The lived experiences of adolescents with barriers to learning who participate in an alternative assessment programme
Bursey, Karin Adriana
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South Africa has adopted the international trend towards inclusive education. The result is an increasing number of learners with barriers to learning accommodated in mainstream schools. Alternative assessment programmes make provision to address the barriers to learning of these learners during formal assessments. Alternative assessment programmes are a good start to afford learners with barriers to learning a fair chance to impart their knowledge. However, the programmes are adult driven and, as the users of these programmes, we need to consider the learners’ views also. Knowledge of their experience will increase understanding of their needs, which in turn will help to refine the programmes and adjust the programmes to these needs. General aim of the study: to explore the lived experience of learners with barriers to learning, who participated in an alternative assessment programme in a mainstream high school in the Western Cape, in a qualitative way, through a phenomenological design. The phenomenological design provided a deeper understanding of the learners’ experience of the alternative assessment programme from the learners’ viewpoint. We held unstructured, individual interviews with the eight participants who consented to participate in the study. As requested, the participants made collages of their experiences of the alternative assessment programme in a group setting, prior to the interviews. Section B presents the findings of this qualitative study and relates the learners’ experience of the alternative assessment programme during test- and formal examination series. The findings highlight the importance of considering the opinions of learners with barriers, participating in an alternative assessment programme.
- Humanities