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2023/24 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

OSSP5100M Disability and Inequality

15 creditsClass Size: 50

Module manager: Dr Hannah Morgan

Taught: 1 Mar to 30 Apr, 1 Sep to 31 Oct View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Students are required to meet the programme entry requirements prior to studying the module.

Module replaces


This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

This module introduces students to the nature and lived experience of disability inequalities in contemporary global contexts. Taking as its starting point the concepts of equality and inequality, it considers the differing ways these and related concepts like justice, fairness and entitlement are articulated and applied in relation to disability. This module provides a foundational knowledge for identifying, resisting, challenging and reworking definitions and classifications of disability and of disabling barriers and practices they are explored in greater depth in subsequent modules.


This foundational module examines the nature and operation of disability inequalities in contemporary global contexts and how they are experienced, defined, measured and explained by a variety of actors. Students will develop a critical awareness of the range of contexts in which disability inequalities operate, the disadvantages they cause and the social, political, cultural, economic and institutional factors that create and perpetuate them.

This module provides a foundational knowledge for identifying, resisting, challenging and reworking definitions and classifications of disability and of disabling barriers and practices that are explored in greater depth in subsequent modules.

Learning outcomes
Upon successful completion of this module students will be able to:

1.Demonstrate a critical understanding of conceptualisations of equality and inequality and related concepts (such as justice, fairness and entitlement) and relate them to the experiences of disabled people;
2. Analyse and critically evaluate the ways in which social, political, cultural, economic and institutional factors create and perpetuate disablism and disablement;
3. Investigate and critically analyse disability inequalities in differing contexts;
4. Demonstrate a sound understanding of how and why disability intersects with a range of other identities and characteristics and how this varies by circumstance;
5. Communicate knowledge and ideas effectively in accessible and inclusive ways.


The module addresses the theoretical and conceptual basis for identifying and understanding disability inequalities focusing on process and experiences of disablism and disablement. It will consider the ways in which concepts like in/equality, justice, fairness, entitlement and desert are applied and practiced in relation to disability and disabled people. It also considers the ways in which a range of factors, including social, political, cultural, economic and institutional barriers create and perpetuate disadvantage and inequality in the lives of disabled people. Furthermore, it will explore the ways in which other identifies and characteristics intersect with disability.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
On-line Learning61.006.00
Discussion forum62.0012.00
Independent online learning hours42.00
Private study hours90.00
Total Contact hours18.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Independent online learning refers to non-facilitated directed learning. Students will work through bespoke interactive learning resources and reflective activities in the VLE.

Private study refers to directed reading and other activities including self-directed research in support of learning activities and discussions, as well as in preparation for and production of assessments.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

The structured online learning approach will guide students through the key learning content and through the stages of an active learning cycle, allowing space for experience, reflection, analysis, and practice.

Through engaging with independent and private study materials students will develop an insight into core issues in the module such as how concepts like in/equality, justice and fairness are used to frame, explain and justify the lived experience of disabled people.

Through their studies students will be able to appreciate and discuss the need for conceptual tools to understand and critique disability inequality and to understand the implications of different definitions and classifications of disability.

The module materials and interactions will provide students with the skills and knowledge to critique established theories, concepts and practices. This critical appraisal will contribute toward the successful production of a case study report. The module’s digital learning materials provide regular opportunities for students to check their understanding and gain feedback eg case studies with short answer questions and automated feedback.

The webinars and discussion forums provide opportunities for formative feedback from peers and tutors.

Scaffolding assessment focused exercises are incorporated into select units, with these exercises designed to specifically help students work on, reflect and progress with the module assessment.

The case study report will enable student progress to be monitored and summative feedback provided.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Case StudyUDL options for submission see below*100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

This is a case study report where students identify an area of disability inequality to critically consider, with reference to intersectionality. *Students can select to submit this assessment as either: a/ Written report (3,000 word limit) b/ Presentation (20 minute recorded presentation or script 3,000 words, with or without PowerPoint or alternative). NB this has been designed to reduce the requirement for individual reasonable adjustments.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 28/04/2023 14:57:09


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