Are Teachers Tolerant of Diversity? Identifying Common or Dissimilar Patterns of Response towards Difference

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The study describes the examination of data which resulted from asking 91 school teachers from Spain about their tolerance toward people who differ from the ‘norm’. The survey included 30 statements, to which respondents reacted on a five-point scale, concerning tolerance with regard to culture, language, socioeconomic status/social class, religion, gender, sexual orientation, political ideology, disability, and giftedness/special talent differences. Analysis of responses revealed that the Spanish teachers sampled believe that they are most tolerant of disabilities, whilst being less tolerant of manifestations of giftedness/special talent. Different political ideologies and religious and cultural differences were rated as being least tolerated of all. The survey examined 'difference' as a wholist entity, and its conclusions serve as a start-point for other, more comprehensive, studies about tolerances towards diversity.


Keywords: Teachers’ Attitudes, Diversity, Spain
Stream: Learning, Education, Training
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation in English
Paper: Are Teachers Tolerant of Diversity? Identifying Common or Dissimilar Patterns of Response towards Difference


Dr. María-Cristina Cardona

Professor of Differential Pedagogy, Faculty of Education, University of Alicante
Alicante, Alicante, Spain

Cristina M. Cardona, PhD, is professor of Special Education and director of a doctoral program on “Diversity in Education” at the University of Alicante, Spain. She has taught children with special and specific educational needs in a variety of settings and has worked in teacher education, both in Spain and abroad. She has published widely (more than a dozen books) in special and inclusive education. Her research interests include instructional and curricular adaptations for differentiation, inclusive education, and quantitative research on knowledge and attitudes toward difference, particularly in ability. Professor Cardona is a convenor of the Inclusive Education Network of the EERA (European Educational Research Association).

Ref: D08P0372