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This study reports on the perceptions and instructional practices of grades 3 through 5 special education teachers in a school district that implemented a multitiered response to intervention (RTI) framework for the previous 5 years. The authors used focus groups and interviews to examine special education teachers’ perceptions of RTI. In addition, the authors observed the mathematics and reading instruction that these teachers provided. This study contributes to the literature by presenting a qualitative, in-depth description of special education teachers’ perceptions related to RTI implementation at the upper-elementary level.


Swanson, E., Solis, M., Ciullo, S., & McKenna, J. W. (2012). Special education teachers' perceptions and instructional practices in response to intervention implementation. Learning Disabilities Quarterly, 35(2), 115–126. doi:10.1177/0731948711432510

Related Institute

Related Project

Published Date


Funding Source

U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences


Mathematics Instruction
Reading Instruction
Response to Intervention (RTI)
Special Education/Learning Disabilities

Type of Resource

Journal Article/Book Chapter


Special Education Teacher

Grade Level