Toronto Metropolitan University
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"If only I had known...": young peoples participation in the construction of their learning disabilities

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posted on 2021-05-22, 17:40 authored by Elizabeth Savaria
This paper explores how young people participate in the construction of their learning disabilities and how the experience impacts their internal truth, and self-concept. The results show that none of the interviewee subjects in the study participated in the Identification Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) meetings conducted in Ontario. The interviewees did participate in a variety of other forums such as psychological testing, university development centers, and conversations with family members, and teachers. Analysis of coded qualitative interviews reveals four major themes that were interwoven: internal truth of self-concept about disability; external truths of individuals of self-conceptualization about disability; knowledge of disability; and participation in the construction of the label of disability. The children’s rights framework and the new sociology of childhood are used to explore the construction of self-concept for children and young people with disabilities, and the nature and timing of their participation in matters regarding them and their label of exceptionality in the Ontario education system. Keywords: self-concept, participation, learning disability, exceptionality, young people, construction of labels.





  • Master of Arts


  • Early Childhood Studies

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • MRP

Thesis Advisor

Kathryn Underwood