Accommodating Learners With Dyslexia in English Language Teaching in Sri Lanka: teachers' knowledge, attitudes and challenges

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As it is estimated that 10% of the world population has dyslexia or related learning difficulties, it is vital for language teachers to have a thorough understanding of such difficulties and of inclusive teaching techniques. It is believed that teacher training can increase teachers’ knowledge of dyslexia and inclusion, inculcate positive attitudes among them on inclusion and increase their self-efficacy beliefs. The study discussed in this paper analysed if a teacher
training programme aimed at a group of ELT professionals in Sri Lanka could do the same and also the challenges that they would face in introducing inclusive practices into their context. A questionnaire and interview data revealed that the teacher training programme was able to change teachers’ negative attitudes towards dyslexia, increase their knowledge of dyslexia and inclusive practices and increase their readiness to implement inclusive classroom techniques. The findings also revealed that institutional barriers such as a rigid examination system and lack of flexibility in the curriculum may hinder how inclusive practices are implemented. In addition, negative socio-cultural ideology and some practical classroom problems may also affect implementation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)630-654
Number of pages24
JournalTESOL Quarterly
Issue number3
Early online date28 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2019

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