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The Value of Adding the Special Education Teacher to the Co-taught Elementary Classrom

Volonino, Victoria (2009) The Value of Adding the Special Education Teacher to the Co-taught Elementary Classrom. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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In the current era of educational reform and accountability, co-teaching has emerged as a popular and widely implemented service delivery model for students with special needs. The intent of this inquiry was to examine the roles and responsibilities assumed by the elementary special educator during the practice of co-teaching. Using naturalistic inquiry, 11 pairs of co-teachers in 32 elementary language arts and mathematics classes were observed and the activities of the special educator were documented at 5-minute intervals. Results indicated that the special educator assumed several different roles while co-teaching. These included team teaching, providing individual or small group support, and lead teaching. Overall, the special educator spent the majority of his or her time as the lead instructor of a heterogeneous group of students formed by the special and general educators dividing the class into groups. The special educator then either taught his or her group within the general education classroom or in a separate classroom, frequently the special education classroom. The roles and responsibilities assumed by the special educator also differed by subject matter.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Volonino, Victoriavfv2@pitt.eduVFV2
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairZigmond, Naomi
Committee MemberZimmerman, George
Committee MemberMagiera, Kathleen
Committee MemberBean, Rita
Committee MemberLyon, Steve
Date: 15 June 2009
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 5 March 2009
Approval Date: 15 June 2009
Submission Date: 3 May 2009
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Instruction and Learning
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: co-teaching; collaboration; elementary; special and general education
Other ID:, etd-05032009-173545
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:43
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:43


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