Date of Award

5-2018

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

First Advisor

Jennifer Putnam

Abstract

This study was an investigation of co-teaching and inclusion practices at the secondary level. In the explanatory sequential mixed-methods study, regular education co-teachers as well as special education co-teachers offered insights by their participation in a survey and focus groups. This study investigated co-teacher perceptions of inclusion and how their perceptions of inclusion and co-teaching influenced the extent of teacher use of elements of Dr. Friend’s co-teaching models. The study also investigated and identified the needs of co-teachers. Co-teaching is defined as “two or more professionals delivering substantive instruction to a diverse, or blended, group of students in a single space” (Cook & Friend, 1995, p. 1). The development and implementation of co-teaching came as a response to the 1990 revision of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the requirement that students be educated in the Least Restrictive Environment (Shoulders & Krei, 2016). Co-teaching has allowed students with disabilities the opportunity to be supported by an additional teacher as they are educated in regular education classrooms alongside their typically developing peers (Hang & Rabren, 2009). If teacher attitudes and perceptions in the area of inclusion and co-teaching can be identified and articulated and those perceptions can be brought to the attention of principals and district personnel, the learning and instruction of all students in inclusion classrooms may be impacted. This study found that both regular and special education co-teachers had a favorable view of co-teaching and inclusion. They agreed that it is effective, and co-teaching provided more instructional intensity than teaching alone. This study also found that while One Teach/One Assist was the most used co-teaching model, Team Teaching was identified as the most ideal model for effective co-teaching. In addition, co-teachers cited content knowledge of co-teachers, compatibility of co-teachers, common planning, positive perspectives of inclusion, and training as needs for successful co-teaching.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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