Proposed Study of the Effects Inclusion and Peer Acceptance of Students with Learning Disabilities

Topics: Special education, Educational psychology, Resource room Pages: 21 (6835 words) Published: June 30, 2009
Running head: INCLUSION AND PEER ACCEPTANCE

Proposed Study of the Effects Inclusion and Peer Acceptance of Students with Learning Disabilities
Necole P. Joseph
HS5006
Capella University
Fall Quarter 2008

Introduction

The mainstreaming movement began in 1975 with the passage of Public Law 94-142 (Education for All Handicapped Children Act). Since then, additional legislation has allowed for children with disabilities and special needs to be integrated into the regular education classroom setting through the concept of mainstreaming (Yell & Shriner, 1997). Though mainstreaming has been heralded as an effective way of improving the academic and social environment of children with learning disabilities, its success continues to raise questions concerning the quality of social interactions for children in the mainstreamed classroom (Helper, 1994).

Statement of the Problem

One critical factor that has been identified across studies regardless of age and grade level is the importance of social skills for peer acceptance. It has been postulated that an inclusive environment in and of itself will not guarantee peer acceptance. For this to happen, students, disabled and non-disabled, must possess social skills (Buysee, et al., 2002) regardless of age and grade level, is the importance of social skills for peer acceptance. It has been postulated that an inclusive environment in and of itself will not guarantee peer acceptance. For this to happen, students, disabled and non-disabled, must possess social skills (Buysee, et al., 2002). As stated in The Child Health Foundations and Agencies Network (as cited in Buysee, et al., 2002), children who enter kindergarten without the requisite social and emotional skills often have difficulties with behavioral, academic, and social problems that can persist into adulthood. Likewise, a finding by Stiliadis and Wiener (1989) support the concept that the levels of social perception non-disabled students possess about disabled peers is directly related to the level of peer acceptance as it pertains to disabled peers. According to Guralnick and Groom (1988), the majority of children with disabilities with disabilities have significant peer-related social skill deficits that will hinder the development of meaningful friendships with non-disabled peers. Proponents of inclusion have addressed not only the benefit of inclusion for a child with special needs, but also for genera l education students and teachers. Moore, Gilbreath, and Maiuri (1998) noted, “Inclusion, which is a philosophy of acceptance, belonging and community, also means that general education classes are structured to meet the needs of all the students in the class” (p.2). The authors express the necessity of meeting the needs of all students in the school system, not just those identified as having special needs. All students must have the support they need to succeed in school. Results of the study revealed that inclusion of students with disabilities had a positive effect on all parties involved, including non-disabled students, disabled students, and teachers (Moore, Gilbreath, & Maiuri, 1998).

As inclusive education moves forward, educators and administrators are slowly changing their philosophical beliefs about the way we educate children with disabilities. Inclusion has promoted the need to reform the overall design of classrooms to welcome and provide a meaningful education to a range of diverse children (Shoho, Katims, & Wilks, 1997). The goal of inclusive schools is to mainstream students with exceptional needs in the general education classroom and reorganize the environment to meet the needs of all students.

In order to fully understand and comprehend the impact of inclusion on peer acceptance, researchers must continue to investigate the relationship between the inclusive school environment and resultant peer relationships. Research thus far, as will be demonstrated in the review of related...

References: Banerji, M., & Dailey, R. A. (1995). A Study of the effects of an inclusion model
on students with specific learning disabilities
Buysse, V., Goldman, B.D., & Skinner, M. L. (2002). Setting effects of friendship
formation among young children with and without disabilities
Cook, B. G., & Semmel, M. I. (1999). Peer acceptance of included students with
disabilities as a function of severity of disability and classroom composition
Cutts, S., & Sigafoos, J. (2001) Social competence and peer interactions of
students with intellectual disability in an inclusive high school
Guralnick , M. J., & Groom, J. M. (1998). Peer interactions in mainstreamed and
specialized classrooms: A comparative analysis
Helper, J. B. (1994). Mainstreaming children with learning disabilities: Have we
improved their social environment
Hines, R. (2001). Inclusion in middle schools. Champaign, IL: ERIC
Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education
Larrivee, B., & Horne, M. D. (1991). Social status: A comparison of
mainstreamed students with peers of different ability levels
Leedy P.D. & Ormrod, J.E., (2005). Survey of Research Methodology for Human Services
Learners
Moore, C., Gilbreath, D., & Maiuri, F. (1998). Educating students with disabilities
in general education classrooms: A summary of the research (Report No
Parvi, S., & Luftig, R. (2000). The social face of inclusive education: Are students
with learning disabilities really included in the classroom
Putnam, J., & Markovchick, K. (1996). Cooperative learning and peer acceptance
of students with learning disabilities
Shoho, A. R., Katims, D. S., & Wilks, D. (1997). Perceptions of alienation among
students with learning disabilities in inclusive and resource settings
Stiliadis, K., Wiener, J. (1989). Relationship between social perception and peer
status in children with learning disabilities
Vaughn, S., Elbaum, B. E., & Schumm, J. S. (1996). The effects of inclusion on
the social functioning of students with learning disabilities
Vaughn, S., & Elbaum, B. E. (2001).The social functioning of students with
learning disabilities: Implications for inclusion
Yell, M. L., & Shriner, J. G. (1997). The IDEA amendments of 1997: Implications
for special and general education teachers, administrators, and teacher trainers
on students with specific learning disabilities. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 28(8), 511-522. Retrieved October 10, 2008, from the Academic Search Premier Database.
formation among young children with and without disabilities. Exceptional Children, 68(4), 503-517. Retrieved October 28, 2008, from the Academic Search Premier Database.
disabilities as a function of severity of disability and classroom composition. Journal of Special Education, 33(1), 50-60. Retrieved October 28, 2008, from the Academic Search Premier Database.
intellectual disability in an inclusive high school. Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability, 26(2), 127-141. Retrieved October 10, 2008, from the Academic Search Premier Database.
Hines, R. (2001). Inclusion in middle schools. Champaign, IL: ERIC
Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education
Katz, J., & Mirenda, P. (2002). Including students with developmental disabilities in
general education classrooms: Social benefits
Kiesner, J., & Pastore, M. (2005). Differences in the relations between antisocial
behavior and peer acceptance across contexts and across adolescence
Larrivee, B., & Horne, M. D. (1991). Social status: A comparison of mainstreamed
students with peers of different ability levels
Pearpoint, J., Forest, M., & Snow, J. (1992). The Inclusion Papers:
Strategies to Make Inclusion Work
Salend, S.J. (1994). Strategies for assessing attitudes toward individuals with
disabilities
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • A Learning Disability Essay
  • Students with Disabilities Essay
  • inclusion Essay
  • Case Study: Student with Learning Disability Classification Essay
  • Week 3 Learning Disabilities Essay
  • Learning disabilities Essay
  • Learning Disabilities Research Paper
  • Essay about Learning Disabilities

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free