Beginning early childhood education teachers' struggle with inclusion in Turkey

Akdag Z., Haser C.

ASIA PACIFIC JOURNAL OF EDUCATION, vol.37, no.2, pp.219-231, 2017 (SSCI) identifier identifier


The purpose of this study was to investigate Turkish early childhood education teachers' perception of inclusion before they started their teaching profession and to explore their experiences with the children with disabilities in their first year of teaching. Sixteen Turkish pre-service teachers were first interviewed when they completed the teacher education programme about their expectations of inclusion practices in their future career. Four participants among the 16 teachers started to teach children with disabilities in their first year of teaching. Then, they were interviewed about their experiences at the end of the first and second semesters of teaching. Findings revealed that Turkish pre-service teachers displayed positive attitudes towards inclusion before they started teaching. However, they had negative experiences with children with disabilities in their first year due to the misimplementation of the inclusion policy and being inexperienced about the inclusion process, and began to question the effectiveness of inclusion. Implications for the inclusion policy and teacher education programmes are discussed.