The topic of this study was the way teachers of children with autism perceive the home-school collaboration and its impact on learning. This research addressed the gap in the literature on the topics of children with autism’s performance gap in comparison to their age-equivalent peers. The research question was, “How do teachers of children with autism perceive the home-school collaboration and its impact on learning?” A generic qualitative methodology was appropriate to address this question. Data collection occurred through face-to-face interviews with 8 open-ended questions. The sample included 10 teachers of children with autism. All teachers had a minimum of 3 years’ teaching experience, were state certified special educators, currently taught children with autism, and had experience collaborating with the people in the children’s homes. Inductive thematic analysis facilitated identification of the patterns and themes that emerged from the data and provided a thorough understanding of the home-school collaboration. Six themes emerged from the teachers’ responses: (a) collaboration improves learning, (b) communication is vital, (c) collaboration supports overall student improvement, (d) challenges to the collaboration, (e) parental involvement is imperative, and (f) ways for teachers to promote parental engagement. The results of the study suggested that teachers involved in home-school collaboration can overcome obstacles that are inherent in the collaboration process and facilitating academic success. A strong collaboration consistently yielded positive results for a child with autism. With a strong connection between the parent and teacher, a child was able to grasp material in the classroom, while the home strengthened the learning process. Along with improving learning, the home-school collaboration process decreased the child’s anxiety and enhanced a sense of security. Some recommendations for future research include utilizing a larger sample to increase generalizability and covering a larger geographic area for better representation of the population.
|Commitee:||Doogan, Mike, Longo, Nancy|
|Department:||Social and Behavioral Sciences|
|School Location:||United States -- Minnesota|
|Source:||DAI-B 78/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Educational psychology, Special education|
|Keywords:||Autism, Collaboration, Learning, Parent, Perception, Teacher|
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