Note: This is a student project from a course affiliated with the Ethnography of the University Initiative. EUI supports faculty development of courses in which students conduct original research on their university, and encourages students to think about colleges and universities in relation to their communities and within larger national and global contexts.

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Title:The Disabled Body Abroad: The Climate of Study Abroad Programs for Students with Disabilities at the University of Illinois
Author(s):Vitosky, Caitlin; Wheeler, Stephanie; Wieser, John S.
Study Abroad
Students with Disabilities
Abstract:This ethnographic investigation focuses on evaluating the contemporary climate of study abroad programs for students with disabilities at the University of Illinois. The main research component involved collecting interviews with students with disabilities who have or have attempted to study abroad, university officials in the study abroad office, or who are affiliated with college study abroad programs, and staff members at DRES, the campus unit for disability services and resources. Research objectives include understanding the factors which bar or enable students with disabilities from studying abroad, opportunities that may exist specifically for students with disabilities to study abroad, and how different campus units (i.e., Study Abroad Office and DRES) interact to address these issues. The research reveals that while the University is committed to providing inclusiveness to all students, the reality of disabilities and the requirements of certain programs at times make this ideal difficult to achieve. Furthermore we found that there are few dedicated resources for students with disabilities regarding study abroad programs, as well as a generally vague understanding for how campus units can work together to solve this disconnect. Finally, our interviews revealed several interesting, albeit common, attitudes able-bodied individuals tend to have, consciously or not, with regards to disabled individuals.
Issue Date:2011
Course / Semester:Kinesiology 442 Fall 2011
Instructor, Melissa Littlefield
What is a body? Is there such a thing as “the” body? How are bodies produced? What do they represent? Who gets to represent them? In this course we examine bodies in history, in particular cultural contexts, in international and national forums. Readings vary widely to include anthropological, historical, psychological and sociological perspectives. Our assigned projects focused on exercise, health and sport practices in general and on the University of Illinois campus in particular. This course is connected to the Ethnography of the University Initiative.
Publication Status:unpublished
Peer Reviewed:not peer reviewed
Date Available in IDEALS:2012-07-02

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

  • Diversity on Campus/Equity and Access
    This collection examines ways in which the U.S. university and the American college experience are affected by diversity, and difference. In particular, these student projects examine experiences of diversity on campus, including important contemporary social, cultural, and political debates on equity and access to university resources.

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