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Educational Psychology and Inclusion in Education

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Educational Psychology and
Inclusion in Education
By
Lisa DeSouza
Academic & Professional tutor and Educational
Psychologist
University of Nottingham
December 2005
Aims of Session
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To explore definitions of inclusion and what it
means for the education of children and young
people.
To briefly examine the history of special
education and the move towards inclusion.
To compare and contrast the medical and social
models of disability.
To examine the research evidence in relation to
inclusive education.
To explore how educational psychologists can
contribute to the inclusion of children and young
people in schools.
What is Inclusive Education?
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“Rejecting segregation or exclusion of learners for whatever
reason – ability, gender, language, care status, family
income, disability, sexuality, colour, religion or ethnic origin;
Maximising the participation of all learners in the
community schools of their choice;
Making learning more meaningful and relevant for all,
particularly those learners most vulnerable to exclusionary
pressure;
Rethinking and restructuring policies, curricula, culture and
practices in schools and learning environments so that
diverse learning needs can be met, whatever the origin or
nature of those needs.”
(From British Psychological Society: Inclusive Education Position Paper,
2002:2)
What is Inclusive Education?
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Inclusion means including all children and young
people in their local mainstream school.
Inclusion means young people and adults with
disabilities being included in mainstream society.
Inclusion is an ongoing process.
Inclusive schools help the development of
communities where all people are equally valued
and have the same opportunities for
participation.
Inclusive Education versus Segregated
Education
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Questions have been raised internationally
about the value of segregated education
(i.e. special schools/units etc.)
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Many argue that it encourages prejudice
and discrimination in school and in the
wider society.
Salamanca World Statement
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“Inclusion and participation are essential
to human dignity and to the enjoyment
and exercise of human rights. Within the
field of education this is reflected in the
development of strategies to bring about a
genuine equalisation of opportunity”
(United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO),
1994:11)
History of Special Education
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First special schools set up in UK in 1850s.
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Set up initially to educate children with
hearing or visual impairments only.
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By end of 19th century, big expansion in
special school sector which continued into
the 20th century.
Moving towards Inclusion
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Human Rights movement in the 1960s.
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Changing views on people with disabilities within
the wider society.
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Lack of research evidence about value of special
schools.
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Focusing on similarities between children with
disabilities and other children, rather than
differences.
(Frederickson & Cline, 2002)
The Medical Model of Disability
Child is faulty
Diagnosis
Impairment becomes focus of attention
Assessment, monitoring, programmes of therapy imposed
Segregation and alternative services
�Ordinary’ needs put on hold
Re-entry if �normal’ enough
permanent exclusion
The Social Model of Disability
Child is valued
Strengths and needs defined by self and others
OUTCOME based programme designed
Resources made available to �ordinary services’
Training for parents and professionals
Relationships nurtured
DIVERSITY WELCOMED
Society evolves
Concepts of Special Educational Needs
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Focus on individual differences
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Focus on environmental demands
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Interactional analysis of special
educational needs
(See Frederickson & Cline, 2002)
Inclusive Education and the Research
Evidence
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A wide variety of studies have produced some
consistent results:
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No evidence that segregated education fosters social or
academic progress over mainstream school education.
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Some studies show advantages to inclusive placements
if accompanied by an appropriate individualised
programme.
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Other studies have reported that there is a small to
moderate advantage to inclusion on both social and
academic outcomes.
(See Frederickson & Cline, 2002)
Inclusive Education and the Research
Evidence
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Some research has focused on effect of inclusion
on children without disabilities:
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Evidence suggests that inclusion supported progress of
children without disabilities.
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Inclusion found to have positive impact and facilitates
the education of all children.
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Teacher time not affected by presence of students with
special educational needs
(See Frederickson & Cline, 2002)
Inclusive Education and the Research
Evidence
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Research in this area has been limited.
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Methodological limitations in many of the
studies carried out.
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More research on outcomes of inclusion is
needed.
Components of Effective Inclusive
Education- Research Evidence
Strong visionary leadership
пЃ° Flexible pupil groupings and adaptable
teaching style
пЃ° High expectations for all pupils
пЃ° Collaboration
пЃ° Community and parental involvement
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(See Frederickson & Cline, 2002)
Role of Educational Psychologists and
Inclusion
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Making psychology (knowledge about
human behaviour and learning) available
to schools and all learners.
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Helping schools design appropriate
learning environments for learners with
different learning styles and needs.
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Focusing on the effects of environment
and systems on learning and behaviour.
Role of Educational Psychologists and
Inclusion
Use of psychological skills and consultation
to identify, assess and help resolve
concerns.
пЃ° Using research skills to examine how
learning settings can become more
inclusive.
пЃ° Advocating for children and young people
with disabilities. Enabling voices of the
vulnerable to be heard.
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References
пЃ° Main Texts:
Frederickson, N. and Cline, T. (2002) Special Educational Needs,
Inclusion and Diversity Open University Press
пЃ° Other References:
British Psychological Society (BPS) (2002) Inclusive Education
Position paper www.bps.org.uk
Bunch, G. and Valeo, A. (1997) Inclusion: Recent Research Inclusion
Press
Clark, C., Dyson, A. and Millward, A. (Eds.) (1998) Theorising Special
Education Routledge
Clough, P. and Corbett, J. (2000) Theories of Inclusive Education: A
Students’ Guide London: Chapman
Thomas, G. and Loxley, A. (2001) Deconstructing Special Education
and Constructing Inclusion Open University Press
Thomas, G. and Vaughan, M. (2004) Inclusive Education: Readings
and Reflections Open University Press
References
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Useful Journals:
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Educational Psychology in Practice
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Educational and Child Psychology
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International Journal of Inclusive Education
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