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This chapter explores some of the complexities involved when undertaking research at an international level in the area of “inclusive” education and “special needs”…
This chapter explores some of the complexities involved when undertaking research at an international level in the area of “inclusive” education and “special needs” education. The complexities encountered by researchers working in these fields, mirror many of the challenges that comparativists in education studies find themselves addressing. Drawing from earlier investigations and from reports by international organizations, this chapter highlights some of the dilemmas and challenges that researchers face when considering inclusion and special needs education in different countries. Differing interpretations of “inclusion” are discussed and then contrasted with thinking around “special needs” practices. The chapter moves forward to analyze how the adoption of differing theoretical frameworks can influence the way that “disability” is conceptualized and therefore how inclusive and special needs education are interpreted and then put into practice. The chapter argues that cross-cultural work opens up opportunities for further development and learning in this field. We further argue that such cross-cultural work can become a mechanism to instigate fundamental change in education.
This chapter traces the shift of many progressive educators from a general faith in special education to the more recent push for democratic and ethical inclusive education…
This chapter traces the shift of many progressive educators from a general faith in special education to the more recent push for democratic and ethical inclusive education. This chapter examines the critical scholarship that propelled many educators away from systems of special education and into the inclusive education movement. Two phases in the development of inclusive education are described, an initial failed attempt often described by researchers as “integration,” and the current social movement building toward a more genuine social transformation of classrooms and schools.
This chapter reviews the international literature in order to support ongoing international development work on indicators for measuring inclusive education. Building on…
This chapter reviews the international literature in order to support ongoing international development work on indicators for measuring inclusive education. Building on previous work in this area, this chapter outlines 13 themes in the international literature that should be considered in the development of a set of indicators for measuring inclusive education and has produced one extra thematic area for consideration.
There is a need for a more critical perspective and reporting about the value of taking a model of inclusion developed in western countries and based upon the human rights…
There is a need for a more critical perspective and reporting about the value of taking a model of inclusion developed in western countries and based upon the human rights ethos applying it in developing countries. This chapter will report firstly on how the Index for Inclusion (hereinafter referred to as the Index) was used in Australia as a tool for review and development; and secondly how the process of using the Index is adjusted for use in the Pacific Islands and other developing nations in collaborative and culturally sensitive ways to support and evaluate progress towards inclusive education. Examples are provided from both contexts to demonstrate the impact of the Index as an effective tool to support a more inclusive response to diversity in schools.
This chapter provides an overview of inclusive education, specifically examining conceptualisations of inclusive education and some of the models used to frame an…
This chapter provides an overview of inclusive education, specifically examining conceptualisations of inclusive education and some of the models used to frame an evaluation of the practice. While international human rights agreements, covenants and legislation provide definitions that focus on equity, access, opportunity and rights, inclusive education continues to lack a tight conceptual focus that may contribute to its misconception and often confused practices. In the absence of a unified definition of what inclusion is, attempts to measure or compare such a complex equity issue are challenging. Some promising models do, however, exist and are explored in this chapter.
The purpose of this paper is to explore effects of an intervention designed for teachers' learning. This study investigates the effectiveness of a three-session…
The purpose of this paper is to explore effects of an intervention designed for teachers' learning. This study investigates the effectiveness of a three-session professional development (PD) program based on the lesson study methodology. Lesson study was chosen as an intervention, attempting to strengthen teachers' awareness of and readiness to teach for student diversity.
This study included 26 participants. The teachers took part in lesson study cycles during a period of four months. Effectiveness was measured using a pre-test/post-test within-subject design. The broad concept of inclusion and the characteristics of the research questions in this study demanded a mix of methods, a design in which qualitative and quantitative data are collected in parallel, analyzed separately and then merged.
Results show an increase of teachers' readiness from baseline to post measurement to adjust the learning environment for increased inclusivity. The largest increase (88%) was seen in the themes in teachers' responses regarding accommodations for a student with special needs. Regarding self-perceived ability, the average increase was 50%. Results show significant changes in teachers' adjustment awareness ability.
This study contributes to educational research, as the focus is PD for general teachers. PD opportunities with teaching strategies related to special needs (e.g. neurodevelopmental conditions, NDCs) are seldom offered to general education teachers. Support from teachers is a key strategy for accommodating students with special needs in mainstream classrooms. Furthermore, there is a lack of literature of interventions aiming to improve teachers' readiness and preparedness for students with NDCs in mainstream settings.
This chapter will address four key areas related to resourcing inclusive education. Consideration will be given first to an international perspective on models of funding, reviewing direct or student-based approaches, and decentralized versus local organization of funding. The relationships between funding and implementation of inclusive education will then be explored, looking at ways of measuring these using indicators or protocols. Third, continuous improvement, planning, and accountability will be reviewed for their role in setting priorities, targets, and benchmarking progress while addressing competing resource needs. Finally, approaches to building capacity to support inclusive practice through a range of approaches will be proffered.
This chapter discusses the significance of Sally Tomlinson’s article, The Irresistible Rise of Special Education and of her sociological thinking more generally. The…
This chapter discusses the significance of Sally Tomlinson’s article, The Irresistible Rise of Special Education and of her sociological thinking more generally. The paradox highlighted in the Tomlinson’s article, that is, the constantly evolving expansion, globally, of special education, alongside a simultaneous growth in support for the idea of inclusive education, is discussed in this chapter. Tomlinson’s influence on the sociological direction of Julie Allan’s work is traced and exemplified, and the continuing tensions in inclusive education are explored.
This paper aims to briefly describe the experiences from the design, development and implementation of a(n) (assistive) technology course in a postgraduate programme for a…
This paper aims to briefly describe the experiences from the design, development and implementation of a(n) (assistive) technology course in a postgraduate programme for a Master's in special/inclusive education.
Data presented in the paper are collected documents' study, and specifically from students' assignments and final exams, with the consent of the students involved. Considerations and thoughts of the paper are based on students' work, feedback and expectations as well as the expectations of the university with respect to the programme's aims.
Findings of this review suggest that, even though the programme described does not yet have a long history in inclusive technology, it offers the potential for considerable benefits for the change in the state of mind of postgraduate students in relation to technology and disability. Theoretical background is vital in order to re‐form students' thinking, but at the same time, it seems that there is a need to provide students with opportunities to apply their knowledge in real settings, with responsibilities for technology applications for all learners.
The paper offers an important insight into the considerations and progress in designing a new course related to technology and disability with an emphasis on inclusive education and not technology per se.