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New ideas welcomed for inclusive learning

Digital technologies charity Jisc launches competition for students/staff to design new digital solutions to boost accessibility

Posted by Hannah Oakman | September 14, 2015 | Technology

Called accessible by design, the competition will invite ideas for how technology could support the access and inclusion of the UK’s learners, staff and researchers in post-16 education, with the best ones being offered the opportunity of funding to get their ideas off the ground.

Three ideas will be selected to receive £5,000 in funding plus expert support from Jisc to take them through the discovery phase and help develop tangible solutions.

Paul Bailey, senior co-design manager, Jisc, said: “Technology is a major enabler in supporting accessibility to learning and teaching resources, but more must be done to ensure no learner is left behind.

“Those students and staff who are having to overcome accessibility issues everyday are ideally placed to offer ideas on how their experiences can be improved through technology. With our competition we want to invite their ideas and involve them in the development of new tools and apps that support inclusive learning. Specifically we’re looking for digital solutions that could make life easier not only for the individual and their institution, but can be rolled out so that others may benefit too.”

Accessible by design follows on from Jisc’s successful Summer of Student Innovation competition, now in its third year, which invites student teams to submit ideas for products that could enhance the learning experience.

Any student or member or staff that works in the area of accessibility and inclusion in further education (FE), higher education (HE) or skills is eligible to enter, either individually or as a team.

Ideas can either be a completely new concept or invention, or based on something already in existence by suggesting ways in which it can be improved. The ideas could provide solutions for individuals or a whole organisation, however, all submissions must be scalable and have the potential to benefit more than one institution in order to be considered.

Entries must be made via Jisc’s elevator website by 26 October and need to include a short video and summary of the idea. The general public will then be able to vote until 2 November with the final projects being taken forward announced in late November.

You can follow #accessdesign on Twitter for the latest news.


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