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Title: Dynamic assessment : an exploration of the views of children, parents and teachers
Author: Wills, Nicola
ISNI:       0000 0004 2700 5880
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2008
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A qualitative 'real world' research project was carried out to explore the views of children with special educational needs, their parents and teachers on one aspect of educational psychology practice; the Dynamic Assessment of cognitive skills. The research was carried out in a highly diverse and fully inclusive borough in East London by an educational psychologist employed by the local authority. The views of nine children were sought through semi-structured interviews regarding the process of Dynamic Assessment, supported with innovative tools and techniques to facilitate discussion. The views of eight parents and seven teachers were sought through semi-structured interviews and focus groups regarding the psychological reports produced from Dynamic Assessment. It was found through thematic analysis (Braun and Clark, 2006; Roulston, 2001) of the data that the Dynamic Assessment of cognitive skills provides valuable and useful information for teachers, parents and children with special educational needs themselves. Dynamic Assessment was found to be a positive experience for children with special educational needs due to being child centred, focussed on the process of learning, and giving an experience of success and improvement. It was perceived to impact positively upon the child's emotional well being, self perceptions, learning, behaviour and social relationships directly and through the subsequent intervention of parents and educators. It was also found that Dynamic Assessment goes beyond providing instructionally useful information for parents and teachers to encourage them to move beyond locating the problem and their concerns within the child, to re-conceptualise the child and their special educational needs in context. As a result they become more positive and optimistic about the child and the situation. Dynamic Assessment also impacts upon, and itself supports, changes in parenting and the development of inclusive practice in the classroom and whole school. It is concluded that Dynamic Assessment forms a worthwhile and valuable part of educational psychology practice. Further implications of the findings for educational psychology practice and teaching and learning generally are discussed, whilst methodological issues arising from the research paradigm and involvement of children with special educational needs are explored. Suggestions for future research are presented and the original and distinctive contributions of the research are described.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.App.Ed.Ch.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available