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ERIC Number: EJ922792
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 7
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 25
Issues of Human Development and Special Education: Students Communicating across Developing and Developed Nations
Smith, Nancy McK.; Pickert, Sarah
Journal of International Special Needs Education, v14 n1 p15-21 2011
Children with disabilities live in every country of the world. Training personnel to provide education and rehabilitative services to these children, no matter where they live, is a continuing challenge for the profession. This paper describes a human development course in a program designed for an international religious organization based in Belgium for men from developing nations who will work with individuals with disabilities in Sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast Asia, and South America. One of the goals of the course was to help students explore the concept of human development and the impact of cultural context on how people characterize and treat a disability. We recognized its importance for educators worldwide and incorporated some assignments in the same course taught simultaneously in an American pre-service teacher education program. We give examples of joint assignments completed by these two groups who worked from a distance with one another to illustrate one way to prepare international special education professionals. We required that the two classes work together on three assignments using e-mail and Blackboard[TM], an e-learning web-based course management system. Our hope was that both groups would gain a better understanding of the influence of culture on development through direct conversation with partners in the other class. This paper describes the joint assignments and students' responses to them. It also discusses implications for designing programs that prepare regular and special educators who will work in many countries and/or with children from many cultures.
Division of International Special Education and Services, Council for Exceptional Children. 2900 Crystal Drive Suite 1000, Arlington, VA 22202. Tel: 888-232-7733; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Asia; Belgium; South America; United States