Student experience workstream

Workstream 1 of the Disability Action Plan focuses on improving student experience through a sense of belonging. This work includes making the provision of supports more responsive to students’ needs.

The Associate Director of Student Wellbeing and Engagement, Campus Life, is responsible for this workstream. These are the deliverables, and the associated tasks and achievements. The task tracking, status and next steps are updated every six months. As of July 2023, five of the six tasks are on track and integrated into current services and practices. A further task is scheduled to commence in 2024.

Please email all feedback and suggestions to Vicki Watson, Manager – Equity.  

Awareness of supports for students with disabilities

Current and prospective students know support services are available for students with disabilities. Student uptake and feedback will inform the continual improvement of these services.
Tracking: On track
Status: Green, no issues identified

Achievements to date

  • A specialised disability case management system, Symplicity Access, is now in place. Campus Life has recruited a project manager who will support effective use of the software across all faculties. Symplicity Access will improve access to student supports.
  • We have piloted disability awareness training for staff, using resources provided by Te Pou.
  • We reviewed complaints processes and new online reporting forms are now available.
  • A Wellbeing and Preparedness Assessment has been designed to encourage new students to engage with support services.  This will help to introduce students to relevant supports, including Disability supports, at the start of their student journey.

Next steps

  • Embed use of disability case management software, Symplicity Access, across faculties.
  • Implementation of faculty supports for students completing assessments under Special Conditions.
  • Accessibility audit of student-facing web content and disability service.
  • The Wellbeing and Preparedness Assessment will be rolled out to newely enrolled undergraduate students, and later to post graduate students.

Pathways to study

Enhanced student supports, promotion of undergraduate scholarships and accessible application processes. A higher proportion of students who choose to study at Waipapa Taumata Rau will be students with disabilities.
Tracking:  On track
Status: Green, no issues identified

Achievements to date

Next steps

A sense of community and belonging

Suitable student-centred study spaces will be delivered across all campuses. Decisions on dedicated and safe spaces for students will involve students with disabilities.
Tracking:  On track
Status: Green, no issues identified

Achievements to date

  • Te Kāuta Student Kitchen and Lounge opened on City Campus following engagement with disabled students to inform design and accessibility.
  • The Disabled Students' Association is now a formally recognised club.
  • Disabled students have informed the design of student centred study spaces and supports. Recent work includes an Autism Chill Out Zone pilot and improved disability support at the Grafton campus.

Next steps

  • Work with Libraries and Learning Services to upgrade the General Library study space.
  • Review membership of the Student Consultative Group to ensure representation is appropriate.
  • Continue to support the student-led Auckland University Disabled Students' Association, as appropriate.
  • Disabled students will inform the design and implementation of an Accessibility Lounge located in the General Library.

Pathways to employment

Support students with disabilities into meaningful employment via Career Development and Employment Services.

  • Understand good practice for increasing employment opportunities, including employment opportunities with Waipapa Taumata Rau.
    Tracking:  On track
    Status: Amber, reliance on external providers
  • Empower students with disabilities to self-advocate for meaningful employment.
    Tracking:  On track
    Status: Amber, reliance on external providers
  • Investigate how to track successful transition to meaningful employment
    Status: Begins 2024

Achievements to date

  • Renewed Memorandum of Understanding with Workbridge.
  • Individualised employment support continues to be provided via Workbridge and the University’s Career Development and Employability Service team.
  • Continued engagement with Ministry of Social Development on public sector internships and graduate programme opportunities for disabled students.
  • Support provided for externally run workshops and presentations that assist disabled students into work.
  • We have approached external provider Be.Lab around their 12-week paid internship programme for students with disabilities. The Be.Lab programme is now promoted on the University website.

Next steps

  • Workstream will increase its focus on new and existing external and internal engagement to support disabled students into internships and employment.
  • Monitoring and reporting processes for student experiences with Workbridge and Ministry of Social Development.
  • Continued support of externally run workshops focused on assisting disabled students into work. Be.Lab will facilitate another presentation to students.
  • Student Disability Services will work to re-establish the presence of Workbridge on campus. Disabled students will once again be able to arrange appointments with Workbridge.