Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Education (EdD)



Committee Chair(s)

Scott Hunsaker


Scott Hunsaker


Sarah Clark


Steven Camicia


Kerry Jordan


Barbara DeBoer


The purpose of this study was to describe the lived experiences of the learners in a fifth-grade coteaching classroom. Because the practice of coteaching is gaining popularity in schools, there is increasing use of this teaching method in general education classrooms. If learning in a coteaching classroom is to be meaningful for students, it is important to have their perspective of this instructional delivery option. Through careful listening, observation, and interpretation of the students’ lived experience, a better understanding of the students’ perspective in a coteaching classroom was gained. Data for this qualitative study were triangulated using classroom observations, student drawn images, and interviews with selected students and the coteachers. Findings indicate that (1) students can give voice to their lived experience when given the opportunity to use images to do so; (2) the ability of coteachers to get along with each other is an important aspect of students lived experience in the coteaching classroom; (3) another aspect of the lived experience of students in the coteaching classroom is learning the ethics of the caring classroom from their coteachers. The findings support the literature, which suggests coteaching can be an effective teaching delivery option and that the voices of the learners in the classroom are an important source of information about what works in schools. These results are significant because they help to inform future decisions about the practice of coteaching. The results of this study also clarify ways the coteaching model can be strengthened or improved for greater success and benefit for both the teachers and the students.




This work made publicly available electronically on May 11, 2012.