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Deconstructing barriers: perceptions of students labeled with learning disabilities in higher education.

Authors
  • Denhart, Hazel
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of learning disabilities
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2008
Volume
41
Issue
6
Pages
483–497
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1177/0022219408321151
PMID: 18931016
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

This phenomenological study investigated barriers to higher education faced by 11 college students labeled with learning disabilities (LD) using their voice as the primary data. Data were analyzed and interpreted through a disability theory perspective revealing barriers stemmed largely from external social causes rather than individual pathology. Barriers included being misunderstood by faculty, being reluctant to request accommodations for fear of invoking stigma, and having to work considerably longer hours than nonlabeled peers. Findings indicated barriers could be overcome through raising faculty awareness about LD issues, engaging the assistance of the college LD specialist, and participation in a LD democratic empowerment community on campus.

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