04 SES 07 C, Student Attitudes towards Inclusion
During the past few years, the adoption of inclusive policies to educate children with additional support needs became an almost worldwide trend. One key factor for successful school inclusion is an enabling social environment, which includes the predominance of positive attitudes regarding students who have disabilities (Pijl, Meijer, & Hegarty, 1997). Within inclusive contexts, children without disabilities have multiple opportunities to interact with their peers with disabilities (Favazza et al., 2000). However, research data show that, unless given encouragement by adults, typically developing peers (TDP) commonly do not establish spontaneous interactions with children with disabilities (Frea, Craig-Unkefer, Odom, & Johnson, 1999). Negative attitudes are associated with an increased risk for social exclusion and bullying experienced by children with disabilities (Tavares, 2011). Furthermore, these children seem unmotivated for learning and they report feelings of being lonely and isolated in their classes (Tavares, 2011).
To address this issue, several initiatives have been taken to modify TDP’s attitudes towards their peers with disabilities through the implementation of disability awareness programmes (e.g., Ison et al., 2010). The premise for developing disability awareness programmes is that negative attitudes stem from the lack of experience and knowledge about disability (Ajzen, 2005). By intervening to increase knowledge and perceptions of disabilities it is expected that TDP’s attitudes may be improved, favouring, as a parallel effect, the participation of students with disabilities in educational contexts (King et al., 2003). Common elements of interventions include breaking down stereotypes and raising awareness of the challenges encountered by people with disabilities in everyday living (Lindsay & Edwards, 2013).
Disability awareness programmes can assume different structures and forms to promote changes in attitudes – demonstrating different levels of empirical support – in terms of the strategies and techniques used, the population addressed, the data analyses carried out and the evaluation methods used. A systematic review of 63 studies in this area found that contact with people with disabilities is the most often used technique to promote attitudinal changes (García et al., 2009). However, interventions based on “contact” strategies must fulfil basic conditions, such as the participation of children with and without disabilities in joint and non-competitive activities with pursuance of common goals (Allport, 1954). Research has evaluated other types of interventions based on providing information and knowledge about disabilities (e.g. Tavares, 2011) and on facilitating opportunities to experience challenges imposed to children with disabilities during daily routines through simulation techniques (Hurst et al., 2012). These interventions generally obtain good results, notwithstanding some authors describing that the use of these techniques alone does not result in attitude change (e.g. Krahé & Altwasser, 2006). A combined approach merging the promotion of positive contact experiences with the provision of information and knowledge about disabilities seems to receive more empirical support (Lindsay & Edwards, 2013). Further to the type of intervention, methods used to evaluate programmes’ effectiveness have been under debate, with recommendations to complement information collected through self-report measures with behavioural observations of children interactions in order to determine to which extent attitudes translate into actual behaviour (e.g. Martinez & Carspecken, 2007).
Our study evaluates whether a multi-component disability awareness programme is effective at promoting positive attitudes of typically developing students towards their peers with disabilities.
Allport, G. W. (1954). The nature of prejudice. Cambridge, MA: Perseus Books Alves, S. & Lopes-dos-Santos, P. (2013, September). Measuring Students’ Attitudes Towards Peers with Disabilities Using a Portuguese Version of the CATCH Scale. Paper presented at European Conference on Educational Research 2013 “Creativity and Innovation in Educational Research”, Istanbul. Abstract retrieved from http://www.eera-ecer.de/ecer-programmes/conference/8/contribution/22467/ Ajzen, I. (2005). Attitudes, Personality and Behavior (2nd ed.). New York: Open University Press. Favazza, P. C., Phillipsen, L., & Kumar, P. (2000). Measuring and Promoting Acceptance of Young Children with Disabilities. Exceptional Children, 66(4), 491-508. Frea, W., Craig-Unkefer, L., Odom, S., & Johnson, D. (1999). Differential effects of structured social integration and group friendship activities for promoting social interaction with peers. Journal of Early Intervention, 22, 230-242. García, M. A. F., Díaz, A. L. A., & Rodríguez, M. A. A. (2009). A review and analysis of programmes promoting changes in attitudes towards people with disabilities. Annuary of Clinical and Health Psychology, 5, 81-94. Hurst, C., Corning, K., & Ferrante, R. (2012). Children’s Acceptance of Others with Disability: The Influence of a Disability-Simulation Program. Journal of Genetic Counseling, 21(6), 873-883. Ison, N., McIntyre, S., Rothery, S., Smithers-Sheedy, H., Goldsmith, S., Parsonage, S., & Foy, L. (2010). 'Just like you': a disability awareness programme for children that enhanced knowledge, attitudes and acceptance: pilot study findings. Dev Neurorehabil, 13(5), 360-368. King, G., Law, M., King, S., Rosenbaum, P., Kertoy, M. K., & Young, N. L. (2003). A Conceptual Model of factors affecting the recreation and leisure. Physical & Occupational Therapy In Pediatrics, 23(1), 63-90. Krahé, B., & Altwasser, C. (2006). Changing negative attitudes towards persons with physical disabilities: an experimental intervention. Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology, 16(1), 59-69. Lindsay, S., & Edwards, A. (2013). A systematic review of disability awareness interventions for children and youth. Disabil Rehabil, 35(8), 623-646. Martinez, R. S., & Carspecken, P. (2007). Effectiveness of a Brief Intervention on Latino Children's Social Acceptance of Peers with Special Needs. Journal of Applied School Psychology, 23(1), 97-115. Pijl, S. J., Meijer, C. J., & Hegarty, S. (1997). Inclusive Education: A Global Agenda. London: Routledge. Tavares, W. (2011). An evaluation of the Kids are Kids disability awareness program: increasing social inclusion among children with physical disabilities. J Soc Work Disabil Rehabil, 10(1), 25-35.
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
The programme is updated regularly (each day in the morning)
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.