Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)


Education and Human Development


This qualitative study was designed to document the characteristics of peer interaction in students with special needs . The qualitative nature of this study was most beneficial because while analyzing data from the interviews and observations, I had obtained thick, rich descriptive data on the behaviors of a student with special needs during play.

An observational study took place in an inclusive classroom with three students with special needs, and the typically developing peers with whom they interacted with during play. These observations allowed for the collection and interpretation of the ways in which students with special needs interact with peers during play. In addition to observation, I conducted a focus group interview. This interview took place with specific professionals within the elementary school. The collection and interpretation of this interview provided differing perspectives on my research questions .

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