Disability Studies in Education

An interdisciplinary field of inquiry, disability studies in education proposes that disability is socially, culturally, and politically constructed. A subset of disability studies more broadly, disability studies in education critically examines how disability and schooling intersect. Disability studies in education is often critical of special education practices that appropriate medical model views of disability (models that suggest disability is a deficit or tragedy to be overcome). It explores the intersections of education and disability across all grade levels, ranging from preschool to higher education.

Following its origins in the 1990s, disability studies in education has continued to grow rapidly and to change the way education, rehabilitation, and children’s rights are understood and approached in learning environments. This entry offers background on the emergence of disability ...

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