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Specific initiatives currently promoted at the OSD

Current initiatives

The OSD, at various stages in the year, embarks on specific initiatives that are not student specific but aim to bring about innovation, change, awareness and a promotion of diversity on campus.  This page will showcase some of these efforts and allow students to participate in specific projects which may be close to their hearts.

Rathlyn Lecture

Each year, the OSD invites a guest speaker to McGill to promote the importance of Disabilities Studies as a field.  The lecture also aims to raise awareness about a specific aspect of Disabilities Studies or to trigger a thought provoking process around the Social Model of Disability.        

Professor John Visser, renowned UK scholar in the area of Social, Emotional and Behaviour Difficulties (SEBD) will encourage us to rethink the way we see and talk about ADHD. Join us for the 4th Rathlyn Lecture on Disabilities Studies on November 4th!

4th Rathlyn Lecture on Disability poster


Professor John Visser is Visiting Professor at the University of Northampton having retired in 2010 from the University of Birmingham where he was programme tutor for professional development courses in the area of social, emotional and behavioural difficulties at undergraduate, post graduate and doctoral levels. He is a consultant to schools, services and Local Authorities nationally and internationally in the area of special education. Recently he is has been working in Norway, Denmark, Georgia  and India on projects related to policies, practice and provision for children and young people with special educational needs in mainstream and specialist provision. He is widely known for his professionally relevant research and staff development work on classroom management; special educational needs, pupils with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties; teaching and learning, particularly differentiation A founder of NASEN he served in a variety of national offices (including President) over a 25 year period, he also served as treasurer to the Association of Workers for Children with Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties and the European Association of Special Education. He was the first non-American President of the Council for Exceptional Children’s Division of International Special Educators. He has served as Chair of North Somerset’s Strategic School’s Forum and their Children’s Trust. He has been a Trustee of the Social Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties Association, Visiting Fellow at University College Nordjylland, Denmark and a member of the Education Board for the Diocese of Bristol.


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Outreach Campaign

The OSD has designed an Outreach campaign to create awareness about invisible disabilities and services in place for "emerging clienteles".  The campaign focuses on Learning Disabilities, AD/HD, ASD and Mental Health issues.  The posters have been displayed in all McGill residences from August 15th.

For copies of the posters, pelase contact patricia [dot] diazdelcastillo [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Patricia Diaz del Castillo).

ADHD outreach poster   

ASD outreach poster

Learning Disabilities poster

Mental Health outreach poster

Universal Design Workshop for Students

The OSD is offering students, several times a semester, workshops on Universal Design.  These workshops are available, in various formats, to faculty and McGill employees but it seems essential and rather critical to involve the main stakeholders in the process of promoting Universal Design on campus.  The workshops will be offered from September, through the term, on both campuses.  In order to register, simply complete the registration form which appears in the "Forms" section in the left margin.

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