Contents
1       Executive
Summary. 3
2       Introduction. 4
3       Literature
review.. 5
4       Methodology. 7
5       Data
analysis and recommendation. 9
5.1        Data
analysis. 9
5.2        Main
issues identified. 11
5.3        Recommendations. 12
5.4        Third
party recommendations. 17
6       Conclusion. 18
7       References. 19
8       Appendices. 20
 

 

1         
Executive Summary

 

Main objective of our report is to identify an issue
in University of Sri Jayewardenepura and to provide recommendations for the
issue. As our problem, we selected the university insufficiency of facilities
for disabled students within the university premises. Disabled are one of the vulnerable
party in our society, who needs a special care. They along with their family
face many challenges every day in their life. With that situation, we believe
that we should provide a special concern for such students in our university as
well.

To gather information about disabled students and to
find whether there are sufficient amount of facilities for them, we did two
researches, one with the faculties in the university and the other, with the
students. As per the results of the research, we were able to identify that
there are no sufficient facilities and the students are disappointed about the
situation.

In order to overcome this issue, we came up with some
recommendations to help them in the way we can. Through our recommendation we
want to bring the attention of management to remove the drawbacks and to
increase the facilities for disabled students within the university. We hope
that our report and its recommendations will cause a change in their lives for their
betterment.

 

 

2         
 

3         
Introduction

 

 

Within a year thousands
of students enter to the university with lots of hopes. They come here to
continue their learning, to learn essential skills to pursue a particular
career to find a better job with a good salary, to meet new friends, to have
more independence, to experience the university life etc. So each and every
students that comes to our university, “University of Sri Jayewardenepura” also
have the same hope and university too help them to a certain extend to
accomplish their goals.

But the problem is all
the students here do not have the ability to get the use of these opportunities
easily as others. We have some students with different disabilities. Such as
physical disabilities, intellectual disabilities, vision impairments, hearing
problems, mental disabilities, arms or leg handicapped etc. These students
should not be discriminated and disadvantaged by the university. University
need to ensure some adjustments to facilitates those students. So our main
concern through this report is to help those students with disabilities, who
could not make their voice to the society and suffering a lot because of this
problems.

As we see our university
provides a variety of facilities to students to help their studies. There are
qualified lecturers, lecture halls with good facilities, friendly staff, and a
huge library, there are lots of clubs to join, you can sing, dance, there are
no. of sports facilities, a gymnasium and many more. But there is a question
whether all these facilities are arranged in a way, so that disabled students
can also enjoy those. Without any further discussions the answer will be no.
Because lack of consideration was extended on the needs of them when designing
those facilities.

In order to help this
problem, we first gathered information about the students with disabilities by
talking with them, and also we gathered information about the facilities
available here in our university by providing a questioner to some faculties.
By doing all these what we hope is to point out the missing facilities
available and to provide some recommendations to help these students. So they
will get the some opportunities. As all the other students in the university.

 

4         
Literature review

 

To get the base to our
report we went through some past researches and past paper articles about the
issue. When referring to the work of previous researchers. 

We first found the
research done by

·        
Uv
Kiran, Babasaheb Bhimroo University, Lucknow. On infrastructure facilities for
differently abled students. A comparative study of government and
Non-Government institutions.

                   The primary goal of that
research was to identify the differences in infrastructure facilities and
student’s level of satisfaction. The result show that Non-Government
institutions were providing more infrastructure in comparison to government
students for disable students. According to their research none of the
institutions have walking aids, internal phones and two-way radio remitter
facilities. Majority of the Government institutions have very low level 0f
satisfaction regarding the availability of facilities for disable students.

Figure?1www.researchgate.net

Next we
referred the,

·        
Protection
of the rights of person with disabilities. Act no: 28 of 1996.  

                   That
act was establish for the establishment of a national council for person with disabilities,
for the promotion advancement and protection of rights of persons with disabilities
in Sri Lanka.

 

 

 

 

 

·        
Research
on managing the transition to university for disabled students; by Mark Taylor,
Mike Baskett and Chris Wren.

