Professional Ethical Principles for Special Education Teachers
Ethics is a discipline that tries to establish ideals and norms by studying and questioning ethical behavior. It also aims to assist institutions and experts to make decisions by differentiating between right and wrong. Professional ethics is one of those disciplines incorporating a sum of principles deviced by professional organizations, approved as correct in time through discussions and seen as an indispensable condition for a profession today. The purpose of this study is to establish professional ethical principles that can be used in special education teachers' pre-service and in-service training, practices and assessment. The research was designed as a scale developing study with a descriptive research model. After the field research, researchers wrote the items for the draft scale and expert opinion was taken for content validity. The tool having 85% content validity was applied to a sample group of 148 special education professionals. Construct validity of the data gathered about importance and compliance dimensions was analyzed with normality, skewness and kurtosis values test, item total correlation and with factor analysis. The minimum score is 33 and the maximum is 132; KMO value was found 86 and the Bartlett test was significant (χ2=2464,435; p=0.00). Although the deviation is not very high the normality tests should be taken into account. After the factor analyses since it was found that the variance explained by the first dimension is low (20%) in this pre application study total scores couldn’t be taken and parametric statistical analysis couldn't be done. The answers to the items were evaluated with percentage and frequency values. Special education professionals see special education professional ethical principles as important and very important; principles seen as little important vary based on education level and professional experience. Among the teachers with B.A, M.A. and Ph.D. degrees of the 33 principles nobody marked any item as “not important”, however, among the compliance principles there are some that they think are not applied.
Key words: Special education, Special education expert, Special education teacher, Professional ethics, Ethical principles.
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