Teacher preparation programs provide numerous teaching and learning opportunities for pre-service teachers; however, participating in an Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting is not an experience that can be guaranteed. Leading and participating in IEP meetings are a responsibility that all special education teachers will be held accountable for, but many pre-service teachers will never be able to observe a real IEP meeting before entering the field. In this qualitative case study, the researcher utilizes a simulated IEP meeting to provide pre-service teachers with experience in participating in an IEP meeting prior to entering the profession. The case study method is utilized to examine the perceptions and experiences of pre-service teachers following the simulated IEP meeting experience. Findings in this study support the use of role-play in developing a greater understanding of the IEP process, from program development to the IEP meeting itself.


teacher preparation, role-play, qualitative case study, special education

Author Bio(s)

Courtney Toledo is a clinical instructor of Elementary and Special Education (Dual Certification) at Georgia Southern University and is also currently enrolled in the Curriculum Studies Doctoral Program at the same university. Her research interests include effective teacher preparation, co-teaching, and pre-service teacher identity. Please direct correspondence ctoledo@georgiasouthern.edu.


I would like to acknowledge Dr. Peggy Shannon-Baker, who has provided me with guidance and support in becoming a qualitative researcher. In addition, this study would not have been possible without the ongoing support of my writing group, who have believed in my abilities and helped me to see the bigger picture.

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