Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


In comparison to the past, more students with disabilities are being included in the general education classroom for science instruction. Though inquiry-based instruction has not shown to be an effective practice for students with disabilities, it is vastly becoming the dominant practice in science education. The purpose of this review is to examine the effects of inquiry-based instruction on science achievement for students with disabilities. The twelve studies, meeting selection criteria, report improvement in science achievement using inquiry practices. The participants and settings, variations of inquiry-based instruction, science achievement measures, and teacher training were addressed in this review. Two major contributions have resulted from analyzing the twelve studies. First, students with disabilities require supports to participate in an inquiry-based lesson and demonstrate progress on science achievement measures. Second, science achievement improves when components of explicit instruction are utilized in both the general and special education setting for students with disabilities.