Presentation on theme: "Self-Determination as a Dropout Prevention Strategy"— Presentation transcript:
1 Self-Determination as a Dropout Prevention Strategy First Annual Special Education Forum on Dropout PreventionOrlando, FLNovember 3, 2004Dalun Zhang, Ph.D.Clemson University
2 Since 1990s, self-determination has received increased attention in the field of special education and disability services
3 Facts about Self-Determination Individuals with disabilities and their families identified SD as a top need.The U.S. Department of Education funded numerous SD research projects and SD demonstration projects since 1990.Most states have incorporated SD into their services and funding priorities
4 Field, Martin, Miller, Ward, and Wehmeyer (1998b) identified 35 curricula that were designed for this purpose; whereas Test, Karvonen, Wood, Browder, and Algozzine (2000) found 60 curricula and 675 other resources.A number of professional journals devoted a special issue to SD (e.g. The Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, Career Development for Exceptional Individuals, etc.)Over 450 articles have been published on the topic of self-determinationCEC Pre-Conference Capacity Building Institute 04
5 Self-Determination Movement BackgroundPhase I (mid )Phase II ( present) Federal Mandates Federal Initiatives
6 BackgroundGraduation from high school is a major milestone for every adolescent because it marks the transition from adolescence to young adulthoodSuccessful completion of the transition process is, in many cases, a natural and self-perpetuating one for high school students without disabilities. For high school students with disabilities, however, the transition process is often not as naturalEducation must play a more critical role in facilitating task development and preparation for adulthoodFollow-up studies of the 1980s and 1990s found disappointing outcomesConsumers and researcher identified lack of self-determination as a major cause of this disappointing outcomes
7 Phase IThe Phase I period started in the mid-1980s when significant attention was focused on the benefits of empowering consumersThis was a period when people with disabilities and their families organized to assert their rights of citizenship, advocate for social and political change, and demand access to the neighborhoods, jobs, schools and activities enjoyed by persons without disabilitiesHowever, the issues of preference, choice, and personal autonomy received little attention in the field of special education
8 Phase II Phase II started in 1990 when the IDEA was passed. Characterized by federal legislation and federal initiative pertaining to self-determination
9 Federal Mandates Pertaining to SD IDEA:…. be planned based on the student’s preferences and interestsStudents must be included in their transition planning meetingRehabilitation Act:disability is … in no way diminishes the rights to live independently, enjoy self-determination, make choices, contribute to society, ……..
10 ConsensusAs a result of consumers’ efforts and federal mandates and initiatives, three agreements were reached in early 1990s:Self-determination is a critical outcome of the transition process for students with disabilities and must be part of the career development process that begins in early childhood and continues throughout adult lifePeople with disabilities have the same right to self-determination as is available to all AmericansProfessionals working across various disciplines in the field of disability services need to provide opportunities for students with disabilities to experience choice and exercise self-determination.
11 What is Self-determination? Historically, self-determination referred to the right of nations or ethnic minorities to self-governance. Derived from this original meaning, self-determination, has been appropriated by disability rights advocates and people with disabilities to refer to their “rights” to have control over their lives.
12 The present use of self-determination within special education emphasizes empowerment of individuals with disabilities.
13 Self-determination as an Educational Outcome Wehmeyer conceptualizes self-determination as an educational outcome. He defines self-determination as “acting as the primary causal agent in one’s life and making choices and decisions free from undue external influences or interference” - Wehmeyer, M. L. (1996). Self-determination as an educational outcome.
14 Field, Martin, Miller, Ward, & Wehmeyer (1998) define self-determination as: A combination of skills, knowledge, and beliefs that enable a person to engage in goal-directed, self-regulated, autonomous behavior. An understanding of one’s strengths and limitations together with a belief in oneself as capable and effective are essential to self-determination. When acting on the basis of these skills and attitudes, individuals have greater ability to take control of their lives and assume the role of successful adults in our society.
15 My reviews of various definitions yielded 6 common points: Self-determination concerns an individual’s control over his or her own life;In order to control one’s own life, an individual needs to have certain attitudes, characteristics, and abilities;An individual needs to interact with the environment in an appropriate way;A person needs to have freedom and independence;One needs to know and value oneself and be able to make choices and decisions based on one’s own interests and preferences;A person has to be able to set and achieve goals which lead to achievement of adult outcomes.
16 Essential Characteristics of Behaviors that are Self-Determined Make choices and decisions as neededExhibit some personal and internal control over actionsFeel capable and act that wayUnderstand the effects of own action
17 Component Elements of SD Choice-makingDecision MakingProblem-solvingGoal setting and attainmentSelf-regulationSelf-advocacySelf-understanding & awarenessSelf-efficacy
18 Self-Determination Models Wehmeyer's (1997) self-determination model focuses on the conceptualization of the concept of self-determination. This model is developed to explain self-determined behaviors in general. It identifies four essential characteristics that self-determined people possess and 12 component elements of self-determination.
