Date of Award

2017

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Department

Educational Studies

Sub-Department

Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Ken Vogler

Abstract

The primary purpose of this qualitative research study was to describe the perceptions of middle school special education teachers in regards to the implementation of Unique Learning Systems (ULS) curriculum, a standards-based curriculum and assessment system designed to be used with students with moderate to severe intellectual disabilities. The secondary purpose of this study was to describe the perceptions of the special needs students’ parents. The tertiary purpose was to design an action plan that will enable Ocean Front School District (OFSD) special education administrators and teachers to better determine if ULS’ content, instructional strategies, accommodations and modifications are effective. Data collection included teacher interviews, reflective journaling, checklists to measure the independent participation level of students and fidelity of implementation of the curriculum as well as rating scales to measure parent perceptions. Findings included that parents and teachers perceive that Unique Learning System Curriculum has made a positive impact of the achievement of student’s with cognitive disabilities academic and functional achievement. The proposed action plan included further professional development for special education teachers and paraprofessionals as well as parents.

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