Teachers’ Attitudes Towards Children Who Use AAC in Italian Primary Schools

Elena Radici, Vahé Heboyan, Fabrizia Mantovani, Gianluca De Leo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Early Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) interventions in school environments aim to support the development of the communication skills of children with complex communication needs. Goals of this study were to analyse the teachers’ attitudes towards children using AAC in primary schools in Italy and their perceptions of the barriers and the benefits of using AAC. Two groups of teachers, those with and without AAC experience, responded to an online survey. The five scales of the Teacher Attitude Scale (TAS) questionnaire and two open-ended questions were used to compare the attitudes and the perceptions between the groups of teachers. Results showed that there was a significant difference among the two groups for two of the five scales of the TAS questionnaire. Both groups reported similar barriers and benefits and indicated the use of AAC as being the main barrier. In conclusion, having experience with children who use AAC in class impacts the teachers’ perceptions of their own abilities and the teachers’ perceptions of the abilities of the children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)284-297
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Disability, Development and Education
Volume66
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 4 2019

Keywords

  • AAC
  • Augmentative and Alternative Communication
  • Teachers’ attitudes
  • barriers and benefits
  • early childhood education
  • general education teachers
  • special education teachers
  • special needs
  • teachers’ experience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Education
  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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