An investigation into the balance of the school curriculum content for pupils with a visual impairment in Turkey

Işlek, Önder (2017). An investigation into the balance of the school curriculum content for pupils with a visual impairment in Turkey. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This thesis investigated the educational curriculum experienced by students with visual impairments in Turkey. The study made a distinction between the traditional academic curriculum and the concept of an 'Expanded Core Curriculum' (ECC) which includes a range of disability-specific areas (e.g. Mobility, Braille), and aimed to determine the balance of the curriculum experienced by individuals with visual impairments in Turkey. The study specifically examined the barriers to, and enablers for, an appropriate curriculum balance which would develop individuals' independence. The study made use of an exploratory inductive research approach implementing a cross-sectional research design. Mixed method measures were drawn upon to capture the views of twelve young adults with visual impairments and thirteen educators of children and young adults with visual impairments who had a wide range of schooling and teaching experiences across Turkey. The analysis revealed an emphasis on teaching the academic curriculum with relatively little attention given to ECC. As a consequence, it was found that individuals with visual impairments were not fully prepared to be independent and encountered a number of barriers including: remaining dependent on others; isolation; and psychological challenges in their everyday life. A number of barriers to the teaching of ECC were revealed, including: educational policy priorities in Turkey which give little or no remit to teaching a broader curriculum (teachers were fixed upon teaching the inflexible academic curriculum); little resource is given to specialist teaching support in mainstream schools; and specialist teacher training appears not to align to the educational context in which they work. Finally, the research identified other barriers to developing an individual's independence which are beyond the teaching of ECC, including inaccessible environments and equipment, and inadequate accommodations and adjustments.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
School or Department: School of Education
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: L Education > LC Special aspects of education


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