A Synthesis of Instructional Strategies in Geoscience Education Literature That Address Barriers to Inclusion for Students With Disabilities

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Carabajal, I. G., Marshall, A. M., & Atchison, C. L. (2017). A Synthesis of Instructional Strategies in Geoscience Education Literature That Address Barriers to Inclusion for Students With Disabilities. Journal of Geoscience Education, 65(4), 531-541. DOI: 10.5408/16-211.1
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People with disabilities make up the largest minority population in the U.S. yet remain sorely underrepresented in scientific disciplines that require components of field-based training such as the geosciences. This paper provides a critical analysis of broadening participation within geoscience education literature through the use of accessible and inclusive instructional practices that support students with physical and sensory disabilities. Common physical and nonphysical barriers that discourage the full participation of students with disabilities in classroom, laboratory, and field activities are illustrated in this review. In areas of limited reportable data relevant in the geoscience-focused literature, a broader science, technology, engineering, and mathematics perspective is provided. Gaps in the literature were identified to include limited empirical evidence on the effectiveness of inclusive curricular design and the limited opportunities for students with disabilities to participate in advanced, multiday geoscience field trips. The purpose of highlighting this collection of literature is to encourage the use of more equitable and inclusive instructional strategies, including alternative strategies and virtual learning environments that increase access and enhance participation for students with physical and sensory disabilities.

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This page last updated 17 May 2019 - 2:37pm