“My” Student Services

  • 02 March 2018
  • 09:30 - 16:00
  • Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow
  • 0

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My Student Services“My” Student Services: making services accessible for all students

 This event is cancelled 

Unfortunately this event is cancelled because of dangerous weather in the Glasgow area (Find out more).

This one day event explores how Student Services can more effectively engage students from different racial, cultural and minority groups, so that these students feel comfortable and included when accessing services. Consider how to design your services to account for competing equalities priorities, and how to recognise and correct unconscious biases that impact your initiatives and staff attitudes.

Location, time and price

This one day event takes place at the Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow.

Registration opens at 09:30, and the first session starts at 10:00.

Here are the delegate prices (which include lunch):

  • AMOSSHE named member - £170 (log in to access this rate)
  • Member colleague (non-member, but an employee of an AMOSSHE member organisation) - £185
  • Non-member (individuals, not-for-profit organisations and higher education providers not associated with AMOSSHE) - £215
  • Corporate non-member - £255

You don’t need to pay VAT for AMOSSHE events. Before booking, please read our booking terms and conditions.

Programme and speakers

Here's the confirmed agenda for the day.

Time Session
09:30 Registration and refreshments
10:00 Welcome and context

Delivering services to our intercultural community

Wendy Davies (Director, OSDC - Organisation and Social Development Consultants Limited) draws on her experience of delivering cross-cultural awareness training in a number of universities to explore some of the joys and pitfalls of working in a multicultural and international environment. This includes looking at the way cultural norms and values can impact on learning and student life, as well as the importance of recognising that we all carry culture that can impact on the way we interact with others.

Wendy is a Director of OSDC, a company that has been providing training, research and consultancy in the field of equality, capacity building and social inclusion since 1985. Wendy has provided training and consultancy on a range of inclusion issues to many public, voluntary and international development sector organisations in many different settings. This has included writing training manuals and good practice manuals. Her clients have included the Irish Government, the Scottish Government, VSO, the Church of England, the Equality and Human Rights Commission and Huddersfield Giants Rugby Club. She has been providing training to universities to support their internationalisation agenda for over 10 years.

11:00 Break and refreshments

Raising awareness and reducing the impact of unconscious bias on student success and wellbeing

In the higher education sector, there has been increasing interest in the concept of unconscious bias and the impact it can have on decision-making, particularly in relation to student admissions and student success. Student Services at the University of Brighton has rolled out in-house 'Understanding Unconscious Bias' training to all staff in the department. The training has enabled individual staff to reflect on how they communicate with and support different groups of students, and how potential unconscious biases may be influencing their behaviour. It has also prompted useful discussions about what we can do as individuals and as a department to reduce our biases and limit the impact they may have on the services we provide to students.

This workshop, led by Marianne Lemond (Student Experience and Equalities Manager) and Jo Tomlinson (Counselling and Wellbeing Manager, University of Brighton) shares reflections and learning points from rolling out the training, and includes some examples of the activities used in the training sessions. The workshop will also explore how Student Services and the university's Equality and Diversity Unit are working with academic schools to roll out unconscious bias training to academic and placement staff, and to embed unconscious bias awareness in the curriculum for professional courses such as physiotherapy, nursing, and health and social care.

12:45 Lunch and networking

Encouraging marginalised groups to access services

How might we, as Student Services personnel, design more inclusive services for our users? How might we encourage student engagement in an exchange of ideas about what our services should look like? How can we ensure that our support services can be called “my Student Services” by all students - especially those who normally might not access support due to the stigma of help-seeking?

This workshop explores how we might go about making support services more accessible by identifying student groups who are not accessing services, the conscious or unconscious barriers that deter them, and how we might design more inclusive and engaging services. Discover an example of an event introduced at the University of Surrey to overcome barriers to a cohort of students not accessing support services.

Rotimi Akinsete (Director of Wellbeing, University of Surrey) leads a conversation with Sir Geoff Palmer OBE, Scotland’s first black professor. Sir Geoff shares his experiences in UK higher education, and reflects on the Scottish Government’s recent Race Equality Action Plan and how this might impact on the student experience. You’ll have the opportunity to reflect on the conversation and discuss whether current support services have consciously or unconsciously designed-in barriers to access, and how we might better design our services to encourage marginalised groups to consider using support services.

14:45 Break and refreshments

Welcoming “all faiths and none”: inclusive approaches to religion or belief in Student Services

How can we ensure Student Services are welcoming and inclusive to “all faiths and none”? There is often little time in equality training or strategy devoted entirely to the protected characteristic of ‘religion or belief’ (including no belief) and how this aspect of a student’s identity might overlap with issues of ‘race’, gender, nationality and culture. Informed by research and conversations with a variety of student groups, Jess Moody (Senior Policy Adviser, Equality Challenge Unit) leads you through a series of exercises to help start identifying ways to improve the inclusivity of services to students of different beliefs. You’ll leave this session:

  • Informed about the key areas of concern around accessibility and inclusivity around the protected characteristic of ‘religion or belief’.
  • Confident to start holding more conversations about the inclusion of religion or belief in service design and delivery.
  • Aware of where to go for further information and support.
  • Empowered to start reviewing and improving your own inclusive approaches.
16:00 Finish

Photo by Giulia Bertelli on Unsplash


AMOSSHE, The Student Services Organisation is a UK non-profit professional association. Company registration number 4778650.
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