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Meeting obligations to consult students with disability: methodological considerations and successful elements for consultation

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Australian legislation requires teachers to make reasonable adjustments for students with disability, including those with Developmental Language Disorder. The Standards underpinning this legislation stipulate that students must be consulted about adjustments that are made. This is not common practice in Australian schools and there is limited practical guidance available for professionals to help them enact these obligations, particularly when consulting students with communication difficulties. This paper presents findings from a research project that used a sequential phase mixed-method design to investigate what students with language difficulties say helps them to learn when they engaged in a communication accessible consultation process. The barriers that students say they experienced in accessing the curriculum, teacher instruction and demonstrating their learning are discussed, as well as the adjustments suggested by students. This article concludes with a discussion of successful elements for consulting students with disability, which can be utilised by teachers and researchers alike.

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The author wishes to thank the students and teachers who participated in the project and Professor Linda Graham for her comments and feedback during preparation of this manuscript.

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Correspondence to Haley Tancredi.

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Tancredi, H. Meeting obligations to consult students with disability: methodological considerations and successful elements for consultation. Aust. Educ. Res. 47, 201–217 (2020).

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