Facilitating Greek young learners with Asperger’s syndrome into the mainstream English as an Additional Language (EAL) classroom through the use of Interactive Whiteboard Technologies

Sagia, Sophia (2015) Facilitating Greek young learners with Asperger’s syndrome into the mainstream English as an Additional Language (EAL) classroom through the use of Interactive Whiteboard Technologies. Masters thesis, University of Bolton.

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Abstract

Students on the spectrum are often seen as having difficulty in learning a foreign language. This assumption often works as an additional barrier to their successful integration in the mainstream education, robbing them of one more learning opportunity in comparison to their peers. Their abilities have often been overlooked or underestimated and their needs have been given low priority. However, on the basis of their cognitive abilities children with Asperger syndrome are attractive candidates for inclusive education although some teachers still express their concern. Obstacles to participation reside mainly in the environment and such barriers can be eliminated as new technology seems to offer exciting opportunities to that end. This study explores ways to facilitate the learning and inclusion of students with Asperger syndrome in English as an Additional Language through the use of the Interactive Whiteboard. Recent literature has indicated a plethora of ways to support children’s learning through the use of the Interactive Whiteboard. The research took place in a language school in Greece and a case study approach was employed with naturalistic observations and semi-structured interviews so as to investigate how the Interactive Whiteboard as a teaching and learning tool enhanced the teacher’s pedagogical practices and allowed her to meet the specific needs of the two participants. The case study also reports on various strategies that can potentially help students with Asperger’s syndrome meet their learning objectives. Findings suggest that new technologies offer new answers to barriers for children’s participation in education and social life but also that inclusion is inherently dependent on the teachers’ perception of technology as a facilitating factor, on their attitudes towards children’s with Asperger’s syndrome needs, in-service training and on the provision of sufficient resources.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information: This is an electronic version of the research for the degree of MPhil in Special Education
Uncontrolled Keywords: Asperger’s syndrome (AS), English as an Additional Language (EAL), Interactive Whiteboard (IWB), Inclusion
Divisions: School of Education and Psychology > Education
Depositing User: Tracey Gill
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2015 10:20
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2015 10:20
URI: http://ubir.bolton.ac.uk/id/eprint/783

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