Disability professionals and practitioners can learn much from their counterparts in countries around the world about enhancing disabled students' access to postsecondary education.
To that end, the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) has published a special internationally-focused issue of its peer-reviewed publication, the Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability (JPED). The journal compiles eight research papers and practice briefs by authors from countries as diverse as Ireland, Japan, Spain, Turkey, and the United States and includes a submission co-authored by a MIUSA Project Specialist and a disability practitioner in Turkey.
The Practice Brief "International Exchange with a Disability: Enhancing Experiences Abroad through Advising and Mentoring," by Ashley Holben and Claire Özel explores the role of advisors and peer mentors in the study abroad experiences of students with disabilities, outlining the steps taken by Özel to adapt MIUSA's strategies for supporting Turkish postsecondary students with disabilities in international exchange.
Read the Practice Brief by downloading the documents on this page. You may also read the full JPED Special International Issue (Volume 28, Issue 4) online. Multiple formats are available here.
Through interaction with an advisor or peer mentor and through exposure to the experiences of role models, students with disabilities gain an appreciation of the potential challenges and benefits of international exchange and make informed choices about whether, where, and how to go abroad. By adopting strategies for inclusive advising and role modeling, less experienced practitioners can develop expertise and understanding for advising prospective exchange participants with disabilities.
"We hope [country-to-country] exchanges include direct participation by students with disabilities and the staff working with them. Ultimately, we believe this participation will lead to an improvement in the quality of the post-school experience of everyone." - JPED Co-Editors