Picture child's feet next to pens, pencils and paper

Open Access research that is helping to improve educational outcomes for children

Strathprints makes available scholarly Open Access content by researchers in the School of Education, including those researching educational and social practices in curricular subjects. Research in this area seeks to understand the complex influences that increase curricula capacity and engagement by studying how curriculum practices relate to cultural, intellectual and social practices in and out of schools and nurseries.

Research at the School of Education also spans a number of other areas, including inclusive pedagogy, philosophy of education, health and wellbeing within health-related aspects of education (e.g. physical education and sport pedagogy, autism and technology, counselling education, and pedagogies for mental and emotional health), languages education, and other areas.

Explore Open Access education research. Or explore all of Strathclyde's Open Access research...

Talking about learning disability : promoting positive perceptions of people with intellectual disabilities in Scottish schools

Maguire, Roseann and Wilson, Alastair and Jahoda, Andrew (2018) Talking about learning disability : promoting positive perceptions of people with intellectual disabilities in Scottish schools. International Journal of Developmental Disabilities. ISSN 2047-3877

[img] Text (Maguire-etal-IJDD-2018-Talking-about-learning-disability-promoting-positive-perceptions)
Accepted Author Manuscript
Restricted to Repository staff only until 12 March 2019.

Download (693kB) | Request a copy from the Strathclyde author


Pupils with intellectual disabilities are one of the most bullied groups in the school system and in local communities. Moreover, young people also play a significant role in hate crimes against people with intellectual disabilities of all ages beyond the school gates. This paper describes the development of a research informed program of lessons for children in mainstream secondary schools, aimed at counteracting bullying towards people with intellectual disabilities by promoting empathy and more positive attitudes towards them. A literature review, a review of current practice, and the experiences and views of young people with intellectual disabilities and their families all contributed to the development of the program. Data from subsequent piloting and feasibility work were used to finalize the program which consists of the following five lessons concerning: (i) difference and disability, (ii) an understanding of intellectual disability, (iii) the nature and impact of disablist bullying towards people with intellectual disabilities, and (iv) opportunities for inclusion. One conclusion from this work is that that there needs to be further research to explore the impact of school-based interventions, promoting an understanding of people with intellectual disabilities, in the wider community. Teachers delivering the lessons may have greater influence than transitory campaigns to counteract bullying and promote positive attitudes towards people with intellectual disabilities. However, a first step is to ensure that teachers delivering the lessons have an understanding of people with intellectual disabilities.