Educational psychologists' support roles regarding the implementation of inclusive education in Zimbabwe
Abstract This article focuses on a phenomenological study of trainee/educational psychologists’ lived experiences regarding the support roles in the implementation of inclusive education practices in Zimbabwe. In‐depth phenomenological interviews were done with 16 purposely selected participants (13 trainee/educational psychologists located at three administrative offices and three experts on inclusion from three universities) and data was transcribed verbatim and thematically analyzed. Monthly/annual reports from trainee/educational psychologists were used as reference material. Three major themes emerged from the support roles: (1) diverse views on inclusion; (2) critical roles, successful and unsuccessful experiences in implementing inclusive education; and (3) impact of experiences on rendering support services. Key findings indicate that advocacy and consultation, assessment and placement, and in‐service training were viewed as critical and successful experiences, whereas negative teacher attitudes and limited resources were viewed as barriers toward the implementation of inclusive education practices. The impact of experiences indicates inadequacy in the provision of support services. Annual reports of trainee/educational psychologists indicated inadequate ongoing training on inclusive education practices. These findings are discussed in relation to the inclusive education literature.
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