This entry examines the conceptualization of special education and the move toward more inclusive forms of schooling.Current perspectives regarding inclusive educational practices have been influenced by past views, a heterogeneity of inclusive ideologies and developments shaped by converging ideas and practices. In other words, there is a historical progression where dominant ideas held at different points in time have shared a dynamic relationship all the while having mutually shaped current and former views and practices.

In the 1950s, the psycho-medical legacy dominated the conceptualization of special needs and promoted the understanding of disability as residing within the individual. The individual with special needs was seen as being “in deficit” and special education in a segregated setting was provided for those in need. Its shortcoming was ...

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