Takisha EppsFollow




School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Angela M. Smith


Instructional Tools, Intellectual Disabilities, IPads, Technology


Accessibility | Curriculum and Instruction | Disability and Equity in Education | Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Educational Methods | Other Education


he purpose of this transcendental phenomenological study was to describe the lived experience of 11 special education teachers, who implemented iPads as an instructional tool for elementary students with intellectual disabilities. This study was conducted in a North Carolina school district. The theories, which guided this study were Vygotsky’s (1978) sociocultural theory and Piaget’s (1954) cognitive development theory. Within the study, one central question and three sub-questions were used to guide the study. The research questions focused on special education teachers’ experiences, as they implemented the iPad as an instructional tool for students with intellectual disabilities. To address these questions about the lived experiences of these special education teachers, data were collected via: (a) face-to-face interviews, (b) observations, and (c) focus groups. Analysis of data was conducted with the use of Moustakas’ (1994) procedures, in order to analyze the data provide a full description of the phenomenon through the analytic techniques of: (a) bracketing, (b) horizonalization, (c) clusters of meaning, as well as (d) identification of textual and structural descriptions. Creswell (2013) noted that use of this process allows the author to determine the essence of the phenomenon. During this procedure, the technique of triangulation was used to increase the reliability of the study; in addition, reflexivity, external audit, and member checks were used to support the findings from the data analysis.