frequently Asked Questions for international students or contact the International Experience Team.

Support for disabled students
The Disabled Student Support Team aims to ensure that the University is compliant with its legal responsibility not to discriminate against disabled students by failing to make reasonable adjustments. They achieve this primarily through the provision of learning contracts and the delivery of specialist services for disabled students. The team also plays a key role in raising awareness about the need to anticipate the needs of disabled students and promotes the development of Inclusive Practice.

What conditions are eligible for support?

We provide support to students with a wide range of conditions.  Many students are put off by the term ‘disability’ or do not think that it applies to them. All of the following conditions are eligible for support:

  • Specific learning difficulties (such as dyslexia or dyspraxia)
  • Mental health difficulties
  • Long-term medical conditions
  • Autism spectrum conditions
  • Physical disabilities
  • Deaf
  • Visual impairment

All students need to provide medical evidence of their condition to access support.

What sort of support is available for disabled students?

The support depends on you, your condition and your course, but here are a few examples:

  • Learning contracts – documents that set out the reasonable adjustments that the university can make for you, for example extensions, or extra time in exams
  • Support workers – a range of support workers might help you with organisation, study skills or accessing the campus
  • Equipment and software – digital recorders to record lectures, mind-mapping software to plan work.

How to register for support

For further information, please see Frequently Asked Questions for disabled students or attend one of our daily drop ins.

Mental health support
You may experience distress or problems with your mental health during your time at Sheffield Hallam University.

Disabled Student Support and Student Wellbeing can support you in different ways. Both services work closely together and students often use both, but not necessarily.

Our mental health advisors can:

  • Suggest practical coping strategies and advice to help you manage your mental health
  • Support you by discussing difficulties and ensure that faculty staff are made aware of these
  • Make referrals to other support services at SHU such as Disabled Student Support or Careers and Employment
  • Help you access your GP, mental health services and other local services
  • Help plan your return to SHU following time off due to mental health difficulties

If you have a long term mental health diagnosis and you are able to provide medical evidence for this, you may be eligible for a learning contract or Disabled Students’ Allowances.  A learning contract lists individual support recommendations based on your needs. You will need to attend a guidance appointment or Study Needs Assessment to discuss how your mental health difficulties affect your studying.

What are learning contracts?
A learning contract lists recommendations for ‘reasonable adjustments’ to the learning, teaching and assessment on your course to enable you to study to your potential.  The main purpose of your learning contract is to ensure that all relevant staff members in your faculty are aware of the recommendations made for you by Disabled Student Support, so they can put them into practice.  Learning Contracts are produced by the Disabled Student Support team at the University. Further further information see What is a learning contract and how do I get one?

The Equality Act 2010
Please refer to the Equality and Diversity webpages on The Equality Act 2010 which introduced nine ‘protected characteristics’ listed below:

  • age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership
  • pregnancy and maternity
  • race
  • religion and belief
  • sex
  • sexual orientation