11:55 Lightning Session 2


Each presentation during the Lightning Session will be six to eight minutes, using a maximum of six slides. These rapid fire presentations will serve as a great introduction to projects, resources and approaches to inclusive education and learner support across the sector.  

Lightning 2.1: Mental health crisis – support for a student and teacher

Case study of the teacher exposed during an online lecture to a panic attack of a student suffering from depression. A summary: how does the university as an institution meet the needs of teachers and students?

The teacher was startled by a difficult situation during an online lecture: a message sent by a student via the chat-box about him being unable to stay online due to a panic attack. The very first brief moment was crucial due to hard decision to make: how to take care about the person in crisis, how to get help for herself, how to stay with the students online. The first response was a turning point for the relation with the student. The long term help was based on the university support system, consisting of (1) an easy access to a psychological counsellor, (2) a handbook and trainings for university staff, (3) based on the UDL,  an alternative way of teaching developed for the student unable to attend standard classes (4) an aid for a teacher in their relationships with the student during 1-to-1 classes. All these measures are essential for the teachers challenged  to the mental crisis situation.

Slides for Lightning 2.2, Day 2

Additional Resources/Further Reading

University Website


Katarzyna Jach

Wroclaw University of Science and Technology, Poland

Speaker Bio

Elżbieta Zienkiewicz

Wroclaw University of Science and Technology, Poland

Speaker Bio

Lightning 2.2: Mentors in the Workplace: The Experiences of Mentors working with TCPID Graduates

The Trinity Centre for People with Intellectual Disabilities (TCPID) has facilitated internships for graduates since 2017.  

The centre is conducting research to look at the experiences of workplace mentors who work with the graduates of the ASIAP programme using the Willing Able Mentoring (WAM) model.  It will identify how they have facilitated these placements, the challenges they’ve experienced, the supports and training they have received, how they have facilitated transitions during the placements and their suggestions on how the mentor and student experience could be improved.

The presentation will detail the findings of this research, outlining real life situations and examples of how this programme supports graduates with intellectual disabilities.

Slides for Lightning 2.1, Day 2

Emer Murphy

TCPID, Trinity College Dublin

Speaker Bio

Barbara Ringwood

TCPID, Trinity College Dublin

Speaker Bio

Lightning 2.3: Capturing The Student Voice to Effect Real Change

Engaged research describes a range of research approaches and methodologies that share a common interest in collaborative engagement with the community. It aims to improve, understand or investigate an issue of public interest or concern, including societal challenges. Importantly, engaged research is advanced with community partners rather than for or about them.  

Over the last five years, The Library of Trinity College Dublin has worked alongside the academic community to improve the lived experience of students with disabilities through several initiatives.  A user experience approach, whereby students with disabilities have played a central role in shaping research design has been crucial to the success of these collaborations. 

This presentation will describe the research process that has led to several outputs including a peer reviewed article co-authored by students with intellectual disabilities and a flagship project to improve the Library’s sensory environment.  It will also share preliminary findings of a collaboration between The Library, an academic department, The Trinity Inclusive Curriculum Project and The Disability Service to embed UDL principles and practices.

Additional Resources/Further Reading

Improving the university library experience of students with intellectual disabilities: a case study from an Irish institution 

Library Supports for Students with Disabilities 

Siobhán Dunne

Speaker Bio

Geraldine Fitzgerald

Subject Librarian, Library of Trinity College Dublin

Speaker Bio

Lightning 2.4: A culture of inclusion: Reimagining the university as a place for students with intellectual disabilities

The UCC id+ Project promotes the rights of people with intellectual disabilities (ID) to attend third-level education and to progress to paid employment.  The Certificates in Social Citizenship and Disability-Inclusive Practice are new programmes, where co-learning and co-creation of knowledge are foundational. The programme values draw on the human rights enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the principle of deliberative inclusion. These innovative programmes aim to include students with ID in all aspects of university life and learning. They learn with, learn from, and teach other students and staff. This contributes to cultural and systemic change, both within UCC and across the Irish higher education sector.  A critical factor in this work is the recruitment and participation of a range of people from across the university community to create, nurture and foster an environment where students with ID are recognised as equal learners.

Students with intellectual disabilities are, and can be, learners in universities. Making this happen requires a commitment to fostering a culture of inclusivity, engaging with educators and staff in all disciplines and working collaboratively to ensure deliberative inclusion.

Additional resources/further reading

id+ Website

Dr Nicola Maxwell

University College Cork (UCC)

Speaker Bio

Prof Maire Leane

Head of School of Applied Social Studies, UCC

Speaker Bio

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This article appeared in the AHEAD website. Visit www.ahead.ie for more information