                 Purpose of that research is to
examine mechanism for managing the transition for school to university for
disabled students. There they have outline a number of areas that need of
students with a disability. They recommend that education infrastructure are
required to make reasonable adjustment for with a disability.

Figure Error! No text of specified style in document.?2www.emeraldinsight.com

 

·        
Article
on the differently abled community of Sri Lanka by Jayani Balasubramanium  

                  There
she has given her review and opinion about developing the facilities for
disabled people in Sri Lanka to create a positive change in the world.

 

Through all these past
researches what we found in conclusion is that facilities available for
disabled is lack. And need to be improved. So through our research we aim to
highlight those issues and provide recommendation for those issues, with the
help of these past researches.

 

5         
Methodology

 

Main aim of our research
is to increase the facilities in our university for disabled students. So that
they can also achieve a great success it they are given enough support and
opportunities. Since disabled people are actually differently abled people,
they should also be given enough facilities within the university to improve
their skills. So they will also get the opportunity and pleasure of enjoying a
normal life as all the other students. We should not look at them as a burden. Instead
we should encourage them to face their life challenges with courage.

There can be differently
types of disabilities. Mainly we can categories in to 13 arears such as,

1.     
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)

2.     
Blind or low vision (BLV)

3.     
Cognitive disabilities (CD)

4.     
Deaf or hard of hearings (DHH)

5.     
Deaf-Blind (DB)

6.     
Development delays (DD) Early childhood
only

7.     
Emotional disabilities

8.     
Language or speech impairment (LSI)

9.     
Multiple disabilities (MD)

10. 
Other health impairments (OHI)

11. 
 Orthopedic impairment (OI)

12. 
Specific learning disabilities (SLD)

13. 
Traumatic brain injury (TBI)

Belonging to one of these
would be consider as disabled. The main thing is we should understand that
students with disabilities are not different from others. But they have some
special needs that need to be addressed carefully.

According Jackie Concley
(We referred google documents) there are many ways in which you can help
disabled people. He has mainly highlighted some general rules for helping
disables.

1.     
Treat them as equals

 We should also treat these students as equal
to other because they are no exceptions. They also like to have friends, have
fun and to engage in university activities as others. So we should not
hesitate, and be afraid to make them participated in all the activities. We
should always encourage them.

 

2.     
Ask before you help

 You
should not always jump in and help those people. Because without knowing their
need we could make a harm to them than good. So should politely ask whether
they need any help and especially we should not offer any medical advices to
them without proper knowledge.

 

3.     
Never assume someone does or does not have
a disability.

Without
knowing the correct incident we should not call they        disable. Because with the disabilities
they could act and feel different. Those kinds of behaviors can have an adverse
effect on them.

4.     
Do not stare at the disabled

 We not should just stare at the disabled
students. So then they will feel embarrassed. They also live a life as others.
Simply look at them as the way you look at others.

 

5.     
Respects and understand confidentially

 When interacting with such people, we should
be respectful in both act and words. And we should always protect their
privacy.

 

All these rules are
applied when dealing with such students. In general when it comes to a
university other than all these we should ensure some special facilities for
them to help their studies. According to our research some students tend to
drop university due to lack of facilities, which is not a good sign anyway.

Unless universities talks
necessary steps to improve facilities the rate of disable students dropping out
the university will increase drastically. Universities welcoming the
application of disable students also make them responsible for adjusting.
Necessary facilities to access the course. If you cannot facilitate you should
not admit them. If you admit you should fulfill their needs.

 

6         
Data analysis and
recommendation

 

6.1      
Data analysis

Number of disables and
available facilities in each faculty

To find the number of
disable students in each faculty and how they treat them and to find the
available special facilities, we did a small research by providing a questioner
to each faculty. Given below are the results.

1.     
Faculty of Humanities and Social
Science   (refer annexure 01)

·        
There are about 30 disabled students out
of which 5 have bearing aids.

