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Approaching Inclusion as Social Practice: Processes of Inclusion and Exclusion

Abstract

The article presents the results of a review of international research investigating mechanisms and processes of inclusion and exclusion as an ongoing part of social practice in a school context. The review forms part of a research project investigating the social practices of inclusive education in primary and lower-secondary education (age 6–16) in public schools as constituted by processes of inclusion and exclusion. The project aims to shift the scientific focus of research in inclusive education from the development of pedagogical and didactic practice to the importance of community construction through inclusion and exclusion processes. The project arises in context of Danish education policy, while the review looked for international research findings on the limits between inclusion and exclusion: how they are drawn, by whom, for what reasons, and for whose benefit? On the background of the review, we conclude that there seems to be a pattern of inclusive school practice leading to a specific social order that limits inclusion. The review also shows that the construction of the ideal student through various kinds of markers has a huge impact on these limits. A twin-track approach that combines research in the development of inclusive learning environments with research in the constitution of social practice in a school context will produce knowledge of the relation between inclusive school practice and the reproduction of social structures and patterns of inequality.

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Attitude of Parents toward Female-Child Secondary Education in Sokoto State, Nigeria: Implications for Counselling

Abstract

The study was set out to investigate the attitude of parents toward female-child secondary education in Sokoto State, Nigeria. One research question and one hypothesis were formulated to guide the study. The study is a descriptive survey and made use of ex-post facto design. The researcher made use of purposive sampling technique to select 270 parents from the urban and 270 parents from the rural areas of Sokoto State. The researcher made use of an instrument adapted from that of Terhemba and Umaru 2015. The instrument is known as “Attitude of Parents Toward Female Child Secondary Education Questionnaire” (APTFCSEQ). The APTFCSEQ had a reliability coefficient of 0.81. The instrument had facial and content validity. It also had language appropriateness. The researcher used four (4) research Assistants to administer 540 copies of the questionnaire on the respondents. All the 540 copies of the questionnaire were retrieved showing 100 percent return rate. The data generated from the field were collated and the mean score analysis for the 15 items was carried out in order to provide answer to the research question raised in the study. 2.5 was chosen as the benchmark for either disagreeing or agreeing with each of the 15 items. The t-test statistics was used to test the hypothesis at 0.05 level of significance. The investigation found out that parents in Sokoto State have shown unfavourable attitude toward female-child secondary education. It found out that there is no significant difference between parents in the urban and rural areas in their attitude toward female-child secondary education. This finding has shown that whether the parent is in urban or rural area, all of them have expressed their opinion in the same direction. One of the recommendations of the study is that parents in Sokoto State should show favourable attitude toward female-child secondary education.

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CEF Professional Profile as an Instrument in Language Needs Assessment for Business Companies

Abstract

The switch form a centralized economy to free trade during the past two decades in Albania as well as efforts to be integrated into the European Union have led to the growing prevalence of English language, which has become the leading lingua franca for communication between experts not only at international but also national level, as various business documents, contracts, reports, etc. are largely used from Economics graduates in their daily work. This paper seeks to create a Professional Profile (P.P.)for business graduates employed mainly in manufacturing companies operating in international business. Using the P.P. of the Common European Framework of References (CEFR), it identifies English language skills that graduates of Economics, employed in business companies use more often in their working environments and the communication difficulties faced by employees in carrying out the required work. Through interviews, questionnaires and language audit, the study yields vast data on the communication situations mostly needed and used in companies in their everyday work. These data are an input for syllabus design in the field of teaching English for Specific Purposes since they lay the foundation of a syllabus which is based on the real need of the students and the labour market for English Language and communication

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Cognitive Strategies, Motivation to Learning, Levels of Wellbeing and Risk of Drop-out: An Empirical Longitudinal Study for Qualifying Ongoing University Guidance Services

