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Keywords:

  • Digital and educational exclusion;
  • student teachers;
  • inclusive pedagogy and practice

The areas of education inclusion and digital inclusion have recently received growing interest from the research community while addressing the wider concern of social inclusion, but little research has been carried out exploring the relationship between the two areas. Central to both areas, this paper presents a study that investigated student teachers' attitudes towards using Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for equality as part of inclusive education and practice, and explored the extent to which it is important that student teachers are prepared for both education and digital inclusion. The study focused on the attitudes of student teachers who had taken a new reformed course on inclusive education and practice within a Scottish University. Results from the study showed that student teachers' attitudes towards using ICT for teaching and learning were strongly positive, and were also strongly positive towards inclusive education. Their attitudes towards inclusive practice and using ICT for inclusive practice were slightly less positive. This seemed to result in ICT being used less in terms of inclusive education and more from the perspective of accessibility to the curriculum. The study provided evidence that the impact of ICT as part of inclusive practice is not well understood by student teachers and that student teachers' attitudes towards digital equality do not feature highly in inclusive practices. Consequently, greater attention to ways in which ICT is used for inclusive purposes is needed in Initial Teacher Education and in education policies in order to improve student teachers' preparedness for education inclusion.