Is Teacher Stigma Associated with the Delivery of Instructional Supports to Students with Disabilities?

  • Author / Creator
    Aquilina, Alexandra
  • The present study is exploratory and was conducted to investigate teachers’ beliefs about the academic potential of students with disabilities (SWD) based on their attributions and potentially stigmatizing views. In addition, the association between these attributions and teachers’ reported likelihood of implementing instructional supports was investigated. Controllability, as described in Attribution Theory, is associated with stigmatizing views and was a variable of focus in the present study. Seven neurodevelopmental disorders were investigated and vignettes were used to depict each hypothetical student. A convenience sampling method was employed and thirty-seven practicing teachers within Canada participated by responding to questions following the vignettes. One-way within- subjects ANOVAs were conducted, using post-hoc comparisons to further investigate significant main effects. The results revealed that when teachers were asked if they believed that the student would demonstrate significant improvement to their academic ability if they received instructional supports, ratings were significantly different depending on the disability. Teacher ratings revealed that when asked about their own likelihood of implementing instructional supports to SWD, there was not a significant difference depending on the disability depicted. Teacher ratings were also found not to be significantly different when asked if each student was not succeeding academically due to lack of effort. However, they were significantly different depending on the disability when asked if they believed that the student was in control of their academic success. Implications for training, practice, and research are discussed.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2017
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Education
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.