In recent years, many schools have begun to include students with disabilities in general education classrooms. Studies on "inclusion," have shown several positive effects for students with and without disabilities. This study examines the self-reported attitudes of 185 elementary school students in inclusive and traditional classrooms, as measured by the Scale of Children's Attitudes Toward Exceptionalities (SCATE). Self-reported attitudes and experiences of general education teachers were also assessed using a survey developed by the researcher. Although statistically significant relationships were found on the SCATE, these were not logical or conclusive. Results of the teacher surveys indicate that teachers of inclusive classes more strongly support the district philosophy for including students with disabilities than teachers of traditional classes. The results of this study do not support the hypothesis that students in "inclusive" classrooms have more positive attitudes toward peers with disabilities than students in "traditional" classrooms. Implications for these results and possibilities for future research are discussed.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Children with disabilities--Education (Elementary)--Public opinion; Mainstreaming in education--Public opinion; Children--Attitudes; Teachers--Attitudes
Department, Program, or Center
Department of Psychology (CLA)
Young, Heather, "Student attitudes toward individuals with disabilities: Inclusive versus traditional classrooms in elementary school" (1997). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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