Vad ska jag göra som specialpedagog?
En materiell-diskursiv analys av specialpedagogers uppdrag och yrkesroll i ett skolområde

Translated title of the thesis: Which are my tasks as a special education teacher? A material-discursive analysis of the special educator´s assignments and professional role in a school district
  • Helena Kullberg

Student thesis: Professional degree, Advanced level


The special educator´s mission and professional role have for many years been noticed in the research, mainly in relation to the special teacher´s mission and professional role to highlight similarities and differences. This study has an ambition to help illuminate what influences the design of a special educator´s mission and professional role. The study is qualitative and is based on Karen Barad´s theory of agentic realism where both human and non-human bodies (performative agents) influence perceptions about, for example the special educator´s mission and professional role. Matter and language are strongly interconnected in the reality in which the special educator works and therefore the study is based on a material-discursive analysis. The purpose of the study is to illustrate and identify which performative agents influence how the special educator´s assignments and professional role are designed in primary school in a school district. The method part is based on a letter method and semistructured interviews with specialist teachers, special educators, principals and a school district manager in a school district. In order to clarify which performative agents own agents in the processing, an analysis scheme has been created based on assignments and professional role. In the analysis schedule for the assignment, the performative agents have been categorized on the basis of a figure that I created to clarify the assignment. The results section shows how assignments and professional roles are presented by special educators, special teachers, principals and a school district manager, and points to the fact that there are a large number of performative agents, of which the principals competence, the decision of the principal, the needs of the organization and the knowledge and competence of the special educator are of great importance in the design of the special educator´s assignment and profession. Finally, we discuss the importance of the performative agents for the design of the special educator´s mission and professional role and how the special educational support is designed in an organization. But also how the figure used can be a clear model to use to analyze the special educator´s assignment in relation to the student health team´s health promotion, prevention and corrective work in the school organization, i.e. as part of school development.

Date of Award2020-Jul-02
Original languageSwedish
SupervisorAnnette Byström (Supervisor) & Carin Roos (Examiner)

Educational program

  • Special Education Programme

University credits

  • 15 HE credits

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Pedagogical Work (50304)


  • material-discursive analysis
  • performative agent
  • principal´s role
  • special education teacher’s assignment and professional role

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