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Student Teachers' Perceptions about Inclusive Classroom Teaching in Northern Ireland Prior to Teaching Practice Experience

Lambe, Jacqueline and Bones, Robert (2006) Student Teachers' Perceptions about Inclusive Classroom Teaching in Northern Ireland Prior to Teaching Practice Experience. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 21 (2). pp. 167-186. [Journal article]

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DOI: 10.1080/008856250600600828


This paper seeks to obtain the views of student teachers in Northern Ireland as to the benefits andchallenges of inclusive education and the key issues that may need to be addressed to ensure theybecome effective teachers in an inclusive classroom. Because of the system of academic selectionthat has prevailed in Northern Ireland, issues relating to inclusion have been difficult to resolvemainly because principles of inclusion are at odds with existing structures. By 2008, however, academicselection is to be set aside and it would seem reasonable to believe that more inclusive practices will be adopted by all schools. Positive attitudes towards inclusion by practitioners will beessential in ensuring successful implementation. The majority of students entering Initial Teacher Education (ITE) programmes in Northern Ireland have been traditionally drawn from the academicgrammar school sector where classroom contact with pupils who have diverse special educationalneeds may have been minimal. The results of this study show that while many student teachersclaim to support inclusive policies, they believe that lack of appropriate preparation, concerns aboutclass size, resources, managing other adults and coping with increasing numbers of pupils with diversespecial educational needs are the key issues to be addressed within ITE in advance of the radicalchanges planned. Despite claiming to support inclusion, substantial numbers did not believethe removal of academic selection was the best way to ensure equality of provision for all pupils.

Item Type:Journal article
Keywords:Inclusion; SEN, student teachers; teaching practice
Faculties and Schools:Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Education
Research Institutes and Groups:Psychology Research Institute > Behavioural Neuroscience and Behaviour Analysis
Institute for Research in Social Sciences > Education
Psychology Research Institute
Institute for Research in Social Sciences
ID Code:9633
Deposited By: Dr Jacqueline Lambe
Deposited On:27 Jan 2010 17:15
Last Modified:17 Oct 2017 15:45

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