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Analysis of vocational education for students with autistic disorder

Matevž Stanovnik (2016) Analysis of vocational education for students with autistic disorder. MSc thesis.

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    Autistic disorder is a disorder of communication, social interaction and imagination which considerably influences all the levels and areas of living. This master's thesis will explore vocational education of students with autistic disorder (henceforth, students with AD) attending Zavod za gluhe in naglušne Ljubljana (henceforth, ZGNL). The main goal of this research was to examine the implementation of the open curriculum (henceforth, OC) in vocational education programmes in mainstream vocational schools and in ZGNL, and on the basis of this study propose customizations and adequate ways of implementing vocational programmes for students with AD. For this purpose, I analysed the guidelines and the actual content of OC in mainstream vocational schools. I studied the implementation of the customized content of OC in ZGNL and conducted in-depth research into the key differences between the implementation of OC in ZGNL and the implementation of OC in mainstream vocational schools. I also looked for solutions in examples of good practice in other countries. I analysed the research performed in numerous European countries, dealing with the education of students with AD. I undertook comparative research of the guidelines from other countries regarding the implementation of customized content for students with AD, research into how the implementation of customized content of OC influences students with AD in ZGNL, and finally, research into whether it is possible to design a model of trial implementation of OC content which could be used for the majority of students with AD. In the end, I did a case study of a student with AD who was included in a new OC module called Priprava na življenje (Getting Ready for Life, henceforth, GRL). The module includes communication, socialization, and it is primarily geared towards finding vocational interests and the strong areas of the individual student with AD. The main goal was to determine the spectrum of the student's autistic disorder, issues, problems, reactions, way of thinking, interests, and above all, strong areas through the implementation of GRL lessons for the purpose of correct placement into a suitable vocational programme. At first I learned about the student's specific characteristics, reactions, problems in the way of thinking, level of socialization and communication. Subsequently, I tested the student in different areas of general socialization and communication. I subjected him to unexpected situations outside of school. In the final part I intensively tested the student in all of his strong areas. I moved the implementation from the classroom into customized workshops. In three years of intensive work with the student with AD, I became familiar with many of his disorders as well as his strong and weak areas quite well. I learned about him to the point of being able to predict his reactions. Finally, I also learned about his strong areas; the final result was a placement into a programme more suited to his needs. The findings confirmed my supposition that a special programme customized for students with AD can be developed, but we nevertheless need to take into account the fact that a generalized application of all the customizations and special content of OC is not possible due to the heterogeneity among students with AD. The analysis and the results of the case study offer a good starting point for further research.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: vocational education, open curriculum, educational programmes, autistic disorder
    Number of Pages: 127
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    doc. dr. Martina OzbičMentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=11243593)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 3937
    Date Deposited: 17 Oct 2016 13:31
    Last Modified: 17 Oct 2016 13:31
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/3937

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