Assessing teachers' attitudes towards inclusive education within an urban school district in Ireland
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Higher Diploma in Arts in Psychology
Dublin Business School
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The role of teachers in establishing inclusive learning environments is critical. It is generally accepted that inclusive practice relies on teacher knowledge, skills, understanding, and attitudes. This study aimed to assess teachers’ attitudes towards inclusive education and establish the constraints and barriers faced by teachers in creating inclusive learning environments. It also assessed the effect of inclusion on teachers’ perceived self-efficacy. Two schools from an urban district in Ireland were used for data collection. The instruments used were self-reported questionnaires and the participants consisted of mainstream, learning support and resource teachers in the participating schools. Pre service training and professional development was a significant factor in ensuring positive teacher attitudes. Other challenges reported by teachers were class size, behaviour and severity of need. The results indicated that experience with special educational needs resulted in higher perceived self-efficacy. Author keywords: Inclusion, special educational needs, training, self-efficacy