20 Field and Hoffman’s (1994) self-determination model focuses on skills, knowledge, and values that lead to self-determination. It has five major components: know yourself, value yourself, plan, act, and experience outcomes and learn. The following figure presents the five components and their sub-components and the relationship among the five components.
22 ?? Does it lead to better student outcomes? I know what Self-determination is. But…??Does it lead to betterstudent outcomes?
23 SD Leads to Better Transition Outcomes Life following formal education is uncertain and overwhelming for many young people with disabilities, and support services are typically hard to find (Powers, Sowers et al., 1996). In order to be successful, it is critical that youth are self-determined so that they are able to manage the challenges they will face on a day-to-day basis.
24 Generally the opportunity to make choices, express preferences, set goals, and self-regulate learning and behavior have all been linked to more favorable educational and adult outcomes.-- Wehmeyer (1997)
25 Two Follow-Up StudiesWehmeyer and Schwartz (1997) conducted a follow-up study of youth with mental retardation or learning disabilities. They collected data prior to their exit from high school and one year after exit. Findings showed that individuals with higher level of self-determination were more likely to have experienced a greater number of positive adult outcomes, including a higher likelihood of being employed and earning more per hour than those who were not self-determined.
26 Wehmeyer & Palmer (2003) published a follow-up study of 94 high school completers one- and three-years after exiting school. They found:Individuals in the high SD group fared much better than individuals in the low SD group in 6 out of 8 adult living areas one-year after left school and fared better in all 8 adult living areas three-years after left school.More individuals in the high SD group paid their phone bills and groceries and had a bank account one-year after school. At three-year after school, even more individuals in the high SD group did these things. In addition, more individuals in the high SD group paid their rent and utilities.Individuals in the high SD group also enjoyed better overall benefits at three-years after school. They also had better specific benefits in vacation, sick leaves, and health insurance.
27 High intrinsic motivation and internal locus of control McMillan & Reed (1994) found that some students could be classified as at-risk, but developed characteristics and coping skills that enable them to succeed. They term these students as “resilient.”Their Common characteristics Include:High intrinsic motivation and internal locus of controlHigher educational aspirationsMotivated by a desire to succeed, to be self-starting, and to be personally responsible for their achievementsA strong sense of self-efficacyClear, realistic goals and are optimistic about the future
28 Hardre and Reeve (2003) Study Used self-determination theory and tested a motivational model to explain the conditions under which rural students formulate their intentions to persist in, versus drop out of, high school.The model argues that motivational variables underlie students' intentions to drop out and that students' motivation can be either supported in the classroom by autonomy-supportive teachers or frustrated by controlling teachers.
29 Analyses of questionnaire data from 483 rural high school students showed that the provision of autonomy support within classrooms predicted students' self-determined motivation and perceived competence. These motivational resources, in turn, predicted students' intentions to persist, versus drop out, and they did so even after controlling for the effect of achievement.
30 Risk Factors for Dropout Family Factors: Poverty, inadequate family guidance, lack of role modelsSchool Factors: Inadequate school practices and policies (e.g., a student has more than one teacher – makes it hard for parents to connect with one adult; instruction is irrelevant)Student Factors: repeated failure, learned helplessness, lack of future goals, inadequate choices, poor judgment, poor peer relations, lack of problem-solving skills, external locus of control, low self-esteem
31 Why Do Students with Disabilities Drop out of School? Two studies have provided specific information on the primary reasons for dropping out of school among special education youth.One study asked California special education administrators to identify why youth left school (Jay and Padilla, 1987). They reported the following reasons in order of influence: dislike of school, preference for a job, inability to get along with teachers, and friends who dropped out.The National Longitudinal Transition Study showed that parents of students with emotional disabilities reported that most of their children had dropped out because of their dislike of school (32%) or because of behavior problems (27%; Wagner, 1989).
32 ActivityDiscussion & Identification of At-Risk Factors for Dropout for Students with DisabilitiesWhich Elements of Self-Determination Can Be Used to Mediate/Reduce the Risks and How?
33 Addressing Risk Factors by Teaching Component Elements of SD Choice-making, decision-making, and problem-solvingGoal setting and attainmentSelf-RegulationSelf-advocacySelf-understanding and awarenessSelf-efficacy
34 Self-Determination and Standards-Based Reform Component elements of self-determined behavior are found in virtual all state and local standards across multiple content areasStudents who are self-determined are more likely to be able to successfully engage with the curriculum:Learning-to-learn or self-regulation strategiesGoal oriented, problem-solving focusedStudy skills, organization skills--Wehmeyer (2004)
35 No Content Left BehindAll students need instruction to become self-determinedComponent elements in standardsEnhanced capacity to interact with and engage in the curriculumValued societal outcomeNeed to develop and implement school-wide interventions: Not just disability-focused, not just IEP-focused--Wehmeyer (2004)
36 Acquiring the personal characteristics which lead to self-determination is a developmental process. Children should be given opportunities to engage in activities that promote SD and should be taught SD
37 Approaches to Promoting SD Fostering SD in daily educational activities starting from early elementary yearsInfusing SD skills instruction into existing curriculaTeaching SD by implementing an SD curriculumPracticing SD skills through participation in transitional and educational planningSchool/district wide implementation
38 Fostering Self-Determination Start early!Early Childhood (2 -5)Early Elementary Years (6 - 8)Late Elementary Years (9 - 11)Secondary Years (12 & Over)-- Doll, Sands, Wehmeyer, and Palmer (1996)
39 Early Childhood provide opportunities to make structured choices provide opportunities to generate choices that are both positive and negativeprovide formative and constructive feedback on the consequences of choices made in the recent pastprovide opportunities for planning activities that are pendingprovide opportunities to self-evaluate task performance to a modelask directive questions so that the child compare his or her performance to a model
40 Early Elementaryprovide opportunities to choose from among several different strategies for a taskask children to reconsider choices they’ve made in the recent pastencourage children to “think aloud” with youprovide opportunities to talk about how they learnprovide opportunities to systematically evaluate their workhelp students set simple goals for themselves and check to see whether they are reaching them.
41 Late Elementary provide guidance in systematic analyses of decisions use the same systematic structure to analyze past decisions now that their consequences are evidentprovide opportunities to commit to personal or academic goalsprovide opportunities to systematically analyze adult perspectivesprovide opportunities to evaluate task performance in affectively “safe” ways
42 Secondaryprovide oppy. to make decisions that have important impact on their day-to-day activitiesmake it easy for students to see the link between their goals and daily decisionsprovide guidance in breaking students’ long-term goals into a number of short-term objectivesassist student in realistically recognizing and accepting weaknesses in key skillsassist student in requesting academic and social supports from teachers
43 Self-Determination Curricula Next S.T.E.P.Steps to Self-DeterminationTake Charge for the FutureChoice MakerWhose Future Is It Anyway1-2-3 BREAK
44 NEXT S.T.E.P.The Next S.T.E.P. (Helper et al., 1997) is a self-determination curriculum that is designed to teach adolescents with and without disabilities, ages 14 to 21.Teach skills that they need to participate successfully in a self-directed transition planning process.Students learn to define their hopes and dreams, engage in self-evaluation, set goals and plan activities that will help them accomplish the goals.Consists of 19 lessons clustered into four units.
45 The Next S.T.E.P. curriculum materials include a teacher’s manual, student workbooks, and a video. The teacher’s manual contains lesson plans, masters for overhead transparencies, and guidelines for involving parents or other family members in a student’s transition planning process. The student workbooks include worksheets used in the lessons, plan sheets, and other forms that students will need to produce their transition plans. The video contains a number of vignettes that play a motivational and instructional role in some lessons.
46 Choice Maker Self-Determination Curriculum Purpose: Designed to teach self-determination skills they need to be successful in adult lifeComponents: Choice and decision-making; goal setting; problem-solving; self-evaluation; self-advocacy; IEP planning; self-awareness
47 Overview: Three strands with five units Choosing Goals: “Choosing employment goals”“Choosing personal goals”“Choosing education goals”Expressing Goals: “Self-directed IEP”Taking Action: “Take action”
48 Whose Future is it Anyway Whose Future is it Anyway? A Student-Directed Transition Planning ProcessOverview: Written for students to read and work through at their own pace; teacher’s role:Facilitate student successTeach information requested by studentAdvocate for students
49 Purpose: Students have opportunities & supports to: Gain self-awareness of unique strengths & support needs and identify abilities, interests, & preferencesLearn skills to take a meaningful role in IEP/transition planning processPrepare for a more active role at planning meeting
50 The Self-Determined Learning Model of Instruction Is used in classrooms for goal setting for academic and transition outcomes (employment, post-secondary training or education, living, recreation/leisure)Can be used in variety of settings and for a variety of goal areas
51 Each phase has three components: Three phases: Set a goal, take action, and adjust goal or planEach phase has three components:Student questions – 12, written in first person voice for student focusTeacher objectives – provide guidance for teacher on each questionEducational supports – support students to work through the goals
53 Goal of the ProjectTo design, field-test, and disseminate an after-school youth empowerment program that teaches essential and practical self-determination skills to school-age youth with developmental disabilities (ages 14 to 21) to enhance their participation in planning their educational and transitional services.
