International Journal of Innovative Social & Science Education Research 3(1&2):20-51, Apr-Jun.2015
© SEAHI PUBLICATIONS, 2015
PERCEPTION OF STUDENTS AND INSTRUCTORS TOWARD STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES: ISSUES AND CHALLENGES IN IMPLEMENTATION OF INTEGRATION PROGRAM
BIRHANU Moges (PhD)
Department of Psychology
Adama Science and Technology University, Assela, Ethiopia
The purpose of this study was to examine sociological, psychological, socio-economic, cultural and societal students and instructors perceptions of towards persons with disabilities. This study used a descriptive survey method and a stratified sampling technique. To achieve the purpose of the study, a total of 119(with disability (39), non disabling students (40) and instructors (40), that is m=56, f=63 participants), were included in the study. The participants were selected from the three experienced universities (Addis Ababa, Haramaya & Adama). A three-point attitude scale questionnaire consisting of 20 items with some open -ended items) and a focus group discussion had been used to collect the data. Data analysis was performed using SPSS-version19; and were organized and interpreted by using mean, percentage and t-test. The major perceived challenges to disfavors disability were related to communication problem, perception of the participants about situations in the university and to feeling of incompetence in facing challenges that may be encountered in the instructional process. The relation of the students with disability versus non disabling student to change of attitude was not statistically significant. While the relationship of the independent variables can be seen as interactive, the degree to which each variable has contributed to change of attitude did not appear clearly. It found that issues and challenges include a lack of knowledge about disabilities, instructors and students misconceptions, negative attitudes, and insufficiency of effective educational tools at sample universities. Hence, the result suggests that effective measures need to be taken to reduce challenges and cultivate positive attitudes towards students with disability by establishing a harmonious relationship between and among instructors and students. Further research is also required to examine the relative contribution of the demographic variables to attitudes towards disability. The study further provides suggestions on how the university can enhance equalization of learning opportunities regardless of students with disables.
Key words: Attitudes, challenges, perceptions, people with disabilities, university, instructors, students.