You are here

Key Issues in Special Educational Needs and Inclusion

Key Issues in Special Educational Needs and Inclusion

Second Edition

September 2015 | 216 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Understanding and engaging critically with the field of special educational needs and disability (SEND) is a difficult task. However, the new edition of this bestselling book continues to help students contextualize SEND in relation to historical, ideological and political developments as well as support them in developing a critical understanding of the complexities associated with inclusion.


Completely up to date with recent legislation such as the SEND Code of Practice (2014) there are case studies, reflections and activities which will help students question practice they have seen and experienced.


Covering the 0-25 age range this book is suitable for all those working with children and young people across education, health and social work.

Introducing SEN
Principles of SEN: Theoretical Perspectives
Disability: Explanatory Beginnings
The Development of SEN: From Benevolent Humanitarianism to the Halfway House of Integration
The Emergence of Inclusive Education: From Humble Beginnings
Current Legislation Governing SEN and Inclusion
Multi-agency Working
International Perspectives on SEN and Inclusive Education

This highly engaging and accessible book critically explores the concept of Special Educational Needs and Inclusion from a plurality of perspectives. The author considers historical, cultural and social aspects of inclusion and uses case studies to illustrate the effects of policy and practice on the individual. This is an excellent, up-to-date resource for students of Education and education practitioners.

Marion Jones, Professor of Teacher Education
Liverpool John Moores University

Alan Hodkinson has succeeded in producing a very readable, lucid and intelligently argued examination of SEN and inclusion in a national and international context. Students and teachers interested in reading a book that persuasively unlocks the development, principles and practices of this subject could do no better than to read this text.

Keith Crawford
Adjunct Professor of Education, Macquarie University, Sydney.

An excellent update of an eminently accessible and student friendly text book covering key issues in the field.

Miss Irene Rose
Education Studies, Liverpool Hope University
April 9, 2018

Essential to the course

Miss Nicola Wilson
Earty Years, Exeter College
December 14, 2016

All educators need to be informed and aware SEN's and the importance of inclusive practice. Case studies demonstrate and contextualise SEN's across a wide variety of situations. These along with the historical background make this an excellent (essential) read for all those entering into education.

Mr Sam Emmett
Division of Social Sciences and Educatio, Glyndwr University
May 14, 2016

Provides a current perspective on SEN: theory, definitions, historical perspectives, changes in legislation etc. Includes 'reader reflections' throughout to support engagement with key issues.

Mrs Lorna Hughes
Faculty of Education, Canterbury Christ Church University
September 13, 2016

This book is excellently set out and very readable. The case studies that are included provide practical examples of situations which makes the theory easier to understand. Hodkinson provides a good balance of information in a variety of forms. I very much like the choice of title for the three sections: Contextualising SEN and disabilities; Historical perspectives of SEN and inclusion; and, Operationalising SEN and inclusion. For any student approaching this area with little background knowledge, this book will be a godsend.

Ms Miriam Ruth Walker
Faculty of Education, Winchester University
September 8, 2015

The book provides a useful and more recent account of the way policy is (re)shaping the field of Disability and SEN. There is a useful chapter on international perspectives which introduces students to how key issues have influenced respective countries. Worth a read but with a cautionary note relating to the number of inaccuracies and errors. The book targets ‘novice’ readers and opens with a useful caveat; namely, that ‘some’ concepts may result in a ‘distortion of the facts’. Readers should therefore keep in mind that in relation to such distortion, that the author is ambivalent with interpretations and paradoxically claims to offer a critical examination. There are useful follow-up readings and questions for the reader to pursue. As readers proceed through chapters, there are abrupt changes of themes which makes reading confusing. Unfortunately, there are rudimentary errors with incorrect and misleading citations (one example appears on p.86 an incorrect attributed comment to Abberley (1987)).

Navin Kikabhai
Department of Education, Bedfordshire University
August 30, 2016

Useful sections on multi-agency working and current legislation.

Mrs Zoe Lewis
Education, Birmingham City University
April 9, 2016

Hodkinson is a respected authority on developing inclusive practice for learners with SEN/D and this updated text offers a very useful primer on the issues. Highly recommended for any practitioner interested in developing their understanding and practice in this area.

Mr Jonathan Vincent
Faculty of Education & Theology, York St John University
November 12, 2015

Alan Hodkinson

Alan Hodkinson was for many years a Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) and senior manager in the primary school sector. Currently, he is an Associate Professor, in the Centre for Culture and Disability Studies at Liverpool Hope University. More About Author

Purchasing options

Please select a format:

ISBN: 9781473912250
ISBN: 9781473912243