Honoring Voices From Beginning Special Educators for Making Changes in Teacher Preparation

Feb. 01, 2013

Source: Teacher Education and Special Education, 36(1), 65-76, February 2013.

This article presents the results of a mixed-methods study investigated recent graduates’ perceptions of their preparation program.

Beginning special education teachers completed surveys and indicated
(a) their level of preparation and confidence associated with 25 core competencies,
(b) the most beneficial components of their preparation program,
(c) suggestions for improving the program, and
(d) current training needs.

The highest levels of preparation and confidence were found in the areas of professionalism, behavior management, and instruction.
The lowest levels of preparation and confidence were noted in transition and teaching students whose first language was not English.

Participants reported that early clinical experiences and student teaching were the most beneficial components of the program.
Furthermore, they offered suggestions for adding breadth and depth to courses and desired to learn more about timely issues.

Updated: Feb. 19, 2014