ERIC Number: ED407387
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Sep-30
A Review of Literature: Special Education and Class Size.
McCrea, Linda D.
This review has two parts: the first concerns class size and general education; the second, class size and special education. The general education review is in four sections: (1) foundational class size research; (2) critiques of the foundational works; (3) extended research; and (4) five studies in class size research conducted by states. The second part (on special education) reviews representative samples from an ERIC search of approximately 387 articles. These studies were: a national survey conducted by the University of Minnesota (1989) to document student to teacher ratios; also at the University of Minnesota (1993) an investigation of ratios of less than 15:1; a study conducted by the Virginia State Department of Education (1994) on special education program standards; another study in Virginia (1993) that investigated whether class size and class mix influenced educational outcomes; a New York State Education Department study to evaluate the impact of larger class size on those involved in the special education delivery system; and a study of individual caseloads. The review of these special education studies found that: (1) the maximum student to teacher ratio in special education is usually 15:1; (2) students are generally grouped by academic performance, not by their educational and management needs; (3) smaller classes provide better environments for learning, especially at the elementary level; (4) student achievement and behavior are affected by class size; (5) class size is impacted by other variables, including use of paraprofessionals and teacher experience; and (6) there is no one best teaching methodology to assure students success. (Contains 36 references.) (JLS)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Michigan State Board of Education, Lansing.
Authoring Institution: N/A