Reforming teacher education for inclusion in developing countries in the Asia-Pacific region

Umesh Sharma, Chris Forlin, Joanne Marie Deppeler, Guang-xue Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


A number of Asian Pacific countries have ratified the UN Conventions on the Rights of People with Disabilities and have identified an urgent need to include children with special educational needs in regular school programs. Successful implementation of such a policy reform requires significant changes in the way education is provided to all students, but most importantly depends upon how adequately the teachers and related professionals are prepared to implement the reform. This paper reviews research from 13 Asian Pacific countries, undertaken in the last five years, to address two questions. First it reports on the issues, challenges, and proposals related to inclusive education in these countries. Second the review reports on how each region has progressed towards implementing the Millennium Development Goals with particular emphasis on how teacher education has or has not responded to this. The review concludes that a lack of well thought out policy, few resources, and limited understanding of inclusion seems widespread in the Asia-Pacific region. As yet special education and related service expertise and teacher education for inclusion, is not in place to support teachers to work inclusively.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3 - 16
Number of pages14
JournalAsian Journal of Inclusive Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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