ERIC Number: EJ1171033
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Abstractor: As Provided
'Pulled in off the Street' and Available: What Qualifications and Training Do Teacher Assistants Really Need?
International Journal of Inclusive Education, v22 n3 p217-234 2018
As more Teacher Assistants (TAs) take on the responsibility of supporting students with disability and learning difficulties questions arise as to the appropriate qualifications for such work, the adequacy of training, and the policy and practice of schools employing TAs. A qualitative study, informed by multiple perspectives, was conducted in four mainstream primary schools in an Australian capital city to examine the actual qualifications of the TAs as opposed to those required by their employer. Despite role changes since the 1990s, TA qualifications remained unchanged and TAs could be employed with no post-school qualifications. Little training was provided, no training policy existed and access to training across schools differed. Participants' perspectives on the qualifications and training required by TAs also varied. While this paper examines qualifications and training of TAs in Australia, findings are relevant to educators internationally where TAs support students with disability and learning difficulties. Tying TA qualifications to salary incentives and a career structure in which TAs are responsible for supplemental instruction only, is recommended. A Certificate IV in Education Support or School Age Education and Care, complemented by literacy and numeracy tests, are recommended minimum requirements. Finally, teachers should be included in TA recruitment and supervision.
Descriptors: Disabilities, Teacher Aides, Qualifications, Training, Learning Problems, Qualitative Research, Mainstreaming, Foreign Countries, Elementary Schools, Elementary School Teachers, Questionnaires, Semi Structured Interviews
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 530 Walnut Street Suite 850, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Tel: 215-625-8900; Fax: 215-207-0050; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Elementary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A