Empirical paper. Inclusive education and personal development

I Leigh
1999 Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education  
Open-ended questionnaires covering mainstream educational experiences and personal development of deaf and hard-of-hearing adults were analyzed. Half of the 34 deaf and hard-of-hearing respondents altered self-labels based on changes in personal definitions rather than audiological changes. Supportive school environments and coping skills contributed to positive perceptions; nonsupportive school environments and being treated as "different" were viewed negatively. Everyone valued contact with
more » ... lued contact with hearing peers. Contact with deaf peers depended on finding those with similar values. Identification with Deaf culture was nonexistent. Most noteworthy, 24 of 34 participants felt caught between the deaf and hearing worlds, indicating the need for niches in both. Implications for educators are that development of self-confidence and comfort with identity may be enhanced by validating the deafness dimension through opportunities for contact with deaf adults and positive relationships with both deaf and hearing peers.
doi:10.1093/deafed/4.3.236 pmid:15579891 fatcat:btanbrpwfnbibcbxa57avucrhm