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Module Specifications

Archived Version 2022 - 2023

Module Title
Module Code

Online Module Resources

NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 10
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

This module explores key concepts and theoretical perspectives associated with special educational needs, disability and inclusion, and the attendant implications for policy, legislation and practice. It will support teachers to develop their knowledge, understanding and skills to enact inclusive practice.

Learning Outcomes

1. Examine the influence of context on definitions of special need and on the nature and purpose of different models of curriculum
2. Critically analyse the issues in policy, curriculum planning and practice within special and inclusive education
3. • Use their knowledge of the core issues, background and history of inclusive and special education to inform their study, discussions and practice
4. • Demonstrate their understanding of the concepts of inclusion and current debates on the issue by stating their considered personal perspectives
5. • Discuss the key principles of inclusive education and the factors associated with the successful practice of inclusion
6. • State the rationale for early intervention and the factors which determine its efficacy
7. • Apply their knowledge of the principles of assessment when administering diagnostic assessments to their learners
8. • Promote, develop and foster collaborative partnerships with all those working with their learners
9. • Use a variety of teaching and learning strategies, structure appropriate learning contexts and select resources, adapting where necessary, to suit the individual needs of learners they teach
10. • Plan and teach programmes in the specified curricular areas which are suited to the interests, strengths and areas for development of their learners
11. • Develop IEPs/Individual Support Plans for learners with SEN / identified support needs in collaboration with the learners, their parents, support/class/subject teachers and all those involved in the pupil’s education including the following elements: identification of learner interests, strengths and areas for development and the development of specific learning targets, appropriate teaching methods and resources, and evaluation of progress

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Independent Study140Independent reading
Directed learning40Asynchronous activities e.g. quizzes, forum postings, etc.
Assignment Completion60Completion of written paper
Total Workload: 250

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Indicative content
• Inform students of the background and history of the development of special education internationally and in Ireland; the range of special educational needs, issues pertaining to designation of SEN categories and the core issues relating to special education (e.g. role of parents, legislation, rights, values, policy, provision) • Review and define the concepts of inclusion in education and examine the origins of inclusive education and current debated and dilemmas associated with this movement • Acquaint students with the key principles of inclusive education and the essential practices associated with successful inclusions based on research findings and best practice • Examine the current literature on early intervention in terms of its rationale and efficacy and examine the wider policy context supporting early intervention initiatives • Introduce students to the principles and purposes of assessment, planning and recording • Encourage students to foster a collaborative ethos and holistic approach to working in their schools and with all those involved with their learners with special educational needs • Assist students in the selection and adaptation of suitable approaches and methodologies with particular reference to differentiation for individual learner needs • Encourage students to examine the implications arising for teaching and learning in order to effectively deliver the curriculum • Guide students in devising a suitable individual education plan (IEP) / support plan in collaboration with others, and to incorporate a system of recording and evaluating learner progress

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment% Examination Weight%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Reassessment Requirement
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
Indicative Reading List

  • Frederickson, N. & Cline, T.: 2015, Special Educational Needs, Inclusion and Diversity (3rd ed.)., Open University Press., Buckingham,
Other Resources

48978, Research Report, Rose, R. Shevlin, M. Winter, E. & O'Raw, P., 2015, Project IRIS - Inclusive Research in Irish Schools, Trim: National Council for Special Education (NSCE), 48988, Website, National Council for Special Education, 0, Research Reports, NCSE, https://ncse.ie/research-reports, 48989, Website, National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, 0, National Curriculum and Assessment Guidelines, https://ncca.ie/, 48990, Government Circular, Department of Education, 2017, Circular to the Management Authorities of all Mainstream Primary Schools Special Education Teaching Allocation, Department of Education, https://circulars.gov.ie/pdf/circular/education/2017/13.pdf, 48991, Government Circular, Department of Education, 2017, Circular to the Management Authorities of all Post Primary Schools: Secondary, Community and Comprehensive Schools and the Chief Executive Officers of the Education and Training Boards, Department of Education, https://circulars.gov.ie/pdf/circular/education/2017/14.pdf, 48992, Website, Department of Education: National Educational Psychologist Services, 0, NEPS Resources and Guidelines for Teachers, https://www.gov.ie/en/service/5ef45c-neps/,
Programme or List of Programmes