Source: Teacher Education and Special Education, Volume 31 Number 3, Summer 2008. 182-194
The authors explore pre-service special education teacher reaction to and experience in a collaboratively taught higher education course.
43 full-time post-baccalaureate students participate in a course designed to examine critical issues in special education. The course was taught by two faculty members, one specializing in mild and moderate disabilities and the other in moderate and severe disabilities. The participants ranged in age from under 25 to above 50, with a higher number of women (81.4%) than men (18.6%). A small percentage of students had previous teaching or paraprofessional experience.
Pre-service teachers respond to a survey about their knowledge and comfort with co-teaching. Data are collected and analyzed both quantitatively and qualitatively. Three qualitative themes regarding participants' perceptions of skills affecting co-teaching emerge: interpersonal skills, collaborative skills, and instructional issues. Overall, participant knowledge of co-teaching increase and faculty modeling of co-teaching is reported as the most valuable contributing factor.