World Federation of the Deaf – Sign Languages are for Everyone
23 September 2021
On the 9th of November, EUD followed a webinar on inclusive mobility. This webinar was part of the two-years EPFIME project, funded by the Erasmus+ programme, focusing on the mobility of students with disabilities, coordinated by the Support Centre Inclusive Higher Education (SIHO) and the Flemish Ministry of Education and Training in Belgium.
Valérie Van Hees, Coordinator, and Dominique Montagnese, Inclusive Mobility Expert from the SIHO presented the research report and a booklet of good practices based on survey data collection, with feedback of 1,134 responses from students with disabilities, 114 higher education institutions and 23 ministries of Education across the European Higher Education Area.
Some of the testimonials, key findings, good practices and recommendations that were shared during the webinar were the following:
During the webinar, personal stories were presented from students with different disabilities. A deaf respondent to the survey, for example, explained that ‘much of the information on the foreign exchange programmes is given via public talks without captioning, interpreters or video recordings, and questions are generally taken verbally or over the phone, which is inaccessible to me as a deaf person’.
Mobility programmes are key opportunities to grow personally, gain relevant skills and make everlasting connections. Moving freely within Europe for the purposes of education and training lay also at the heart of the European project. In light of this, EUD has been an active player in advocating for an inclusive and accessible mobility programmes, including the Erasmus+ programme, and is an active member of the Erasmus+ Coalition to follow closely all relevant developments. In this regard, EUD has particularly requested that the learning mobility of the Erasmus+ programme is accompanied by sign language support prior, during and after the learning mobility, in the same way that this support exists for all other EU languages.
At the end of November 2020, EUD published its position paper on freedom of movement, which includes a specific chapter on learning mobility for deaf learners with recommendations. Access the position paper here.
Access webpage of the webinar here.
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