GS 420: Disability & Society
Assignment #4: Project
Suggested Interview Guidelines
The purpose of this assignment is to act as an “ally” to reduce “ableism”. In order to understand the impact that “ableism” has on an individual, it is beneficial to learn first hand about the kinds of prejudice and discrimination that people with disabilities face. A person with a disability is the real expert on the issues that affect their lives. After considering their experiences, it is then that you become aware of your own role in promoting disability rights – even if it means facing your own subtle beliefs of discrimination.
The interview process should focus on the experiences of the person with the disability. By educating yourself, and by your willingness to learn from someone with an experience of disability, you can align yourself with the community of people with disabilities so that needed change can occur.
The interview process should focus on the individual first and the disability experience second. By staying focused on the individual, you affirm their need for respect, equal treatment, and the right to access societal opportunities without experiencing discrimination.
This interview should be a full 3-5 pages long, double spaced. The interview is easiest to read if written in a narrative format. (Just tell the story). Confidentiality is important, so initials, or first name only is appropriate.
- Ask the person to tell their story – their history… where they were born, their family situation, educational experiences, adulthood goals, and current living situations.
- Ask the person about their experiences in society – have they experienced any challenges in accomplishing their goals. What about education? Have they ever been discriminated against? Talk to the individual about Americans with Disabilities Act. Are they aware of their rights?
- If appropriate and the person wants to share details about their specific disability, include that information. If they would prefer to not give you specifics of the disability in a medical context, then be respectful and stick to the societal responses to their situation. Focus on the strengths of the individual and their attitudes towards their experiences. Find out what changes can be made to improve their life.
- At the end of the write-up, reflect on your own personal response to this experience. Reflect on any biased beliefs of which you were made aware. How can you become an ally to make the changes needed for this person to live a full and successful life?
- Finally, include at least two concepts from GS 420 to this experience. For example: Did you use any of the “10 Commandments” when interacting with this individual? If so, state the commandment and how you applied it during this experience.
Interviews, Agency Visitations, and “Other” options:
0-5 points each item
__________ 1. Assignment is a full 3-5 pages in length.
__________ 2. Definitions, medical information and other resources utilized and included in your write-up includes citation information.
__________ 3. Writing quality is exemplary with no corrections needed (including using person-first language)
__________ 4. Includes information related to course (Ten Commandments used, issues or topics previously addressed in class, packet information, references to presenters, etc.)
__________ 5. Includes a personal response to the project experience.
___________ Total Points (25)