- ItemA journal content analysis of the concept of inclusion in Inclusive education(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-03) Haywood, Vanessa; Carolissen, Ronelle; Ste;llenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Dept. of Educational Psychology.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The interpretation of ‘inclusive education’ and what inclusion means has become a contested term. There are a variety of definitions used by different authors since the phenomenon was discussed at the World Conference on Special Needs Education held in Salamanca, Spain in 1994. The Salamanca Statement, which was signed by 92 countries, promotes the idea that schools with an inclusive orientation are ‘the most effective strategy of combating discriminatory attitudes, creating welcoming communities, building an inclusive society and achieving education for all’. This study was part of a larger study that investigated the most recent published research on inclusion in educational contexts in a set of 15 selected well-established English journals. This study employed content analysis and used a qualitative research approach to determine how researchers conceptualise the concepts of ‘inclusion’ and ‘inclusive education’. It does this by exploring the content and method trends in articles published in the International Journal of Inclusive Education between 2016 and 2018. The International Journal of Inclusive Education was chosen because it is a defining journal in this field. Furthermore, it has a very high rate of publishing articles that focus on inclusion and inclusive education as well as being the only peer-reviewed journal that includes the term ‘inclusive education’ in its title. The findings in this study reaffirm that research in inclusive education is still highly focused on inclusion as concerned with disability and special education needs while low priority is attributed to issues of difference and diversity.
- ItemThe lived experienced of learners recognised for achieving despite difficult circumstances(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-03) De Mink, Samantha; Swart, Estelle; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Dept. of Educational Psychology.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The award for achieving despite difficult circumstances is a special award presented to a secondary school learner during a formal academic prize-giving ceremony. Although the citations may differ, the act of recognising learners who have had to overcome great adversity during an academic year is common practice across several schools in South Africa. Research was undertaken to understand the experience of the learners who have been recipients of this special award. This study considers inclusive education as an expression of social justice as it considers how interactions between the learner and a secondary school system influence their sense of belonging, and reviews what is considered acceptable inclusive practice, especially when acknowledging differences. The theoretical and methodological principles of case study and interpretative phenomenology within a qualitative methodology are utilised as a framework to guide this research. Data was gathered through narrative accounts and semi-structured interviews, which were analysed utilising tenets of interpretative phenomenological analysis and thematic analysis; thus, an analytic pluralistic approach was adopted to yield an in-depth and rich understanding of the learners’ experiences. Research findings indicated that for some of the participants, being recognised for achieving despite difficult circumstances held great value, while leaving others with feelings of shame and a sense that they had been highlighted as different from their peers. The findings also offered insight as to how secondary schools potentially alienate learners when there is too much emphasis placed on academic competitiveness, and where not enough opportunity exists for learners to experience recognition outside of formal award ceremonies.
- ItemFull-service school teachers’ experiences of support(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-03) Van Zyl, Maria Susana (Marié); Dreyer, Lorna; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Dept. of Educational Psychology.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Although inclusive education policy has been established with the aim of providing equal opportunities for children with special educational needs and disabilities in South Africa, there are still concerns about how possible it is to make this a reality. Concerns and objections by educators about inclusion are primarily based on the diversity of learning disabilities, their lack of confidence in teaching in an inclusive environment and the support they receive regarding teaching in identified inclusive schools. There is a need to promote inclusive education for children with learning barriers. One way to support this effort is to ensure that teachers are well-trained enough to support these learners in established full-service schools and other inclusive institutions. This study's research methodology can be described as basic qualitative research embedded within an interpretive paradigm. To select six participants for the research, purposive sampling was used. Two methods of data collection were used. They consisted of semi-structured individual online interviews and an online focus group discussion. To analyse the data, qualitative content analysis was used. Four interconnected themes emerged from this analysis. These themes relate to teachers' perceptions of their own role as implementers of inclusive education in full-service schools, the self-efficiency of teachers in finding solutions to challenges they face, their knowledge of inclusive education through in-service training, and how they experience in-service training provided to them. The results revealed that teachers need help with knowledge and skills regarding assessment differentiation. It is therefore suggested that the school management teams, and district staff provide teachers with more intensive training and the necessary tools to ensure that learners experience success rather than failure during their school careers.
