Understanding early childhood special education through a journal: 11 Years of INT-JECSE
Field specific scientific journals do not only serve as a source of information to guide the practice in that field but also as a transmitter to dispense information distilled from practice. This is how they can facilitate setting and directing the trends in the field. This study aimed to identify the trends in methods and research subjects across the field of early childhood special education (ECSE) by analyzing the articles published in International Journal of Early Childhood Special Education (INT-JECSE) within the last 11 years. Designed as a journal analysis, the study has converted demographic and methodological features, and subject areas of 133 articles published in INT-JECSE into a data set via Article Description Form. Data regarding demographic and methodological features of all the articles have been analyzed via quantitative descriptive analysis whereas their subjects have been examined through content analysis. As for demographic analysis, the distribution of articles varied across years. Despite the high number of international and co-authored articles, those with an interdisciplinary orientation were scarce. With respect to methodology, non-intervention articles and those designed in line with quantitative methods outnumbered the others. Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder constituted the majority of research samples in all the articles. Subject areas of the articles have been grouped under eight themes such as developmental areas/skills, parents, early intervention, teachers, ECSE systems, inclusion, assessment, and others. Based on the findings, it is deemed critical for the journal to include methodological approaches and research subjects in accordance with their size and density in theory and practice.
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