SA Journal of Education, Vol 33, No 4 (2013)

Active facilitation of focus groups: exploring the implementation of inclusive education with research participants

Norma RA Romm, Norma M Nel, Lloyd DN Tlale


In this article, we explain how we took an “active” approach to focus group discussions with
teachers in three South African schools. The topic of discussion was their views on the
implementation of inclusive education. We shall also show how we sought feedback from the
participants on their experiences of these discussions. In seeking this feedback, we were
interested in seeing if they interpreted the sessions as being learning experiences – that is, as
sessions that enabled the participants to learn from each other as well as from facilitators with
a view to promoting mutual learning. We indicate how the participants chose to use the feed-
back opportunity to suggest that further processes should be put in place (by us) in the light of
their expressed concerns. Finally, we outline how we took responsibility by creating a further
forum for discussion with those who were regarded as having additional “actioning” power.

doi: 10.15700/201412171340

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