·        
One important issue we got to know is that
those five students are learning the lecture through the gestures of the
lecture. And because of using microphones they could not see the movements of
the lips of lecturer. And they tend drop lectures because of this issue.

·        
No special arrangement have being taken to
help those students, even though they have reported the issue to the department

2.      Faculty
of Medical Sciences

·        
As per the gathered information they
currently don’t educate any disabled students

·        
But they have made necessary arrangements
and facilities to get them join with the faculty.

3.     
Faculty of Management Studies and
Commerce (refer annexure 03)

·        
According to their information provided they
currently educate 02 disabled students

·        
They said that they are satisfied with the
available facilities and also mentioned that they don’t think lack of
facilities as a barrier for their studies

4.     
Faculty of Applied Science (refer annexure 02)

·        
This also have no disabled students
currently

·        
And they are not satisfied with the
available facilities and also consider it as a barrier to peruse their goals,
and is willing to increase the facilities

Here we have
graphed the results of the research as follows

 

 

 

 

Main issues identified

Through the whole
research, we could identify some major issues faced by disable as follows.

1.     
Lack of elevators

There
is only four or five elevators for the entire university. There is a difficulty
for them to reach the lectures hall, at least there must be sloped stair case to
take wheel chairs easily. Because a small stair case can be a huge barrier for
them.

 

2.     
Transportation problems

There
is a problem for them to travel from one place to another, for that they always
need a help from another student. So it is better to have a special kind of
transportation system if possible to help them.

3.     
Lack of human support

For
some students they always need a support person. Always their friend cannot
fulfill this need. There should be some person at special places like canteen,
library, administrative building to help them to reach their needs.

 

4.     
Accommodation problems

These
students should be provided with special accommodation facilities. Such as
special hostel rooms in ground floor with attached bathrooms.

 

5.     
Lack of sanitary facility

There
is only one washroom for the disable in the entire university. While improving
the facilities for other students, we think that their facilities should also
be improved.

 

6.     
Library facilities

One
issue in the library is that, there is no elevator for the library. They also
have an issue to access the books they want. It is good to have a library
assistance to help the students to find the book they want. What they request
is to increase the technology in a way to support them, and increase the number
of braille books, apply voice recognition software etc.

 

7.     
Lack of counseling facilities

Disabled
means not only physical disabilities, mental disorders can also be taken into
this category. So there must be a proper counselling service specially designed
for the needs of disabled students. Then they can share their ideas with them
without hesitating.

 

 

6.2      
Recommendations

 

1)     
Staircase with a slope

 

–         
Differently abled
students such as students with leg handicapped and students who are using wheel
chairs cannot use usual staircases. They want staircases with a slope. Many
public and private companies, supermarkets, banks and hospitals are using
staircases with a slope.

–         
When consider
about our university, we cannot see such kind of staircases. So, it is useful
that, building such kind of staircases in our university.

 

–         
For an example,
this is the picture of faculty of Humanities and Social Science. In here there
is no staircase with a slope. So, students who are using wheelchairs cannot go
that faculty.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

–         
This is the
picture of Central Hospital, Maradana. In that hospital, we can see that kind
of staircase, specially built for patients using wheelchairs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2)     
Walking paths for Blind students

 

–         
According to the
data obtained from the Blind Students’ Association of University of Sri Jayewardenepura,
there are 19 blinds students in our university.

–         
For that students,
there should be special walking paths called ‘Tactile Paving’.

–         
“Tactile Paving’
is a system of textured ground surface indicator found on footpaths, stairs and
train station platforms to assist pedestrians who are visually impaired.”
(Wikipedia)

–         
When consider
about our university, there is on such kind of walking paths for blind
students. So, building such kind of walking paths are very convenient for blind
students.

–         
This is a picture
of tactile paving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3)     
Elevator facilities

 

–         
It is must to have
elevator facilities in the university buildings even for differently abled
students. But, some buildings such as Second building of Soratha building,
Administration building and Library do not have any elevator facilities.

