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Title: The utility of educational psychologist's reports within a local authority, according to its major stakeholders
Author: Hull, Amanda
ISNI:       0000 0004 2700 698X
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2010
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Background and Aims: Report writing is an activity that forms a large part of the work of an Educational Psychologist (EP) and is part of the mechanism to help achieve the five outcomes of Every Child Matters (2003). Reports are utilised by a number of stakeholders including Special Educational Needs Coordinators (SENCo) Special Educational Needs (SEN) Panel members and Parents and Carers. It was the aim of this research to establish the views of such stakeholders regarding the utility of EP reports. This research has Positive Psychology and Solution Focused approach underpinnings. Sample: In total, there were 219 questionnaires sent to the SENCo group with 98 responses (n=98), and 18 returned out of 50 sent to Parents/Carers (n=18), and finally with 20 of the 30 questionnaires sent to the SEN Panel members (n=20), giving an overall total of n=136. Method: This evaluative, real world enquiry employed a mixed methodology approach, using a Likert Scale to collect quantitative data, and using an open question within the questionnaire to gather qualitative data; this data was analysed using thematic analysis. Results: The main results were that: a) The SENCo group value the use of psychology within reports, reports that help make plans for action, reports that are easily accessible and reports that give them new information. The SEN Panel group and the Parent/Carer group value reports that give them new information, reports that allow them to make plans for action, and reports that are presented well, b) although there are subtle group differences, overall: all groups agreed that EP reports that they have read give a good understanding of a young persons difficulties, are relevant and to the point, have appropriate language for SENCos and SEN Panel, but not always for Parents/Carers, make good links between the young persons difficulties and plans for action, give a good understanding of the young persons strengths, give useful guidance, offer a unique perspective to the SEN Panel and Parents/Carers, but not always to the SENCos and are easy to read for SENCos and SEN Panel, but not always Parents/Carers. Conclusion: This study has addressed some gaps in previous research in this area by using a variety of stakeholders to EP reports, and it has used their experiences rather than using hypothetical or example reports. This research points towards that fact that the stakeholders of the EP reports within the Local Authority at the heart of this investigation all value similar aspects of an EP report, and EP reports should meet service users needs given that they contain new information, plans for action, are well structured and accessible and contain psychological elements.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Ed.Ch.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available