The educational experiences of five former students with vision impairment participating in education in Papua New Guinea: a qualitative study

Aiwa, James, and Pagliano, Paul (2013) The educational experiences of five former students with vision impairment participating in education in Papua New Guinea: a qualitative study. Journal of the South Pacific Educators in Vision Impairment, 6 (1). pp. 63-70.

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Abstract

In this study a qualitative research methodology was used to investigate the educational experiences of five former students with vision impairment (VI) in PNG who received specialist services during their schooling. The participants were purposively chosen to provide the widest possible range of information (for example: three female, two male; one with low vision, four functionally blind; with each participant from a different geographical region of PNG). Semi-structured 60-minute one-to-one interviews were employed to explore whether suitable accommodations and modifications were made for the students and to assess whether or not they thought they received an inclusive and an appropriate education. The semi-structured questionnaire was developed to allow respondents to freely express their own opinions. Each interview was conducted in the participant's own natural environment and in their preferred language, i.e., either English or Tok Pisin (Talk Pidgin). Results indicate a difference in quality of service for former students who were functionally blind compared to that provided for the student with low vision. Three of the functionally blind students found it necessary to leave their families, home communities, language and culture to attend school away from their villages, whereas the student with low vision continued to live in his own local community. The functionally blind students were provided with alternative media such as braille whereas no specialist provisions were made available for the student with low vision. All five former students reported a lack of service provision that focused on developing such independence skills as Orientation and Mobility and only one student who was functionally blind, the recipient of sponsorship by a wealthy Australian, felt he had achieved his best possible outcome.

Item ID: 32597
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
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ISSN: 1443-7597
Date Deposited: 20 May 2014 00:14
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130312 Special Education and Disability @ 100%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939907 Special Needs Education @ 100%
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