–         
So, leg handicapped
students and students using wheelchairs cannot participate for the lectures in
the first, second and third floor lecture rooms in the second building of
Soratha building and also if they wanted to go for upper floors in the
Administration building for some reason, there was no way to go.

–         
Thus, it is
possible to build elevators in such buildings.

 

 

4)     
Disable Student Allowance (DSA)

 

–         
It is useful to
grant a Disabled Student Allowance (DSA) for differently abled students.

–         
According to the
University of Cambridge Disabled Students’ Allowances can help with the cost
of,

o   Specialist equipment for an example a computer if any
person need one because of his/her disability

o   Non-medical helpers

o   Extra travel expense because of his/her disability

o   Other disability-related costs of studying

–         
Our university
should establish a reasonable adjustments fund which will help support the cost
of the following Non-Medical Help(NMH) tasks such as,

·        
Note takers

·        
Study assistants

·        
Proof reading

·        
Specialist study
skills

·        
Specialist mentoring

–         
This is a special
facility available in the University of Cambridge. So, if our university
provided this kind of allowance, it would be a really help for differently
abled students.

 

5)     
Counselling facilities

 

–         
“Counselling
psychology is a psychological specialty that encompasses research and applied
work in several broad domains” (Wikipedia)

–         
Our university has
a counselling center. But, our recommendation is, make special counselling
facilities for differently abled students.

–         
Sometimes, that students are mentally depressed
because of their disability. So, if our university provided special counselling
facility to that students, it would be very serviceable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.3      
Third party
recommendations

 

Other than our recommendations, we thought of getting
recommendations from students and university staff.

Following are some recommendations obtained from
university staff.

Ø  Common facilities, class room facilities, library
facilities, washroom facilities, canteen facilities, common rest room
facilities and transport facilities should be improved in the university for
differently abled students.

(Refer Annexures)

 

Following the recommendations obtained from the
students. (Refer Annexures 04-14)

Ø  Should give extra financial facilities

Ø  Should give more attention for them

Ø  Should give all the medical facilities in free of
charge for examples wheelchairs, spectacles and medicines

Ø  Add more elevators because the central elevator is not
functioning to every lecture room in the Soratha building

Ø  Add more lecture facilities for them

Ø   Provide a
special canteen for them

Ø  Provide special sanitary facilities

Ø  Provide medical facilities to examine them ones in a
month and for emergency cases

Ø  Aware other students the way to deal with them

 

7         
Conclusion

 

This report is intended to help the students with
different disabilities to face their challenges. Since limited attention is
extended to help those students, we through this report hope to make a noise to
bring the management attention to help disabled students. We basically did two
researches, one with the faculties of Universities of Sri Jayewardenepura, and
the other one with the students in the university. As per the research we
learnt that a very low level of facilities and services are rendered to the
students with disabilities. The level of satisfaction of the disabled students
about the facilities is reducing drastically. Many of the students have dropped
down university because of lack of facilities. Through our research we mainly
identified transportation problems, accommodation problems, difficulties to
reach the library, sanitary problems, lack of human support, and lack of
equipment as main issues of them. So from our report we recommend some
facilities that could be implemented in our university to help the disabled
students. Some of our recommendations are to make stair cases with slopes,
increase the no of elevators, and have a special fund to help, adopt user
friendly technologies, build barrier free environments, provide financial help
to buy equipments, to have signal boards for disabled students, to provide a
human assistant etc. This is our genuine effort to help the students with
disabilities, because it brought tears to our eyes while listening to their
stories. Our only hope is to make this successful and to bring management
attention to help those students.

8         
References

 

https://www.unr.edu/nevada-today/news/2017/faces-of-the-pack-sri-lanka-startup

http://www.ft.lk/article/518805/Exclusion-through-inclusivity:-The-differently-abled-community-of-Sri-Lanka

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/262380294_Infrastructural_Facilities_for_Differently_Abled_Students_-_A_Comparative_Study_of_Government_and_Non-Government_Institutions

http://srilankalaw.lk/Volume-VI/protection-of-the-rights-of-persons-with-disabilities-act.html

 

9         
Appendices

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