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Students with special needs

Студенти з особливими потребами

According to statistics, from 2.5 million students having home education at the institutions of I-IV levels of accreditation, 8000 are people with special needs (disabilities). At older times, the Soviet system operated on the one principle: if you are healthy, then study and work, if you’re sick – don’t bother others. Nowadays, Ukraine has done notable changes: the rights of the disabled on the development, education and rehabilitation are enshrined in many legal acts.

Education is available to all

Support for teaching students with disabilities in institutions of higher education is available in all developed countries. It creates so-called barrier-free university campuses with appropriate buildings, dormitories and other facilities where these students receive technical training, help of psychologists, doctors and social workers. Thus, in Netherlands, students are, above all, equipped with all the necessary technical means which the state pays for. Germany is creating social support funds. In the UK, a special support for students with disabilities is made with the help of state grants.

Participation in national social programs and our university is. In FIVT MMI and today you can find young people who communicate in sign language. Some of them possessed the most difficult in the university specialty "Computer systems and networks", others - engineering technology or equipment for metal forming.

Individual support

Of course, every student with disabilities have certain features and limitations that impede learning. To work with such people, specific methods, educational technology and adaptive hardware should be applied to the educational process. Typically, these students are very curious and diligent, but they have some problems like gaps in knowledge, increased fatigue, isolation, low self-esteem vulnerability. However, the pace of learning or the number of lessons can’t be reduced for them because it reduces the quality of training. Thus, the system of support is implemented to their training, comprehensive care and support.

Whoever employee of the university departments was asked by "KP" correspondent in preparing this material, the general answer was: "They are like our own children."

Teaching in KPI

Typically, students with disabilities listen streaming lectures together with all the other students (the sign language interpreters are present also), but for the workshops they are divided into separate subgroups (6-8 people), which the teacher gives more time and attention, provides additional handouts.

Most problems arise with understanding and mastering the terminology. Sometimes, firstly it has to be explained to the interpreter, and then he delivers the  information to the listeners. And it is especially difficult when a specialist (conferred by UTOG) has low qualifications or doesn’t have it at all (as happened in the department of mechanics of plasticity of materials).

It is not easy for "special" students adapt to the dormitory (most of them - out of town). Although there are leaders - not only confident they feel but even get married.

Work motivates

Director of Student Social Service T.S.Vorotnyak teaches philosophy at classes where the students have problems with hearing. Concerning different levels of students’ knowledge, she had to adapt her lectures to make less scientific-sounding, communicating "simple" language. She encourages students not only to communicate with gestures, but also to use common language, public speeches. During the semester they have to prepare several speeches on specific topics, and if they speak fluently, read it. Sometimes it is difficult for students to concentrate, to highlight the key facts of the text, and here comes the teacher.

‘Working with these students’, finished Tatyana ‘Encourages teachers to seek new methods available for feeding material.’

As one student admitted: "It turned out that I can not keep the look. I still keep it straight when I see a group of people speaking sign language. I deliberately accelerate or step, or just staying paralyzed - they attract my attention like aliens. All this is bad, embarrassing. But I still do not know how to behave – they were not present in my school childhood, I have no experience in communicating with them, no skills ... "

So it turned out, socializing with the disabled is mutually necessary. Not only they need us (healthy people, but they are required to support us as well, not to lose the ability to support and sympathize, perceive the world more in all its manifestations.


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