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Peer to Peer Deaf Multiliteracies: experiential pedagogy, agency and inclusion in working with young adults in India

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

E-pub ahead of print
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>16/09/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>International Journal of Inclusive Education
Publication StatusE-pub ahead of print
Early online date16/09/22
<mark>Original language</mark>English


In many countries across the world education for deaf people is limited and sign languages are undervalued. In this paper we discuss a formative and design experiment (Bradley & Reinking, 2008), developed over 3 years and implemented in India, Ghana and Uganda, to support deaf education for young adults. Reporting here specifically on the work in India, our project used a bilingual approach, with Indian Sign Language as the main means of communication and learning while developing students’ English literacy through the adoption of a multiliteracies pedagogy (Cope & Kalantzis, 2000) and the use of authentic texts in lessons. Our approach was designed to be learner-centred, inviting their agency and input. Responding to students’ engagement with the approach, we encountered their demand for formal grammar teaching and we offer an example of how one of the tutors engaged with this. Illustrated with the aid of visual data from the lessons, we discuss specifically two insights from the project: the importance of the students’ ‘semiotic repertoire’ (Kusters et al., 2017) leveraged in the lessons and acting as a driver to support learning; and the centrality of an educational approach that is inclusive and supportive of students’ agency and aspirations for learning.