04 SES 06 E, Potentials And Trends Of Inclusive Education: Comparing European Perspectives
Since the UN-Convention on the rights of people with disabilities, questions concerning the joint education of students with and without special educational needs still remain to be unanswered. Closely associated with this circumstance, pre-service and in-service teachers’ education and training should be reconsidered. In this regard, prerequisites for a better understanding of successful teachers’ strategies for managing heterogeneity in the inclusive classrooms must be investigated. In the recent years, several studies were carried out concerning teachers’ handling with children’s individual learning capabilities in inclusive education. In most of the studies, the ‘Theory of Planned Behaviour’ (Ajzen, 1991) was taken into account in order to verify determinants of teachers’ behaviour in the inclusive classroom. Based on his ‘Theory of Planned Behavior’, it is assumed that teachers’ intentions regarding inclusive education can be predicted by their attitudes towards inclusion, their self-efficacy beliefs as well as their perceived school managements’ expectations. Furthermore, teachers’ everyday practices in inclusive education are explained by their self-efficacy beliefs and their intentions. At this point, self-efficacy beliefs are understood as the perceived ability of oneself in regard to achieve specific aims (Bandura, 1997). The term attitude is defined as “a psychological tendency that is expressed by evaluating a particular entity with some degree of favour or disfavour” (Eagly & Chaiken, 1993, p. 1).
In the recent years, the ‘Theory of Planned Behavior’ could only be verified in approaches (e.g., MacFarlane & Woolfson, 2013; Schüle, Schriek, Besa, & Arnold, 2016). On the one hand, the results from several studies indicate that the teachers’ intentions concerning inclusive education were significantly predicted by their attitudes towards inclusive education, their self-efficacy beliefs as well as their perceptions of the available school support (e.g., Ahmmed, Sharma, & Deppler, 2014). On the other hand, the results of the studies by MacFarlane and Woolfson (2013) as well as Malak, Sharma and Deppler (2018) show that teachers’ intentions were not significantly explained by their perceptions of their school principal’s views on inclusion. As described in the ‘Theory of Planned Behavior’, the results from several studies illustrate that teachers’ everyday practices in inclusive classrooms are significantly explained by their intentions concerning inclusive education as well as by their self-efficacy beliefs (e.g., Yan & Sin, 2014). Additionally, it has been shown that the effect of teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs concerning the organization of inclusive education on their self-reported behavior in inclusive classrooms was significantly mediated by their intentions concerning inclusive education (Yan & Sin, 2014). However, the findings concerning determinants of teachers’ behavior in inclusive classrooms are currently not consistent (e.g., Schüle et al., 2016). Accordingly, further research is needed in order to clarify determinants of teachers’ intentions to cope with inclusive education and their everyday practices in inclusive classrooms.
Therefore, we take the ‘Theory of Planned Behavior’ as a starting point of our study and prove determinants of primary school teachers’ everyday practices in inclusive classrooms. In detail, we assume that the primary school teachers’ intentions regarding the implementation of inclusion are significantly predicted by their attitudes towards inclusion, their self-efficacy beliefs concerning teaching in inclusive classrooms as well as their perceived school managements’ expectations (H1). Furthermore, we expect that the primary school teachers’ self-reported everyday practices in heterogeneous classrooms can significantly be explained by their self-efficacy beliefs concerning the organization of inclusive education as well as their intentions regarding inclusive education (H2). Finally, we make the assumption that the effect of the teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs concerning the organization of inclusive education on their self-reported everyday practices in heterogeneous classrooms are significantly mediated by their intentions regarding inclusive education (H3).
In our study, N=290 primary school teachers from 62 schools in Germany (North Rhine-Westphalia/ Lower Saxony) were asked to fill out a questionnaire concerning their attitudes towards inclusion, their self-efficacy beliefs concerning the organization of inclusive education, their perceived school managements’ expectations, their intentions regarding the implementation of inclusive education as well as their self-reported everyday practices in heterogeneous classrooms. The teachers’ average age was 42 years (M=42.19, SD=10.70, Min=25 years, Max=66 years). Their attitudes towards inclusion were measured on the basis of a self-developed questionnaire scale (five items; e.g., “In the classroom, learning conditions and performance prerequisites of all children should be taken into account.”; M=4.58, SD=0.54, α=.86). Based on the work of Skaalvik and Skaalvik (2007), a scale was applied to investigate teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs concerning the organization of inclusive education (eight items; e.g., “What is your opinion? Can you realize the following activities in inclusive classrooms better on your own or in cooperation with another teacher? – Adapting learning tasks to children’s individual needs.”; M=4.49, SD=0.59, α=.87). Following Mahat (2008), we developed a questionnaire scale to measure primary school teachers’ perceived school managements’ expectations (four items; e.g., “My school management expects from me that I encourage all children to take part in social activities in the classroom.”; M=4.46, SD=0.54, α=.78). Furthermore, a scale was applied to investigate teachers’ intentions regarding the implementation of inclusive education (five items; e.g., “Imagine that a child in your classroom has great problems in literacy and numeracy. The child needs more time than the other students to complete the schoolwork. – I would consider the child’s individual needs in planning and providing education.”; M=4.26, SD=0.63, α=.83). We adapted this questionnaire scale from studies by Roy, Guay, and Valois (2013) as well as Schwab (2015). Finally, we measured the teachers’ self-reported everyday practices in heterogeneous classrooms on the basis of a scale by Wertheim and Leyser (2002) (five items; e.g., “How often do you use the following measures of teaching? – In my lessons, all children get different forms of learning tasks on the same learning topic that correspond to their individual learning abilities.”; M=3.63, SD=0.70, α=.83). The teachers made their assessments on 5-point Likert scales in each case. The study was carried out by trained research assistants. They received instructions for conducting the survey. Thus, the objectivity of the application was ensured.
