Marianne Björn Milrad har gjort en kartläggning av hur det ser ut på svenska högskolor när det gäller stöd till studenter med funktionsnedsättning. Titeln på hennes avhandling är "Studenter med läs- och skrivsvårigheter i högre utbildning".
The emphasis on higher education (HE) in today's knowledge society has increased the amount of students enrolled in universities in Sweden. Two percent of these students are people with disabilities, of whom more than half are students with dyslexia.
Dyslexia is a disability that involves difficulty with written text which is the essence of HE. The disability affects these students' reading and my assumption was therefore that their possibility to complete their education on an equal footing with their peers was limited. The overall aim of this thesis is to illuminate the prerequisites for participation for Swedish students with dyslexia in higher education, and to analyse if support, and information about support, offered by higher-education institutions are accessible to them.
Due to lack of previous research, this is a descriptive study using the theoretical framework of cultural-historical activity theory (CHAT), a theory that can be summarized in five principles: an activity system is the unit of analysis, it has historicity, multi-voicedness, it views contradictions as sources of change, and it has the potential for expansive transformation. To orient myself within the large field of HE and dyslexia, the following questions have guided my work: What HE measures are taken to ensure accessibility and participation for Swedish students with dyslexia? What tensions, as defined within CHAT, may be found in the HE activities in relation to students with dyslexia? Is there a possibility for expansive transformation? In order to answer these questions, I have listened to some of the voices within HE, by collecting data through a questionnaire sent to all coordinators for students with disabilities; by having focus group interviews with university teachers, as well as having individual interviews with students with dyslexia. The data were collected and analysed within a CHAT activity system, which depicted HE activities by coordinators and teachers in relation to students with dyslexia. The graph was used in the final discussion to formulate some ideas for expansive transformation.