Abstract

The paper concerns a longitudinal empirical study aiming to establish the relation between certain factors that facilitate (or sometimes hinder) academic achievement such as motivation to study, the cognitive strategies employed and the levels of wellness or distress expressed by indicators like anxiety and depression. It thus aimed to identify the role of these factors on the risk of student drop-out. The study was carried out on a sample of 68 self-selected students enrolled in various degree courses at “Roma Tre” University, who had fully completed the three consecutive surveys geared to investigating their academic experience over a one-year period. The measurement tools used assessed: a) “drop-out intentions” (Hardre & Reeve Scale, 2003); b) “wellness/distress levels”, (Adult Self-Report ASR; Achenbach & Rescorla, 2003); c) cognitive/study strategies (self-regulated knowledge; Manganelli, Alivernini, Mallia & Biasi, 2015); d) motivational aspects (Academic Motivation Scale AMS, validated in Italy by Alivernini and Lucidi (2008). The results show how that the drop-out risk is linked to high levels of depression or distress, poor competence in cognitive strategies adopted, and high levels of “Amotivation” and “External Motivation”. On the basis of the above empirical evidence we propose starting up specific ongoing actions within the university guidance services in order to simultaneously improve wellbeing through emotional support, redefine decisions in the study path in line with personal motivation, and develop adequate cognitive strategies to devise a functional study method.

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Dissemination of Demographic and Socio-Economic Developments in Tirana with Special Attention to Youth Education

Abstract

Tirana, the capital of Albania, has a population of 420,000 inhabitants, with a surface area of 40 km2 and a population density of 10.5 thousand inhabitants. From the territorial point of view of the organization, Tirana has 11 administrative units. Half of the population in Tirana is less than 35 years old and half, more than 35 years old. Tirana has the highest level of socio-economic developments in the country and most of the domestic migrants who after the change of economic systems in 1990, are located in Tirana. The article analyzes the level of demographic and socio-economic developments in Tirana according to its 11 administrative units, their inequalities and similarities, with particular attention to the education of young people, the enrollment of students in secondary school after completing nine year basic education. Although Tirana has the highest socio-economic development in the country, its administrative units have quite different levels of development. The net enrollment rate at secondary school for students who have completed nine years of basic education and enroll in the secondary is low; (only 67% of students) compared with net enrollment rate at secondary school in EU countries over 85%). A student in Tirana who has a difficult economic situation, parents with low education level, school far away, the absence of one or both parents in the family, many household members, is much more likely not to enroll in secondary school, after completing basic obligatory education, nine years education. Economic and social developments in Tirana highlight a development of Tirana with many profiles. From the 11 administrative units in five-of them, the developments are relatively lower than in the other six administrative units. The less developed administrative units in Tirana are: the 6th and 11th units and the highest developments administrative unites are the 10th and 5th units. In Unit 6, one in seven people are poor although in Unit 10 one in 25 people are poor. To improve the development, it should be implemented concrete programs and projects with territorial approaches; Education has an essential role to play out of poverty and change the quality of life. This role should be empowered by the state and families by becoming more and more vulnerable to the ideology of education and the quality of education. There are used data from Census 2011 and Living Standard Measurement Survey, LSMS 2012. Descriptive, factorial, cluster analysis and regression methods were used for the analysis of sociodemographic and economic developments. For data processing were used Spss, Stata and Matlab.

Open access
The Health Behaviour Inventory: Initial Development, Factor Structure and Evidence of Reliability

Abstract

This study explored the factor structure and reliability of a new Health Behaviour Inventory (HBI) to assess the health behaviour of adults. Data in this study were collected from a total of 581 postgraduate students of the University of Cape Coast. The HBI was subjected to principal component factor analysis with Varimax (Kaiser Normalization). The Kaiser Meyer–Olkin measure was used to verify the sampling adequacy for the factor analysis, which yielded KMO of .808. This indicated that the sample size was adequate and factor analysis could be performed on the data set. Bartlett’s test of Sphericity (χ2 = 8133.626, p = 0.000) was significant for the sample. The analysis yielded six factors with robust reliabilities. The six factors were: alcohol intake, smoking, dietary behaviour, physical exercise, salt intake and weight management. With respect to the reliability of the instrument, the HBI items yielded a Cronbach’s alpha of .792 for the total scale. The exploratory factor analyses demonstrated good factor structure and internal consistency. However, since this is the first study to explore the HBI structure, the researchers recommended that further investigations into the psychometric properties (such as the predictive validity) of the instrument be carried out.

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J.S. Bach’s “Anna Magdalena” as a Basic Tool for the Development of Beginner Pianists

Abstract

The following paper aims to analyse the notebook ‘Anna Magdalena’ as a means for the development of specific knowledge and skills concerning teaching of Baroque and more specifically Bach style, for the beginner pianist. The focus of the paper is oriented towards examining the notebook, and providing a fresh perspective for its teaching from a pedagogical standpoint. Moreover, the paper aims to show various modes of teaching applied to the most popular pieces in the notebook. The author exhaustively lists widespread performer issues relating to the baroque’s technique, specifically, Bachian stylistic perception and attempts to show the ways in which these pieces can be taught. The study will be based on practice-led research methodology.

Open access
Language and Ideology in the Context of Language Policy of Albanian Language

Abstract

This paper discusses the significantly tight relations which exist between ideology and language. It emphasizes that language and ideology are intertwined since ideology provides the framework within which a linguistic message is constructed and expressed. The influence of ideology is noted in language policy and language planning efforts since it enables actions taken by a certain social group to standardize a particular language. Another realm in which the influence of ideology becomes noticeable is the realm of discourse. Ideology is at best expressed through discourse structures. This type of ideological influence can be noticed in the case of Albanian language standardization process in which ideology served two functions: supporting the language policy and helping to build discourse rhetoric with which language policy was elaborated and promoted to the public within former Socialist Albania.

Open access
Perspectives of Pre-School Teachers on Television Viewing in Determining Behavioral Tendencies among Preschoolers in Kenya

Abstract

The present study determinedperspectives of pre-school teachers on television viewing in determining behavioral tendencies among preschoolers in Kenya. The study was guided by Albert Bandura’s Social Learning Theory. The target population of the study comprised of one head teacher, three ECDE teachers. Saturated sampling technique was used to sample 3 pre-school teachers.15 preschoolers were sampled using Purposive sampling technique after putting them into three stratus of those from rural, urban and more urban areas, which comprised of 20, 20 and 10 preschoolers from each stratum respectively. The researcher used interview schedules, observation schedules and focus group discussion guides as the study instruments. Validity of the instruments was ensured by seeking expert judgments of the supervisors and trustworthiness of qualitative data was also ensured. Thematic analysis was employed to analyze the data. The study findings revealed that there was increased physical aggression among children. Though; some children were also empathetic and loving. The finding also established an increased engagement in indoor and outdoor activities by the children. The results further showed an increased language development among children. Moreover, there was also enhanced mutual relationship realized among the learners. The study recommended that; pre-school teachers should encourage parents to engage their children in watching educational TV programs while at home, this was because the study findings revealed that children who watched television had well developed language and also performed well academically. Parents should limit TV viewing time per day and totally banning programs that are too violent or offensive by checking the television listings and programs ahead of time to ensure age appropriate programs, this was because the study findings revealed that children had long hours of TV watching.

Open access
The Relationship between Attachment, Stress and Academic Success in Albanian Students

Abstract

Stress is a serious obstacle for a good school performance. For this reason a considerable number of studies have been conducted. Meanwhile, attachment is considered as a basic borned biological system (Siegel, 2001). There is a correlation between stress and attachment according to the studies. When it comes to student academic success, the methods to measure it are varied. One of the most commonly used is the average. Likewise, even when the relationship between the average of results and stress was considered, a correlational relationship was found, between academic success and appeasement. These study researches, as will be discussed below, are carried out in different contexts. But results for this topic in the Albanian context do not yet exist. Therefore, the aims of this study are to shed light on a topic that is still unexplored in the Albanian context. It was extended to six public Albanian Universities, as follows: Tirana University, Aleksander Moisiu University Durres, University “Alkesander Xhuvani” Elbasan, University “Fan S.Noli” Korça, University “Ismail Qemali” Vlora, University “Luigj Gurakuqi” Shkodra.The number of students who underwent on this study, was 1502. The dispersed material was the questionnaire through which the students arithmetic average for the first semester of that academic year, the type of attachment (based on Attachment Style Questionnaire built by Feeney) and the level of stress (based in the Academic Stress Scale built by Rabani).

Open access