The resource was developed after research by the University found that many disabled postgraduate research students faced barriers which hindered progress and dampened confidence.
The research also showed that supervisors and institutional staff could readily help remove or lessen the barriers, by putting more thought into tailoring the research environment and their working practices to meet the requirements of these students.
These findings led to the development of a world-first web-based resource specifically aimed at those who work with disabled postgraduate research students. It will be launched on September 8 at the British Academy in London and has the potential to be used by higher education institutions around the world.
Newcastle University led the study and the creation of the website as part of the three-year Premia project, which received 150,000 in funding from the Higher Education Funding Council for England and Wales.
The wide array of materials on the website are aimed at making research education more accessible from the time students apply for a course until they finish their studies and start their careers.
Resources include over 60 themed units including creating accessible information about research study, working with research students with reading difficulties, making adjustments to supervisory practice, to inclusive vivas and making the transition to employment.
The library has self-audit tools to help staff prepare for disabled research students before they start their postgraduate degrees, a plain English glossary of key research terms and testimonies from students to give an insight into the types of issues they face.
About 5 per cent of the postgraduate research population is disabled including students wi
Contact: Claire Jordan
University of Newcastle upon Tyne