Ableism or the systematic discrimination of people with disabilities is a form of oppression that is often given little attention. Ableism, like other forms of oppression, occurs at individual (i.e. individual prejudices and biases), cultural (societal view that people with disabilities are scary, broken, pitiful, dumb, etc.) and institutional (i.e. employment, education, and housing discrimination) levels. We selected the following video clip to introduce the topic of ableism and encourage discussion about the number of issues raised. The video clip highlights how commonly used negative labels continue to be incredibly damaging and oppressive to people with disabilities. We invite you to help deconstruct and challenge these labels through ongoing learning and dialogue.
Questions to consider:
- What is your reaction to the video clip? What stood out for you?
- What stereotypes, prejudices and biases do individuals have towards people with disabilities?
- In what ways are people with disabilities discriminated against in employment? Education? Housing?
- Were you aware of the statics shared (e.g. High School graduation rates for students with disabilities is 57%, 72% of people with disabilities are unemployed, those that are employed earn an income that is half the national average)? Do the statistics surprise you?
- What ableist viewpoints and practices at various levels (individual, institutional, and cultural) contribute to such problematic statistics?
- What social historical factors play into the construction of disabilities?
- What are the primary principles of Universal Design and how can these be applied to various educational contexts?
- How have people with disabilities been marginalized from mainstream society during historical and contemporary times?
- What feelings do you experience when you see a person with a visible disability (e.g. wheelchair user, person who is blind)?
- How do you think your reactions to people with disabilities affect people with disabilities?
- What are the similarities and differences between mobility impairments, hearing impairments, and cognitive disabilities?
- What have you learned from reading the personal narrative about people with differing disabilities?
- What are the individual, cultural, and institutional changes that can create a more inclusive society?
- Based upon the readings within this chapter, how might you see yourself advocating for change?
- Legislation and Court Cases
- Social and Cultural Environmental Factors That Create or Contribute to Disability
- Alternative Activity to the Social Construction of Disability
- Institutional Ableism Examples
- Disability: What Do I Need for Access?
- Disability Jeopardy
- Ableism Panel
- Equity and Excellence in Higher Education: Universal Course Design (Syllabi, Tutorials, Strategies, Resources, etc.)
- Removing Bias in Language Guidelines for Non-Handicapping Language in APA Journals Committee on Disability Issues in Psychology
Helpful Websites for Students with Learning Disabilities - Compiled by Monica Dauphinais
- Teaching techniques for encouraging motivation, metacognition, etc.; most are classroom based but reading through these may provide inspiration for your own creative approaches.
- Online Videos; Topics include: Learning Strategies for General Chem., Time Management, Note taking, Stress Management, Reading Improvement (including reading rate and comprehension), and Strategic Learning; all videos have option for captions. http://www.muskingum.edu/%7Ecal/database/
- High School to College Learning Strategies, including developing self knowledge, study skills, student responsibility at college, accommodations, alternative ways to learn, college survival skills for the LD student, college considerations, and preparing for the transition.
- Content area specific learning strategies.
- General Purpose learning strategies (such as motivation, test anxiety, organization, memory, attention and learning, etc.)
- Post-grad learning—includes career planning, internships, securing first job, adjusting to job, social skills in the workplace, and managing finances.
- The Biology Project—aims to improve biology understanding by providing free access to high quality learning materials.
- Study skills self help info.
- Study guides and strategies; topics include: preparing, learning, studying, classroom participation, learning with others, online learning and communicating, reading skills, preparing for tests, taking tests, writing basics, writing types, research, project management, math, and science and technology (each category has subcategories, and quite a bit of depth).
- Finding a good place to study.
- Study skills guide for students (Education Atlas).
- Reading comprehension
- Remembering information
- Textbook site for “On Course” by Skip Downing; Includes self-assessment, success strategies, technology exercises (for those struggling with technology), self-management tools, and more.
- Includes Sections for each academic year of college (fresh, soph, etc.), and a post-grad section; a typical section includes study skills, living challenges, finances, health, and future planning; post-grad section includes career prep and grad school info.
- Free cliffs notes, book notes, etc. online (to encourage increased understanding of readings, not the avoidance of completing readings)
Additional Disability Web Links
- ICI Institute for Community Inclusion: Promoting the Inclusion of People with Disabilities
- Equity and Excellence in Higher Education: Universal Course Design
(syllabi, tutorials, strategies, resources, etc.)
- LD Online: LD Resources
- ABA Commission on Medical and Physical Disability Law
- Disability Resources on the Internet
- Association in Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD)
- Asperger's Disorder website
- U.S. Department of Education
- The Ragged Edge Magazine
- TASH is an international association of people with disabilities, their family members, other advocates, and professionals fighting for a society in which inclusion of all people in all aspects of society is the norm. TASH is an organization of members concerned with human dignity, civil rights, education, and independence for all individuals with disabilities.
- National Center for Learning Disabilities
- Jodi DiPiazza: Girl With Autism Duets With Katy Perry On “Firework” At Night of Too Many Stars Autism Benefit
- Caroline Casey on Ted—a woman who is blind shares a personal narrative about challenging disability-related stigmas and barriers.
- Ayisha Knight—A powerful Deaf poet/artist performs her piece “Until”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4py3SA4DVns See http://www.ayishaknight.com/ for additional information about Ayisha Knight.