OCR Psychology and Education: Section Five: Assessing Educational Performance

Notes on section five: Assesing Educational Performance of the OCR Psychology and Education module. Hope it's helpful =]

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Special Educational Needs
Section One: Definitions, types & Assessment of Special Educational needs
Children with SEN's were based upon a medical of `defect's
Model focused on:
`difference' rather than normality
`illness' rather than well-being
`deficit' rather than potential
& on the `problem' with the child
Originally children with SEN's were taught in separate/'special' schools
Cyril Burt: Psychometric testing, he agreed that separation of intelligence was a
good thing
ERA 1944
Mainstream education was brought in
Free education for all
Address the problem of the lack of SEN teaching
Act still focused on the `medical model of disability':
11 categories of `handicap'
Children were described in terms of the treatment that they could
1944 Act still referred to children `who suffered from a disability of mind/body' ­
focused on separate `special' schools for the `handicapped'
60's & 70's
Behaviourist approach ­ stressed the need to use operant conditioning
The `Medical Model of Disability' was REJECTED.
Responsibility of dealing with SEN's children was passed to the teachers
The Warnock Report 1978
Based on the findings from a committee set up to review provision for children with
mental and physical disabilities.
Recommended to abolish the use of categories
Suggested a `continuum' of special needs
Only 2% of the school population require help with SEN separately
18% need help with SEN in the school setting
1981 Education Act
Children were defined in accordance with the amount of special educational
provision needed
Children with SEN's should continue in mainstream education where possible
Teaching of children with SEN's seemed more accessible to
mainstream teachers
SEN children should be treated based upon their individual

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ERA 1993
Push for inclusive approach
Schools have to prove that they cannot cope and provide for a student before they
are sent to a specialist school
Criticism: Medical Model of Disability = dehumanising, treating children like objects (Lewis
Definitions of Learning Difficulties:
Social/emotional ­ students with ADHD, Autism etc
Physical ­ sensory deficits e.g. cerebral palsy, epilepsy etc.
Intellectual ­ students with learning difficulties, dyslexia etc.
Le Francois 1997
`Learning Difficulty' ­ used to describe a number of conditions
1.…read more

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Study One: Freeman (1979) Identification and development of Gifted Children in a
social context
Aim: To determine the relationship between IQ and the environment a child is in.
Sample & Variables:
3 groups of 70 students.
Parents had joined NAGC.
Matched for class in school and same score on Ravens progressive matrices.
Random Control group was selected.
All students were tested using intelligence, personality, creativity and music ability
tests.…read more

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Section Two: Independent Study of One Specific learning Disability
Research the causes and effects of the condition.
Link specifically to educational practice.
Autism is a type of developmental disorder. This means that children with autism
develop their learning and thinking skills in unusual ways and at different ages to
other children.
Autism always affects the development of communication skills and social skills.
People with autism have repetitive behaviour patterns and obsessive interests.
They have trouble accepting changes in their life.…read more

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If there is autism in the family, there is an increased risk of someone else in the
family having autism, Asperger syndrome or a language disorder. The risk is increased
from about 1 in 1000 to 2-3 in 100.
Children with autism have a language disorder.
They have difficulty understanding verbal language (what is said) and do not notice or
understand the non-verbal communication of other people (how people show their
feelings, eg. by smiling or frowning).…read more

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For example, a routine could be disturbed if a parent uses a different route when
taking the child to school.
They may have tantrums and be aggressive at times, especially if they have to cope
with a change to their routine.
Sometimes they will deliberately hurt themselves.
They may have obsessive interest in objects, activities and places, and not be willing
to talk about or do other things.…read more

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Section Three: Strategies for educating students with Special Needs
Inclusion or segregation
Should children with SEN's be segregated or included in mainstream schools?
There is a trend towards inclusion both within this country and internationally
Many theorists believe that inclusive education for children with SEN should be
thought of as `right'
Some believe this inclusion makes the teaching of SEN children less effective
Continuum of provision
Public policy in Britain supports inclusion of SEN children in mainstream schools.…read more

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Initiatives of inclusion
In Britain there are different schools of thought about the best way to include
children with SEN.
Some theorists argue total inclusion is important, whereas others, such as
Marston (1996) found that students who were taken out of classes and taught in
special groups for some activities did better than those who received support in
classes.…read more

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Study Three: Learning Disabilities: Should we have Segregation or inclusion?
Gillies et. Al 2000
Aim: to investigate the effects of structured and unstructured lessons for children with
learning difficulties,
Sample: ­ 152 children ­ mean age 9
­ 25 classes in 11 schools in Brisbane
­ Sub-group ­ 22 students have learning difficulties
1. independent measures design
2. cognitive abilities test given to students
3. students split into 38 gender & ability balanced groups
4.…read more

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Study Four: Ireson et al (2002); To examine the effects of setting vs. mixed ability
Aim: Effects of mixed ability groups and sets on attainment and self-image.
Sample: 45 comprehensive schools ­ one cohort ­ year 9 ­ 11 some schools set their
students some didn't.
IV: Set or not set
DV: Attainment and self image
GCSE results were controlled for gender, social disadvantage and prior attainment at
Key stages 1 and 2.…read more


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