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Fostering an international initiative to mitigate the barriers of full participation for geoscience students and practitioners with disabilities
Dr. Christopher Atchison

This event took place on 29th June 2015 at 2:00pm (13:00 GMT)
Knowledge Media Institute, Berrill Building, The Open University, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom, MK7 6AA

The importance of experiential learning is well documented in geoscience literature.  However, experience-based learning often places profound barriers on individuals with physical and sensory disabilities seeking to obtain certifications and degrees in many STEM training programs.  Since curricular requirements in most geoscience programs include rigorous field-based learning components, a common perception suggests that students who are physically unable to study beyond a controlled laboratory or classroom environment are therefore unable to participate.  In addition, a many assume that most geoscience careers do not accommodate individuals with disabilities, perhaps due to a limited awareness of accessible career opportunities or relevant industry-required skill expectations.  Regardless of the rationale, of all STEM disciplines, individuals with disabilities remain most underrepresented in the geosciences. 

To establish a community of support for students and geoscientists with disabilities and to promote accessible opportunities in the geosciences, the International Association for Geoscience Diversity (IAGD) was established in 2008.  Committed to improving access to the geosciences for individuals with disabilities, the IAGD strives to celebrate the diverse abilities of all geoscientists while advancing knowledge of access and accommodation within the geosciences through scientific research.  This presentation will discuss recent efforts of the IAGD to provide accessible opportunities and resources for geoscience students, and practitioners, focused on increasing and retaining the number of diverse geoscientists worldwide. 

The webcast was open to 1000 users

(55 minutes)

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