Inclusivity is one form of educational integrity that is enshrined as an abiding principle in higher education irrespective of mode of delivery or educational program. In course provision, it might take the form of providing equal access to diverse groups of learners. In on-campus contexts, systems are in place to ensure (not unproblematically) that inclusivity is practised. Distance learners, because of their various commitments and the diverse competence and skills they bring to their studies, are a highly heterogeneous group. ‘Inclusivity’ in this context could have different meanings. In the present paper, we interpret the term ‘inclusivity’ to mean greater access and support to students, regardless of their learning contexts. In order to explore ways of enabling access to academic learning support we have explored the ODL literature to uncover how academic support services are envisioned in the literature (if at all), and to imagine how an academic learning support initiative within a program/subject might be conceived to contribute to better outcomes for online distance students.
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