ACTION RESEARCH IN TERTIARY EDUCATION: A CASE STUDY OF A STUDENT WITH VISUAL DISABILITY
University of Thessaly (GREECE)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2013 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Conference name: 6th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2013
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:This paper refers to a case study of a student with visual disability while she was dealing with accessibility issues during her studies in tertiary education. In specific, the present study delineates the construction of a collaborative action research project and discusses its results regarding a blind student’s academic and social accessibility within the university. The persons involved in this collaborative scheme were two members of the academic staff, students without disabilities who operated as assistants and the student who had visual disability.
The research design was the scheme of action research and it was included into its strands the following phases:
The selected data were based on observations, semi-structured interviews and reflective reports. In total, the findings of the study emphasized: a. the importance of teaching students with visual disability social skills, b. the lack of information and awareness of the academic staff regarding disability issues, and c. the significant role of differentiated instruction in higher education. Finally, the present work highlights the critical role of action research in conceptualizing educational contexts and situations from a number of different perspectives.
The present study is part of the project "Handedness and Braille Literacy in Individuals with Severe Visual Impairments" is implemented under the "ARISTEIA" Action of the "OPERATIONAL PROGRAMME EDUCATION AND LIFELONG LEARNING" and is co-funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) and National Resources.
Keywords: Action research, tertiary education, visual disability.