Learning and Teaching Conference January 2024

Thank you to all our keynote speakers, delegates, workshop hosts, staff and students who attended the annual Learning and Teaching conference at our City Campus exploring the idea of ‘The Inclusive College’. The conference explored the many innovative and inspiring ways staff can support the student journey.

The conference included an eclectic mix of elective sessions covering everything from Trans-inclusion and engaging introverted learners to Dyslexia and ADHD In the Classroom and examining Neurodiversity Awareness. The conference also looked at the role data has to play in improving ED&I outcomes and reviewed emerging solutions for deaf and hard-of-hearing students in further and higher education.

These elective sessions were conducted by both City of Glasgow College staff on the day as well as representatives from City SA, Amazon Web Services, the ADHD Coalition, College Development Network, Dyslexia Scotland, and Sight & Sound Technology who showcased how their experiences of inclusivity could benefit our learning and teaching practices.

We were lucky to be joined in the morning by our first keynote speaker, Professor John H McKendrick. Appointed Commissioner for Fair Access to Higher Education by the Scottish Government, John is committed to addressing poverty in Scotland. As the co-director of the Scottish Poverty and Inequality Research Unit at Glasgow Caledonian University, he actively informs the work of practitioners and campaigners.

John gave the audience lots to think about, opening with some wise words:

“A sign of a good student, is a student who can you let you know what is wrong with your course…’

John was making an important point. Improving equality, diversity and inclusion involves listening to alternative viewpoints, examining historically held beliefs, being open to change and remembering our student population will have a key role to play in this process.

In the afternoon we were joined by our second keynote speaker, Dr Kevin L Merry. Head of Academic Development and Associate Professor of Learning, Teaching, and Assessment at De Montfort University, Kevin spearheads the adoption of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) at a global level. Renowned for his award-winning teaching methods and inclusive curriculum design, in his keynote address Kevin outlined the importance UDL in making education more inclusive and suggested practical ways in which it can be implemented.

We also welcomed contributions from Student President Leo Subido who outlined his own journey through education and the importance of inclusive practice in supporting students with diverse needs.

The event was closed by an uplifting showcase from our Drama, Acting and Performance students with a piece on the theme of inclusion that they had chosen, rehearsed, and performed called ‘You will be found’ from the musical Dear Evan Hansen. It was delivered to a warm reception and rapturous applause.

The event was only possible thanks to the generous support of several sponsors including PTFS Europe (Library Systems), First Psychology Scotland, Instructure (Learning Platforms), Sight and Sound Technology, Browns Books, REHIS and Powerhouse Fitness who exhibited at the conference.

Special thanks go to our headline sponsor, Sight and Sound Technology, who hosted a workshop looking into how their products can provide innovative solutions to Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion challenges.