Master's Theses

Department

Psychology

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Abstract

The purpose of this paper was to (1) determine whether teacher attitudes held by special education teachers differ significantly from those of the regular classroom teacher, and (2) determine whether these teachers differ significantly in the attitudes they express toward the educable mentally retarded child. The subjects used in this study were a randomly selected group of fifty elementary school teachers from the state of Kansas. Half of these teachers served in special education units for the educable mentally retarded, and the remaining twenty-five teachers were employed in the regular classroom. This was an uncontrolled group as to age, experience, knowledge of exceptionalities, teaching field, marital and parental status. The Minnesota Teacher Attitude Inventory was used as a measure of general teacher attitudes found to be associated with teacher-pupil rapport. A behavioral description checklist was employed to measure attitudes expressed toward the educable mentally retarded child. In an attempt to analyze the attitude differences expressed by these two groups on the MTAI and the behavioral description checklist, a t test for means was employed. Analysis of the data justified the rejection of the null hypothesis for both methods of measurement. The difference between the means for the two groups on the MTAI was significant beyond the .05 level of confidence and on the behavioral description checklist the difference was found to be beyond the .01. Correlations were calculated between years of experience and scores obtained on both measures for the two types of teachers. Only one correlation coefficient was significant beyond the predetermined .05 level. A correlation of .47 was found to exist between years of experience and negative attitudes expressed toward the EMR child by the special education teacher. This correlation coefficient was significant beyond the .01 level of confidence.

Advisor

Jerry Harper

Date of Award

Spring 1966

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access

Rights

© 1966 Ronald R. Willis

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