The research investigates the “impact of VLE on mathematical concepts acquisition of the special education needs (SENs) students at KS4 secondary education sector" in England. The overall aim of the study is to establish possible areas of difficulties to approach for above or below knowledge standard requirements for KS4 students in the acquisition and validation of basic mathematical concepts. A teaching period, in which virtual learning environment (Fronter) was used to emphasise different mathematical perception and symbolic representation was carried out and task based survey conducted to 20 special education needs students [14 actually took part]. The result shows that students were able to process information and consider images, objects and numbers within the VLE at early stages of acquisition process. They were also able to carry out perceptual tasks but with limiting process of different quotient, thus they need teacher-s guidance to connect them to symbolic representations and sometimes coach them through. The pilot study further indicates that VLE curriculum approaches for students were minutely aligned with mathematics teaching which does not emphasise the integration of VLE into the existing curriculum and current teaching practice. There was also poor alignment of vision regarding the use of VLE in realisation of the objectives of teaching mathematics by the management. On the part of teacher training, not much was done to develop teacher-s skills in the technical and pedagogical aspects of VLE that is in-use at the school. The classroom observation confirmed teaching practice will find a reliance on VLE as an enhancer of mathematical skills, providing interaction and personalisation of learning to SEN students.
This study used positivist quantitative approach to examine the mathematical concepts acquisition of- KS4 (14-16) Special Education Needs (SENs) students within the school sector education in England. The research is based on a pilot study and the design is completely holistic in its approach with mixing methodologies. The study combines the qualitative and quantitative methods of approach in gathering formative data for the design process. Although, the approach could best be described as a mix method, fundamentally with a strong positivist paradigm, hence my earlier understanding of the differentiation of the students, student – teacher body and the various elements of indicators that is being measured which will require an attenuated description of individual research subjects. The design process involves four phases with five key stages which are; literature review and document analysis, the survey, interview, and observation; then finally the analysis of data set. The research identified the need for triangulation with Reid-s phases of data management providing scaffold for the study. The study clearly identified the ideological and philosophical aspects of educational research design for the study of mathematics by the special education needs (SENs) students in England using the virtual learning environment (VLE) platform.