Electronic Journal for Inclusive Education


Characterized by work, financial, and family demands, nontraditional students are an increasing population in university teacher education programs. Typical teacher education programs include at least one course on the education of students with special needs, and faculty may address perceived weaknesses of the course textbook by supplementing it with "inclusion literature," narratives written by or about individuals with disabilities. Although inclusion literature has been documented to be of value, to date there has been no research that specifically examined the use of inclusion literature with nontraditional pre-service teachers. This qualitative study examined the impact of inclusion literature on a population of nontraditional pre-service teachers enrolled in a required special education survey course as part of their teacher education program. Findings suggest that although nontraditional pre-service teachers interpret inclusion literature differently than do previously examined populations, its use has value and faculty should consider including it as required reading.