Mission and vision

The Department of Special Needs Education stands for high-quality and scientifically based education, aimed at supporting children, adolescents and adults (and their networks) in socially vulnerable situations, with the intention of improving their living conditions, quality of life and social inclusion. We prepare students for the profession of (clinical) orthopedagogue and to enable them to function independently in a variety of contexts and situations. In addition to university education, we offer training, education and lectures on current orthopedagogical issues and practice developments.

Our practice-oriented and fundamental research, in which we make use of both qualitative and quantitative research methods, aims to contribute to the optimisation of orthopedagogical acting. Scientific research focuses on people who have a hard time in our contemporary society or who are at risk of falling through the cracks of the system. Think about children with a disability and their right to (inclusive) education and quality support; young people with behavioural or emotional problems or who committed a juvenile crime; (young) adults with an addiction problem; adults with an intellectual disability who want to actively participate in society, ...

We are convinced that orthopedagogical action needs to be shaped together with all parties involved (parents, teachers, social workers, ...), taking into account the strengths, possibilities, vulnerabilities and support needs of the central person. We see it as our responsibility to strengthen the voice of the most vulnerable in society and to critically question social structures and care policies.