54 Objectives Program design Curriculum development Pilot-test the entire program and each of the core elements of the programDisseminate program information to counties across the state and other parts of the nation.
55 Program DesignReview of the literature to identify key factors that influence youth with developmental disabilities’ acquisition of self-determination skills.Target Population. The project will target school-age youth with developmental disabilities ages 14 to 21. This group has repeatedly identified as low achievers in the important adult outcome areas such as employment, postsecondary education, independent living, and community integrationDetermine the core elements of the after-school youth empowerment program.
56 Curriculum Development Based on Review of the Literature, Identified 10 topicsDeveloped 15 Lessons to Address the TopicsMajor Features: Activity-Based, Interactive, Standard Procedures, and Theme repetitionDraft Was Reviewed by ManyField-Testing in Oconee & Pickens
57 The 10 Topics Personal Strengths and Weaknesses Identifying Needs and WantsGoalsCharacteristics, Setting, Planning, AccomplishingChoice-MakingDecision-MakingProblem-solvingEducational PlanningEmployment Goal PlanningProblem Solving at WorkIndependent Living Goals
59 The 15 Lessons Kickoff to Self-Determination Who Am I – My Metaphors Needs and WantsWhat is Success? (S-T Goals)What is Success? (L-T Goals)Decision-Making and Choice-Making (1)Decision-Making and Choice-Making (2)Problem SolvingEducational Goal PlanningEducational Planning and Transition PortfolioGoals Setting for EmploymentCoping with Problems at WorkIndependent Living SkillsSD Review, Reflections, and PosttestCelebration
60 Standard ProceduresStudents with disabilities need a structure to followThe structures in this program is “1-2-3 Break”The structures emphasize steps need to take for making choices and decision, setting goals, and attaining goals.
61 1, 2, 3 BREAK 1 – Know yourself 2 – Value yourself 3 – Plan your life B – Be in controlR – Realize your optionsE – Evaluate your optionsA – Act out the best choiceK – Know you did the best
62 Activities and Interactions The Hall of Fame PostersGuest SpeakersRole PlayingVideosDigital Pictures for Self-ReflectionsIndependent Goal SettingClass DiscussionsWorkbook Activities
63 Field-Test: Student Information DistrictsClassesRegular High School & Career CenterLD & MDGenderPlacementTeacher Support
64 Major Activities Kickoff in Seneca: Coach Jones and Radio (Video) Poster: Famous People with DisabilitiesStrengths and Weaknesses – PicturesStudent Participation Level
65 What Works, What Not Keeping Activities Realistic Lecture Be Engaging Encourage Group InvolvementFocus on Abilities, not DisabilitiesLectureExtensive ReadingExtensive Writing
66 Issues and Considerations in Self-Determination Assessment: What to Assess? Observable Behaviors versus Internal ProcessingTypical Performance versus Highest PotentialObjective versus SubjectivePersonal Expectations versus Societal ExpectationsExceptional versus Typical (Do typical people do these?)School versus Home/CommunityHome Living Routines versus Job PerformanceFamily Background versus Cultural Norm
67 Qualitative (In-Depth) or Quantitative (Checklist)? Issues and Considerations in Self-Determination Assessment: How to Assess?Qualitative (In-Depth) or Quantitative (Checklist)?Commercially Available versus Self-DevelopedScenario-Based versus Multiple-ChoiceCurriculum-Based versus Standard-BasedNorm-Referenced versus Criterion-Referenced
68 Student Role in Self-Determination Assessment Issues and Considerations in Self-Determination Assessment: Who to Involve?Student Role in Self-Determination AssessmentFamily’s role in Self-Determination AssessmentEducator’s Role in Self-Determination AssessmentService Personnel’s Role in Self-Determination Assessment
69 So, What, Who and How?Purpose determines focus areas for assessmentPurpose dictates participants of assessmentPurpose determines methods of data collectionPurpose dictates usage of assessment results
70 Purpose of AssessmentPromoting self-awarenessInstructional planningService DeterminationStudent progress and evaluation of interventions/servicesMaking accommodations in the environment
71 Examples of Available Instruments The Arc’s Self-Determination Scale (Wheeler, 1995)The Self-Determination Battery (Hoffman, Field, & Swallows, 1995)The Self-Determination Profile Package: An Assessment Package (Curtis, 1996)Choice Maker Self-Determination Assessment (Martin & Marshall, 1996)