In order to examine our research hypotheses, a structural equation model was computed in Mplus. The primary school teachers’ attitudes towards inclusion, their self-efficacy beliefs, their perceived school managements’ expectations as well as their intentions concerning inclusive education were therefore modeled as exogenous variables. The questionnaire scale ‘everyday practices in heterogeneous classrooms’ was set as an endogenous variable. According to Ajzen’s ‘Theory of Planned Behavior’ (1991), the teachers’ intentions regarding the implementation of inclusive education were modeled as a mediator between their self-efficacy beliefs concerning the organization of inclusive education and their self-reported everyday practices in inclusive classrooms. The empirical SEM shows to be a good fit for the theoretical model structure (χ2=716.81, df=316, χ2/df=2.27, p≤.001, CFI=.88, TLI=.87, RMSEA=.07, pclose=0.00, CI=.06–.07). Supporting hypothesis (H1), the results from the SEM indicate that the teachers’ intentions regarding the implementation of inclusive education are significantly predicted by their attitudes towards inclusion, by their self-efficacy beliefs as well as by their perceived school managements’ expectations with an explained variance of 33%. Supporting hypothesis (H2), the teachers’ everyday practices are significantly explained by their intentions to implement inclusive education with an explained variance of 28%. Contrary to our expectations, teachers’ everyday practices are not significantly predicted by their self-efficacy beliefs. Not supporting hypothesis (H3), the effect of the teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs on their everyday practices in inclusive classrooms is not mediated by their intentions regarding the implementation of inclusive education. In summary, the results of our study indicate the importance of primary school teachers’ attitudes towards inclusive education, their self-efficacy beliefs and their perceived school managements’ expectations for their intentions regarding inclusive education. In further long-term studies, the relationship between teachers’ personal resources, their intentions regarding inclusive education and their everyday practices in classrooms should be investigated in terms of cause and effect.
Ahmmed, M., Sharma, U., & Deppeler, J. (2014). Variables affecting teachers’ intentions to include students with disabilities in regular primary schools in Bangladesh. Disability & Society, 29 (2), 317–331. Ajzen, I. (1991). The theory of planned behavior. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 50(2), 179–211. Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York: Freeman. Eagly, A. H. & Chaiken, S. (1993). The psychology of attitudes. Fort Worth, TX: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. MacFarlane, K. & Woolfson, L. M. (2013). Teacher attitudes and behavior toward the inclusion of children with social, emotional and behavioral difficulties in mainstream schools: An application of the theory of planned behavior. Teaching and Teacher Education, 29, 46–52. Mahat, M. (2008). The development of a psychometrically-sound instrument to measure teachers’ multidimensional attitudes toward inclusive education. International Journal of Special Education, 23(1), 82–92. Malak, S., Sharma, U., & Deppler, J. M. (2018). Predictors of primary schoolteachers’ behavioural intention to teach students demonstrating inappropriate behaviour in regular classrooms. Cambridge Journal of Education, 48(4), 495–514. Roy, A., Guay, F., & Valois, P. (2013). Teaching to address diverse learning needs: Development and validation of a differentiated instruction scale. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 17(11), 1186–1204. Skaalvik, E. M. & Skaalvik, S. (2007). Dimensions of teacher self-efficacy and relations with strain factors, perceived collective teacher efficacy, and teacher burnout. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99(3), 611–625. Schüle, C., Schriek, J., Besa, K.-S., & Arnold, K.-H. (2016). Der Zusammenhang der Theorie des geplanten Verhaltens mit der selbstberichteten Individualisierungspraxis von Lehrpersonen [The theory of planned behavior in relation to teachers’ self-reported individualized teaching]. Empirische Sonderpädagogik, 8(2), 140–152. Schwab, S. (2015). Einflussfaktoren auf die Einstellung von SchülerInnen gegenüber Peers mit unterschiedlichen Behinderungen [Determinants of students’ attitudes towards peers with different kinds of disabilities]. Zeitschrift für Entwicklungspsychologie und Pädagogische Psychologie, 47(4), 177–187. Wertheim, C. & Leyser, Y (2002). Efficacy beliefs, background variables, and differentiated instruction of Israeli prospective teachers. The Journal of Educational Research, 96(1), 54–63. Yan, Z. & Sin, K. (2014). Inclusive education: Teachers’ intentions and behaviour analysed from the viewpoint of the theory of planned behaviour. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 18(1), 72–85.
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.