Inclusion of handicapped children into regular classrooms is a growing and controversial topic in the field of education. Federal and state legislation addressing this issue first appeared in 197 5 with the Education for All Handicapped Children Act. Most research to date on inclusion has focused on issues surrounding sociological theories, such as symbolic interactionism and stigma. This study, however, utilized organizational theories of education in order to examine the process of implementation. This approach addresses issues at the district level which are of specific concern to classroom teachers. I used qualitative methodology for this study, observing and conducting interviews in a specific school setting. My methodology also included document analysis. My findings indicated the occurrence ofloose coupling throughout the implementation process. This study will argue that although actors at all levels of the system are aware of the sociological theories behind inclusion, the process of implementation causes change in the original policy, and curriculum and classroom activity are loosely coupled to legislation.


McConnell, David


Sociology and Anthropology

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis

Available for download on Thursday, January 01, 2150

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