Date of Award

5-2016

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis

Department

Speech and Hearing Sciences

First Advisor

Kelly Metz, Ph.D.

Advisor Department

Speech and Hearing Sciences

Abstract

Many deaf and hard of hearing (D/HH) children receive their education primarily in the general education classroom with the majority of their academic instruction provided by a general education teacher. The purpose of this study was to investigate how general education teachers in the southeastern region of Mississippi perceive D/HH students included in the general education classroom. Specifically, this study was designed to explore the attitudes of general education teachers toward the inclusion of students with hearing loss, evaluate their feelings of preparedness to teach this unique population, and to identify the type and quality of services currently being provided to D/HH students in this region. Data for this research study was collected through an anonymous online survey that was electronically sent to general education teachers throughout southeastern Mississippi. The results from this study suggest that general education teachers have an overall positive attitude toward the abilities and characteristics of D/HH children and the inclusion of D/HH students in the general education classroom. Despite reporting a positive attitude, many general educators surveyed indicated feeling unprepared to teach students with hearing loss. They also reported that the students with hearing loss at their schools are receiving adequate services, although the majority of students are not receiving services from a teacher of the deaf. Study results suggest that better education is needed for all educators to be aware of the importance of D/HH children receiving services from a teacher of the deaf.

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