Special Education M.A.

Number of Pages


Year Approved


First Advisor

Larson, Susan

Second Reader

Michael Mignard;


According to Stephen Porges’ Polyvagal Theory, social responses to environments are mediated by the limbic system either by vagal input or vagal withdrawal (Mulkey & Du Plessis, 2019). The nervous system preconsciously perceives threats through a process termed neuroception. The Polyvagal Theory provides insight about how the nervous system continuously assesses risk and safety cues that influence behavioral and physiological states (Porges, 2015). Co-regulation provides the neural state that supports the establishment of trusting relationships. Humans are always looking for safety cues and by design are motivated to develop relationships to co- regulate. Incorporating the science of safety in educational practices would support feelings of safety in the human experience and promote a more productive and healthier society (Porges, 2022).

Degree Name

Special Education M.A.

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis