YEAR 2020

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When children with special educational needs have problems with their peers—comparison of inclusive and special needs classes


Prof. Susanne Schwab (University of Wuppertal, North-West University South Africa), Prof. Markus Gebhardt (TU Dortmund University), Prof. Marco Hessels (University of Geneva, North-West University South Africa), and Lena Nusser (University of Bamberg) investigated this topic on the basis of data of the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS Starting Cohort 3).

For children with learning difficulties, social participation at a mainstream school frequently proves to be more problematic; however, the social environment in special needs classes does not necessarily have to be more harmonious. Moreover, in comparison to their classmates, it is more challenging for children with learning difficulties to make up for such problems through good social behavior: Even when they behave cooperatively, problems within the class environment persist.

According to the authors, programs aiming to improve social behavior should include all students and not just those with learning difficulties.

The contents and results of the study are now available in an easily comprehensible summary as part of our series “NEPS results concise and compact”.