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Diverse Learners in Specialized & Inclusive Settings

This course is designed to increase participants' awareness and understanding of the educational, social, cultural, political, and developmental implications of disability. The course is meant to help educators recognize and respond to the needs of children and adolescents as part of a broad spectrum of individuals who differ in learning experience and ability. We will examine variations in physical, social, cognitive, and/or behavioral development of learners through a series of questions that link the strengths and challenges of the individual learner with perspectives of school, family, and community. The main course text has a focus on the spectrum of experiences of individuals and families. The course will incorporate issues and questions related to the evaluation and classificaton of children and adolescents, as well as the legal and philosophical obligations of general and special education teachers. Particpants will be expected to identify essential questions to guide their own learning, and to share personal perspectives, research, and critical thinking about the challenges of disability in the context of diverse learning community. There is a designated fieldwork component included in course requirements. Prerequisite: EDUC 500, EDUC 502 or EDUC 800. (Pending approval of the Curriculum Committee.)