An exploration of interdisciplinary collaboration when serving students with moderate and severe disabilities at the middle and high school levels: A current snapshot of perceived barriers and opportunities
Date of Graduation
College of Education and Human Services
Barbara L. Ludlow.
This study investigated current perceptions of the barriers and the opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration among Special Educators and Related Health Service Personnel at the middle and high school levels when serving students with moderate and severe disabilities. In order to serve individuals with moderate and severe disabilities in accordance with federal legislation and current best practice, it is important that education and related health services professionals work together collaboratively.;The design of this study combined a simple quantitative survey measure with exploratory, qualitative inquiry using a series of open-ended focus group interviews. Sampling for this research study was purposeful homogeneous sampling where the researcher intentionally selected individuals for investigating and understanding the central phenomenon. In this study, the participants were drawn from middle and secondary teachers and related service personnel employed by the Springfield City School District, Springfield, Ohio.;Data was collected in three phases. Phase one consisted of a questionnaire distributed district-wide to special educators and related health services personnel. Phase two consisted of focus groups, one with special educators and one with related health services personnel. Phase three data collection consisted of a final focus group combing both special educators and related health service personnel.;Findings were that special educators and related service personnel participating in this study agreed, in general, on the definition of interdisciplinary collaboration. Participants in this study mutually agreed on the definition of collaboration, they perceived a lack of support and understanding of collaboration on the part of administrators which they identified as a barrier. A third area of general agreement involved the constraints of time. Participants reported that finding the time to develop collaborations was a serious problem. A unique opportunity for improved collaboration when serving students with moderate and severe disabilities at the middle and high school levels was identified. Both special educators and related health services personnel identified transition to be an opportunity. Despite the existence of several barriers to the development and implementation of effective collaborations, the value of collaboration was recognized by participants.
Brannan, Sara A., "An exploration of interdisciplinary collaboration when serving students with moderate and severe disabilities at the middle and high school levels: A current snapshot of perceived barriers and opportunities" (2005). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 3418.