School of Education
Doctor of Philosophy in Education (PhD)
teacher attitudes, inclusion, general education teachers, elementary, special education, teachers efficacy, self-efficacy, students with disabilities, transcendental phenomenological
Edwards, Kimberly Lovett, "A Transcendental Phenomenological Study Regarding Teachers' Attitudes and Efficacy toward Students with Disabilities in an Inclusion Classroom Environment" (2023). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 4390.
The purpose of this qualitative transcendental phenomenological study was to understand elementary-level general education teachers’ attitudes and efficacy regarding teaching students with disabilities in an inclusion classroom environment. Bandura’s self-efficacy theory guided this study of teachers’ relationships with their attitudes and efficacy levels with educating students with disabilities in the inclusion classroom environment. The research questions addressed the teachers’ attitudes toward the inclusion of students with disabilities in the inclusion classroom environment. Ten teachers from local elementary public schools participated in individual interviews, and 4 engaged in a focus group interview. The individual and focus interviews were recorded, digitally transcribed with a qualitative computer software program, and examined to determine rich codes and themes. Five themes emerged from data analysis—addressing challenges of teaching students in the inclusion environment, addressing benefits of teaching students in the inclusion environment, effectiveness of professional development or training opportunities, general education teachers’ perceptions of their self-efficacy, and administrators’ support in the inclusion environment—showing the benefits, challenges, and participants’ thoughts of teaching in the inclusion classroom environment. The participants outlined the importance of professional development and administration support to teach students with disabilities in the inclusion classroom setting. Overall, the themes provided a rich and nuanced understanding of the attitudes, experiences, and efficacy of general education teachers in teaching students with disabilities in the inclusion classroom environment.