Date of Award

Spring 3-1-2016

Document Type



School of Education

First Advisor

Dr. Peggy Hickman


Research has shown that although habits are easier to instill in the early years of children due to the neuroplasticity of the brain, new research has shown that the brains of older children retain the capacity for rewiring and change in habits (Costa & Kallick, 2014). For students with learning disabilities and special education teachers, it is well known that the delivery of instruction needs to accommodate the learning ability. As students with learning disabilities progress through school the goal is to develop successful habits of mind that are necessary to compete in the 21st century. Through researching the habits of mind developed by Costa & Kallick and special education, it would seem logical to study the perceptions of special education teachers and students with learning disabilities on utilizing the habits of mind in the classroom. This mixed method research study gathered data through journaling, focus groups, interviews, and rating scales. Findings from this phenomenological, mixed methods action research study included an increase in awareness of the habits of mind gained from both teachers and students through self-reflection, ability to enhance subject area material, and recognize the global nature of the habits within their lives.


Degree: Special Education Leadership (Ed.D)