Additional workload or a part of the job? Icelandic teachers' discourse on inclusive education

Hermína Gunnórsdóttir*, Ingólfur Ásgeir Jóhannesson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this article is to examine the discourse of Icelandic compulsory school teachers on inclusive education. From 1974 and onwards, the education policy in Iceland has been towards inclusion, and Iceland is considered to be an example of a highly inclusive education system with few segregated resources for students with special educational needs. In particular, the article focuses on what characterises and legitimises teachers' discourse on inclusive education, the contradictions in the discourse and how teachers have involved themselves in the process. We use the approach of historical discourse analysis to analyse the discourse as it appears in interviews with teachers and media articles on education as well as in key documents issued by the Parliament. The article provides an insight into the complexities of this topic and draws attention to underlying issues relevant to inclusive education.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)580-600
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Inclusive Education
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jun 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Hermína Gunnþórsdóttir thanks the Icelandic Research Fund (RANNÍS) and University of Akureyri Research Fund for supporting this research. We also thank Gunnþór Gunnþórsson for reading a first draft of the analysis; Dóra S. Bjarnason and Gretar L. Marinósson for a thorough reading of some of the final drafts; Rafn Kjartansson for the translation of the citations and proofreading; and finally the interviewees, as well as the anonymous referees for their critical and supportive comments.

Other keywords

  • Discourse
  • Educational policy and practice
  • Historical discourse analysis
  • Inclusive education
  • Teachers' discourse


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