Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Early Childhood, Multilingual, and Higher Education

First Committee Member

Monica Brown

Second Committee Member

Kyle Higgins

Third Committee Member

Michelle Cumming

Fourth Committee Member

Randall Boone

Number of Pages



Family engagement has been identified as an integral component to successful outcomes for children/youth with and without disabilities. In fact, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) (2004) mandates that parents participate in their child’s individualized education planning (IEP) meeting during the special education process to ensure children with disabilities are provided with an appropriate education. Current research on family engagement focuses on the experiences and perceptions families have of the process, building family-school partnerships and parental advocacy. However, research has not examined how culture impacts engagement. Therefore, this study examined the impact of cultural considerations and social resources on family engagement. Specifically, this study examined how culture impacts the IEP meeting and engagement for families from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (CLD) with children with disabilities. Social and cultural capitals were used as a theoretical framework to address parental advocacy and family-school partnerships.

This study employed a Delphi method to build consensus and to gain insights into parents’ perceptions of the cultural considerations that may impact parent advocacy, family-school partnerships, during the IEP meeting. Three rounds of questioning yielded both qualitative and quantitative data. Four aggregated statements achieved consensus in the second round of this Delphi study quantitative analysis. The results of the study have educational and social implications for CLD families of children with disabilities. Suggested strategies from the study results could help create more equitable experiences, as well as mitigate the barriers for families as they move through the IEP meeting with their child.

Keywords: social capital, cultural capital, Delphi study, cultural considerations, and social resources


Cultural capital; Delphi Study; Social capital; Social resources


Special Education and Teaching

File Format


File Size

2700 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




IN COPYRIGHT. For more information about this rights statement, please visit

Available for download on Thursday, August 15, 2030