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Saudi Arabian female teachers’ attitudes towards the inclusion of children with autism into mainstream classrooms

Alhudaithi, Ghada Saleh S. (2015) Saudi Arabian female teachers’ attitudes towards the inclusion of children with autism into mainstream classrooms. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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The purpose of this study was to determine the attitudes of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), female elementary schools’ and autism special institutes’ teachers towards inclusion of children with autism into mainstream classrooms in KSA. Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is characterised by a range of complex neuro-development disorders such as social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behaviour. Occurrence is estimated at 1 in 88 birth, and it is three to four times more common in boys than girls. Modifications of Reasoned Action and Planned Behaviour theories were used as a framework to analyse the reason and the importance behind teachers’ attitudes and behaviours towards inclusion of children with autism. To examine teachers’ attitudes and to answer the research main questions mixed type of quantitative and qualitative research approaches were designed. A Likert type questionnaire was adapted and developed from the Opinions Relative to Mainstreaming (ORM) of Antonak and Larrivee (1995). It was then translated to Arabic language and checked for validity and reliability. Questionnaires were mainly used for measuring the teachers' attitudes towards inclusion. Teachers’ responses to open-ended questions and interviews were also part of the research. Six hundred teachers were surveyed; 497 (83%) useful questionnaires were returned and used for data analyses, and 12 teachers were interviewed. For the study data analysis, different descriptive statistical measures were used through SPSS system. The results were grouped in five themes, and revealed that teachers were supportive and have positive attitudes toward inclusion of children with autism in mainstream classrooms. Private special institutes’ teachers however, held more positive attitudes toward the inclusion than those of governmental public mainstream elementary school teachers. The qualitative analysis of the open-ended written responses and the interviews revealed that all teachers appeared unsupportive of the general concept of inclusion as, if it is to be applied now. They believe that the mainstream classrooms are not appropriate, setting for children with autism nor the teachers were qualified. They need further preparation and training. Based on the results, implications and recommendations for future practice are provided.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law (Leeds) > School of Education (Leeds)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.682264
Depositing User: Mrs Ghada Alhudaithi
Date Deposited: 06 Apr 2016 09:05
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2016 15:45
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/12373

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