AHEAD: Association for Higher Education Access & Disability
Creating inclusive environments in education & employment for people with disabilities.


Call for Student Views on Inclusive Assessment in FET and Higher Education

QQI in partnership with AHEAD and the Disability Advisors Working Network (DAWN) are conducting work to explore how to make assessment practices in further and higher education more inclusive of all students. Students come to further and higher education from all walks of life. They have different cultural backgrounds, different life and caring demands, different identities, and ability/disability profiles. But do assessment practices reflect this diversity? 

Research shows that some diverse student cohorts are disadvantaged by common assessment methods such as timed exams (AHEAD, 2021; Smith, 2011), and that diverse learners often feel certain assessment formats are not authentic or relevant to what they had learned, or how performance is measured in the world outside (Tai et al, 2022). Other students report being over-assessed, with 'bunching' of assessment deadlines frequently resulting in unsustainable workloads (QQI, 2021). So, we are exploring what assessment practice that is inclusive of everyone looks like, ensuring all learners get a fair chance to demonstrate their ability. 

To support this work, we are gathering together the views of students on this topic in video form, and would love to hear your thoughts! These responses will help to inform national approaches to inclusive assessment and may feature in a video showcased at a national event on this topic in April 2024, and shared on YouTube and social media. You can read more about this below.

Everyone who submits a video will be entered into a draw for a €100 All Go card, which can be used in shops around Ireland.

If interested, record your thoughts on the questions below in video form by Friday March 23rd, and submit it using the instructions below! The whole process is easy to do on your laptop or phone,  takes about 10-12 minutes, and submissions in Irish Sign Language are also welcome.

How to Contribute

Click this link to be brought to the submission platform. There you'll find a short introductory video, followed by opportunities to video record answers to the three following questions in sequence:

  • Have you had a positive experience of assessment which made it more inclusive for you? What worked well for you and why? (max 45 seconds)
  • Have you had a negative experience of assessment which made it less inclusive for you? What about the assessment approach made it less inclusive and why? (max 45 seconds)
  • What would make for a more inclusive assessment experience for you? (max 45 seconds)

Don't worry, you can re-record as many times as you like to get the right takes. Be sure not to name specific colleges, courses or teachers in your video —we are interested in your general experience of the inclusivity of assessment and how to make it more inclusive into the future. Also make sure that for data protection reasons, no other people are visible in the background of your video.

The deadline for submissions is Friday March 23rd.

Start Recording and Submitting Your Video >>

 Tips for a Good Quality Video

  • Select an area with natural or bright lighting, and ensure your face is clearly visible and centred in the shot.
  • Make sure you are in a quiet area, and you can be clearly heard in the video – background noise can be picked up easily. We also welcome Irish Sign Language videos which we are happy to translate and caption for sharing.
  • Try to keep your answers short and sweet – within the 45 second limit for each response.
  • Be sure not to name specific colleges, courses or teachers in your video —we are interested in your general experience of the inclusivity of assessment and how to make it more inclusive into the future. 

 How We Will Use and Process Your Data

Videos submitted will initially be shared with a small review team made up of staff from QQI, AHEAD, and selected professionals with assessment expertise. Once non-complete or ‘off-topic’ submissions have been filtered out, these videos will be shared with a video editor who will edit together a short video summarising the views offered by students. The resulting video will be aired at a national conference on inclusive assessment, and may be shared on YouTube, other social media channels used by the organisers, and official websites such as QQI’s and AHEAD’s. QQI and/or AHEAD may decide to host unedited versions of the video on their websites in a video gallery with other student contributions.

Ultimately, you should be aware and comfortable that the video you submit may be shared in the public domain before deciding to take part, and you will be asked during the submission process that you consent to this use.

Other data submitted on the accompanying submission form such as your name, college and email address, will be stored securely in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and destroyed after the completion of the associated event, and once the draw for the €100 All Go card has been made. AHEAD may contact you in relation to your submission, and/or in relation to the draw for the €100 AllGo voucher should you be a winner.


If you are having accessibility difficulties with the video submission process, or have another accessibility question, please contact ahead@ahead.ie and AHEAD will provide support in the process. Videos from Irish Sign Language users are welcome and will be translated and captioned by AHEAD before publication.


AHEAD. (2021). Learning from Home During Covid-19 2020/21: A Survey of Irish FET and HE Students with Disabilities. AHEAD Educational Press.

QQI. (2021). NEXT STEPS for Teaching and Learning: Moving Forward Together: QQI Insight on Assessment 2021. QQI. https://www.teachingandlearning.ie/wp-content/uploads/QQI-Insight-on-Assessment.pdf

Tai, J. H.-M., Dollinger, M., Ajjawi, R., Jorre de St Jorre, T., Krattli, S., McCarthy, D., & Prezioso, D. (2022). Designing assessment for inclusion: an exploration of diverse students’ assessment experiences. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education, 1–15. doi:10.1080/02602938.2022.2082373

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