Honors College Theses

Date

2021

Major

Elementary Education (B.S.Ed.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Catherine Howerter

Abstract

Pre-service teachers majoring in elementary education generally have few opportunities to teach students with disabilities. This research addressed the question “How do newly qualified general elementary education teachers perceive their preparedness to teach in inclusive settings?” The goal of this study was to discover what areas new teachers need to become more proficient in order to successfully teach within inclusive classrooms. The topics explored include perceived preparedness for teaching in inclusive settings, ways to measure preparedness, current approaches in teaching within the inclusive settings and strategies for preparing preservice teachers. Using a qualitative narrative design, five newly qualified elementary inclusion teachers were interviewed, the interviews were later transcribed and coded to create common themes between participants. The results of this study indicated that newly qualified teachers felt they would be better prepared to teach in inclusive settings if there was more special education coursework and hands-on experiences in placements. The results from this research can be used to reform curriculum or requirements for preservice teachers in the coming years.

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