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Open Access Giving students voice as a strategy for improving teacher practice

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This study used a semi-structured interview tool with elementary students in an inclusive charter school in a western state in the United States. Students with and without disabilities were asked to comment on their participation in their classroom and their perceptions of the classroom climate in order to begin a dialogue with their teachers that would lead to more participation in decision-making. Compiled data from the interviews were shared with teachers who were then interviewed about their analysis and use of the data for making improvements to their classroom environment and approach to pedagogy. Teacher responses were analysed for trends and actions taken following the feedback. Teachers concluded that the data were helpful and committed to use the tool regularly in the future to foster ongoing conversations with their students. They used the information from their students to make changes in the classroom climate, in their own teaching practices, and in the content of what they were teaching. Implications for expanding upon the use of the tool in the future to promote greater dialogue between teachers and students are discussed.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2011

More about this publication?
  • Founded in 2003 by the UCL Institute of Education, the journal reflects the Institute's broad interests in all types of education in all contexts - local, national, global - and its commitment to analysis across disciplines using a variety of methodologies. It shares the Institute's aspiration to interrogate links between research, policy and practice, and its principled concern for social justice.

    Drawing on these strengths, LRE is a wide-ranging and engaging journal that features rigorous analysis and significant research across key themes in education, including: public goals and policies; pedagogy; curriculum; organization; resources and technology; and institutional effectiveness. Articles and book reviews are written by experts in education, psychology, sociology, policy studies, philosophy and other disciplines contributing to education research, and by experienced researcher-practitioners working in the field. The highest quality of reporting and presentation are ensured through an independent, anonymised peer-review process. As an entirely web-based open access journal, LRE has been able to offer innovative features and formats including: epistolary conversation; colour photos and illustrations; illustrative video clips.

    LRE welcomes relevant articles and book reviews. Please email them to [email protected]

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