- ItemPerceptions of teachers from an international school on the inclusion of learners with autism(2023-03) Pienaar, Sharon; Dreyer, L. M.; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Dept. of Educational Psychology.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: There has been a move toward inclusivity in education and psychology, and many policies have been implemented to create inclusive spaces over the past couple of years. Inclusive education is the practice of including learners from various backgrounds and abilities in the classroom, including learners with autism. With the move toward inclusion and the increase in the number of learners with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) entering the general classroom, it was important to understand teachers’ perceptions of the inclusion of learners with autism. Teachers play a vital role in implementing inclusion; therefore, their stories are highly valued in understanding inclusion in schools. This study, therefore, sought to explore teachers’ perceptions of the inclusion of learners with ASD from an international school. This research was conducted using a qualitative interpretivist paradigm to gain in-depth data to answer the research questions. The research question that guided this study was: What are teachers in an international school’s experiences regarding learners with ASD in the mainstream classroom? Purposive sampling was used to select the five participants who participated in this study to answer the above research question and sub-questions. The data collection methods used were open-ended questionnaires followed by a focus group discussion to triangulate the data. Thematic analysis was utilised to make sense of the data and report findings. The themes that emerged from this study were: perceptions of inclusive education, challenges with the inclusion of learners with ASD, creating an inclusive environment and the support needed to create an inclusive school. The results indicated that teachers generally have a positive perception of inclusion, but more support is needed for inclusion to come to fruition. It is recommended that schools and teachers engage in in-depth professional development regarding the inclusion of learners with ASD that frequent multi-disciplinary meetings occur, and that teachers with learners on the spectrum are supported through collaborative practices. Most importantly, it is vital that school management drives this inclusion for policy to come into practice.
- ItemExploring the phenomenon of ephemeral social media stories amongst adolescents(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-03) Radmore, Aletta Sophia (Alé); Conradie, Karlien; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Dept. of Educational Psychology.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study explored the role of social media stories, and the ephemeral nature thereof, in adolescent development. Social media stories are a relatively new phenomenon in the social media world, originating on different social media platforms like Instagram and Snapchat from 2015 onwards. Various studies have explored the role or effect of social media on adolescent development. However, the existing research does not address this new feature on social media, self-destructing social media stories, and the resultant role it plays in the developmental phase of adolescence. Adolescents are faced with various opportunities and vulnerabilities in this critical phase of their development. In this study, the experiences of adolescents in social media stories with the opportunities and vulnerabilities pertinent in this developmental phase were explored and compared. The developmental theories of adolescence based on developmental domains (physical, social, emotional, cognitive and neuro-developmental) were applied as a theoretical lens for the study. This study aimed to extend the research on social media stories by attempting to gain a greater understanding of the adolescents’ experience of the phenomenon through a developmental lens. A qualitative, interpretive approach was followed to understand adolescents' experiences while using social media stories. Purposive sampling in the form of a three-tiered sampling process was used to identify the most suitable research participants. Multiple data-collection methods were intertwined with the sampling process, including electronic questionnaires, a diary entry, semi-structured narrative interviews, field notes, and a thorough literature review. A dual approach of analysis involving thematic analysis and narrative analysis was utilised to analyse the data. Thematic analysis was applied to all the research questions. Furthermore, the study involved narrative analysis in the form of ‘re-storying’ the positive and negative experiences with social media stories that the adolescent participants had had. A combined narrative was employed to deepen insight into the phenomenon of their experiences, and to allow readers to make their own assumptions. The role of social media stories in this study was explored by considering the adolescents’ use of social media stories, analysing their positive and negative experiences with the feature, investigating its relevance to the domains of adolescent development, and identifying potential support structures for their engagement with social media stories. Positive experiences were mostly related to the social domain and negative experiences to the cognitive and emotional domains. The potential permanence of impermanence is highlighted by considering the less ephemeral role the phenomena could play in adolescent development by means of negative internal experiences or positive external experiences.