In this autoethnographic article we focus on the issues of “disability” and “inclusive education” and the challenges of being positive and affirming in this area of research and practice. As a teacher, I (Alina) continue to encounter regularly the dominant deficit view of “disability,” in spite of the extensive body of literature that advocates for the rights of people with disabilities as well as the benefits of inclusive education best built on strength-based thinking. The autoethnographic methodology allowed me to explore my experiences as an educator and reflect on specific events, presented through four vignettes that capture how my beliefs and values as an educator have formed over time. Throughout the article, I work closely with two academic colleagues (Ed and Jane), who become my critical friends, as I travel through this personal and professional journey that includes emotional reaction, reflection and academic analysis. I also engage with the emerging field of strength-based approaches to disability, as well as the importance of dialogue and justice, on an individual and professional level, with the aim of empowerment for students and teachers.
disability, inclusive education, deficit thinking, strength-based practices, autoethnography
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.
Recommended APA Citation
Kewanian, A., Creely, E., & Southcott, J. (2021). Affirming Strength-Based Practices in Disability and Inclusion: A Shared Autoethnographic Study of the Experiences of a Teacher. The Qualitative Report, 26(8), 2538-2557. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2021.4664