Date of Award
EdD Education Leadership, Management and Policy
Education Leadership, Management and Policy
Martin Finkelstein, Ph.D.
Katie Smith, Ph.D.
Wendiann Sethi, Ph.D.
Students with Disabilities (SWD), Student Support Services (SSD), Faculty Perceptions, Faculty Comfort
The increase in the number of students with disabilities enrolled in institutions of higher education poses challenges for institutions and their instructional staff. A first step in meeting these challenges is to uncover what professional development support faculty need before teaching students with disabilities. This study examined the instructional support requirements for faculty members teaching students with disabilities. This case study also examined university faculty members’ attitudes towards teaching students with disabilities. Prior research has investigated colleges and universities has shown that further investigation into faculty members’ knowledge, the institutional support faculty receive to teach students with disabilities, attitudinal favorability, and faculty’s comfort level in teaching students with disabilities. This study examined the three constructs (knowledge, institutional support, and attitudinal favorability) that affect faculty’s comfort level in teaching students with disabilities. The research questions this study addressed are:
1. How do faculty assess the professional development support offered by their university for teaching students with disabilities?
2. How knowledgeable do faculty feel they are about teaching students with disabilities?
3. How do faculty perceive the potential for success of students with learning disabilities?
4. What is the relationship between institutional professional development support and faculty’s reported comfort level in teaching students with disabilities?
5. How is the relationship between institutional support and comfort affected by prior knowledge, attitudinal favorability, and demographic factors?
Seventy-three faculty at a private doctoral university in the Northeast responded to a survey measuring the three independent variables of institutional support, faculty knowledge, and attitudinal favorability, as well as the outcome variable of self-reported comfort. Qualtrics was used to distribute the surveys to faculty and collect the data. Chi Sqaure was employed to determine if there is a s significant difference in the ratings on the three constructs by the demographic variables. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to assess the statistical significance of the contribution of the three idependent variables to faculty self-reported comfort.
Polk, Douglas, "College Faculty Preparation and Comfort in Teaching Students With Disabilities" (2021). Seton Hall University Dissertations and Theses (ETDs). 2894.