Special Education and STEM Education Teacher Credentials and Instructional Preparedness for Inclusive STEM Education
Rossi III, Louis Alfonso
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In an effort to meet the demands of industry within society, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education has been a major push for the United States Government resulting in public school system reform. As STEM education begins to become integrated across disciplines and special areas of public schools, and the population of inclusive classrooms containing Students with Disabilities continues to rise, a very important question must be fully investigated and answered. We must ask: Do first year Secondary STEM Education and Special Education teachers have the instructional preparedness to effectively teach all populations of students within their classrooms? And do STEM education and Special Education teachers have the appropriate content credentials to effectively support the diverse needs of students and curriculum in an inclusive STEM education class? This dissertation consists of two research studies that examine Special Education and STEM Education teachers preparedness (coursework and professional development) and content credentials to educate Students with Disabilities within an inclusive STEM Education classroom. This study will be utilizing a secondary analysis of the 2011- 2012 School and Staffing Survey Teacher Questionnaire (SASS TQ) datasets to conduct national analysis of how Special Education and STEM Education teachers degrees, state-level certification areas, and professional development participation reflect potential indicators of preparedness to educate in an inclusive STEM education classroom. The first study focuses on well-known approaches for the instruction of STEM Education and Special Education. This study will utilize differentiated instruction, behavior management, and data to drive instruction as best classroom approaches to instruction to determine their identifiable differences in instructional preparedness among first year STEM educators and first year Special Education teachers. The second study utilizes the 2011-2012 SASS TQ datasets to analyze Special Educators credentials to teach STEM compared to STEM educators credentials to teach Special Education. This study will analyze and compare credentials and backgrounds of STEM educators and Special Educators in search of indicators for preparedness for Inclusive STEM education.
- Doctoral Dissertations