Moving from silence toward voice: exploring educational experiences of people with learning disabilities
LE3 .A278 2004
Master of Education
While it is no secret that students with learning disabilities encounter difficulties in school, it is only recently that their views regarding their educational experiences have been explored. This qualitative study has explored the educational experiences of four adults with learning disabilities by utilizing semi-structured, in-depth interviews. Four questions guided this study. They were: (1) What was school like for these people? (2) What could schools have done differently? (3) How did school help prepare them for achieving their life goals? (4) What did the participants believe was the purpose of school? Five themes were identified--relationships with teachers, success enhancers, frustration, anger and self esteem issues, compensation strategies, and the importance and purpose of school--and the participants' viewpoints were identified by exploring these themes. School was an overwhelmingly negative experience for these four adults, and they talked at length about how their experiences could have been improved. These suggestions for improvement of the education system form the basis of recommendations for students, parents, teachers, administrators, unions, colleges of education and government.
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