Equal opportunities in teaching

KI strives to be an inclusive and welcoming university. It is therefore important that all students can benefit from education in the best way regardless of their sex, transgender identity or expression, sexuality, ethnicity, skin color, religion, age, disability or socioeconomic background.

Education lecture student
Photo: GettyImages.

KI shall offer a study environment that is free from harassment and violations where students have equal opportunities to develop. KI's education shall also learn the students about gender, power and equal opportunities to give them enough qualifications to provide equal health care. 

By developing one’s teaching and by including equal opportunities, the diversity that exists in student groups and working life is reflected, which makes students more prepared for their professional life. One can also create a learning environment where everyone can participate and are included. What is the difference between inclusive and accessible teaching?

Inclusive teaching means to:

  • design one's teaching so that it includes more perspectives in terms of content than those that are normative
  • work with the content and implementation of the teaching so that the students feel included regardless of their background, position, or lifestyle
  • Inclusive teaching can also be called norm-critical or norm-breaking teaching

Accessible teaching means to:

  • carry out teaching so that it is accessible to as many people as possible
  • follow the recommendations for students who need special measures for them to be able to benefit from the teaching

Norm critical perspectives 

Those who live relatively normatively rarely notice norms because they are represented everywhere in society, more easily get work, are listened to, etc. Those who does not fit into norms notices them, among other things, by being invisible, extra visible, harassed or discriminated against. Invisibility is relatively common in teaching because one's living conditions and position are not represented. If all the research and examples in teaching concern white heterosexual cis men and cis women from the middle class, several perspectives regarding the content and implementation of teaching are missed. 

The integration of equal opportunities in teaching may be about investigating how gender, sexuality and/or disability affect public health or pregnancy. In the learning environment, equal opportunities can be about creating an inclusive environment for students regardless of their origin, class background or age. Integration of equal opportunities means everything from the subject being represented to that it permeates the curriculum.  


Checklist for an including and accessible teaching 

  • Always use a microphone when there is one 
  • Always face the participants when speaking 
  • Give the participants clear verbal and written instructions  
  • Vary your examination forms 
  • Use an inclusive language 
  • Problematise norms 
  • Make power and privilege visible 
  • Vary your examples to include more categories 
  • Do not assume a “we” in teaching where you talk about others  
  • Respond to violations  
  • Question stereotypes 
  • Distribute speech consciously 
  • Acknowledge your students equally 
  • Set rules for seminars 
  • Vary the division of labour in group work/laboratory work 

♦ Challenge yourself:

  • Choose at least 3 activities and try them out, then reflect and evaluate.
  • Check out what you're already doing and consider whether you can further develop your ways to inclusion.

Literature about pedagogy 

Norm-critical pedagogy. An opportunity for a change in teaching. Bromseth, Janne & Sörensdotter, Renita. 2012. Gender Studies Education and  pedagogy. Ed by. Lundberg & Werner. Göteborg: Nationella sekretariatet för genusforskning. You can access the article online

Könsmedveten pedagogik: konkreta tips och övningar för lärare. Carstensen, Gunilla.2006. Uppsala: Uppsala universitet. Avdelningen för utveckling av pedagogik och interaktivt lärande. You can access the article online

Undervisa tillgängligt! Pedagogiska strategier för att funktionsnedsättning hos studenter inte skall vara ett hinder för att genomföra studierna. Henriksson, Ann-Sofie. 2012. Uppsala: Uppsala universitet, Avdelningen för universitetspedagogisk utveckling. You can access the article online

Normkritisk pedagogik – för den högre utbildningen. Kalonaityté, Viktorija. 2014.Lund: Studentlitteratur.

Troubling education. Queer activism and antioppressive pedagogy. Kumashiro, Kevin. 2002. New York: Routledge. 

Critical pedagogy in health education. Matthews, Catherine. 2014.. Health Education Journal. 73(5): 600-609. 

From political correctness to reflexivity. A norm-critical perspective on nursing education. Tengelin, Ellinor, Elisabeth Dahlborg, Ina Berndtsson & Pia H. Bülow. 2020. Nursing Inquiry. 27: e12344. 

♦ Want to learn more? Check available norm critical literature at KI Library



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Klara Regnö