Date of Award

5-2005

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

Abstract

Teachers may be placing students with autism in inclusive and self-contained settings based on teachers' perceptions and students' social characteristics. The purpose of this study is to investigate whether the biases and experiences of elementary teachers affect the placement of students with autism. All of the subjects in this study are teachers from a small suburban school district in Western New York. According to the findings of this study, negative characteristics of students with autism did not affect the placement of students with autism. However, perceived characteristics of students with autism did significantly impact placement. If teachers are aware of the impact that their biases can have on the placement of students with autism based on their perceived social characteristics, the process could become much more reliable.

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