Supporting Secondary Students with Disabilities in an Inclusive Environment

Supporting Secondary Students with Disabilities in an Inclusive Environment

Pam L. Epler (Grand Canyon University, USA)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 32
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1753-5.ch005
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This chapter is designed to inform and educate secondary (Grades 6–12) pre-service teachers on how to provide content and design assignments for students within the special education continuum. The chapter is divided into 12 sections, one for each IDEA disability category. Each section includes the definition and characteristics of the specific category as well as how it impacts learning. The prevalence of the exceptionality occurring in the secondary classroom is also discussed, thus informing pre-service teacher candidates about which disability categories they are most likely to encounter while teaching. Also included in each section is a discussion and examples of various research-based instructional strategies and assignments as well as resources such as websites or illustrations that can be utilized.
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Autism Spectrum Disorder (Asd)


ASD is “a developmental disability significantly affecting verbal and nonverbal communication and social interaction, generally evident before age three, that adversely affects educational performance. Characteristics often associated with autism are engaging in repetitive activities and stereotyped movements, resistance to changes in daily routines or the environment, and unusual responses to sensory experiences” (34 IDEA §300.8 [c] [1], 2004).


Approximately 7% of children receiving special education services are receiving services for autism (Kena et al., 2014). This exceptionality is considered a high-risk disability, meaning a secondary teacher will probably see this type of disability in his or her classroom.

ASD covers a spectrum of disorders. Of these disorders, probably the most prevalent, and the one that will most likely be encountered in the general education classroom, is Asperger’s Syndrome. Students with Asperger’s tend to have very high IQs and can verbalize. An example of this type of student is the character Dustin Hoffman played in the movie Rain Man.

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