Graduation Date

12-2011

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department or Program

Education

Department or Program Chair

Madalienne F. Peters, Ed.D.

First Reader

Madalienne F. Peters, Ed.D.

Abstract

General education teachers in the secondary sector are held responsible for adapting their lessons and classroom environment for students with Asperger Syndrome. With the growing number of students within the autism spectrum disorder being placed in general education classrooms, teachers are faced with yet another challenge in making their curriculum inclusive. It has been my observation that teachers who have no prior training or knowledge of Asperger Syndrome struggle with making instructional accommodations to ensure these students reach their greatest potential. This study is intended to describe what secondary high school teachers are doing to differentiate instruction for their students with Asperger Syndrome and to identify some of their struggles and concerns. From the literature on the topic, it is evident that teachers feel they lack the support and training in adapting their instructional strategies for students with Asperger Syndrome. What are the instructional strategies that general education teachers can make to help high school students with Asperger Syndrome successfully achieve their full potential? Interview analysis revealed that general education teachers feel that they need additional training when they are working with students with Asperger syndrome. They suggested that this could take the form of a professional development class with a focus on dealing with children with special needs.

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