2Defining Transition Assessment What’s YOUR Definition? Share with Partner & Enhance/AdaptDivision of Career Development & TransitionTransition assessment is "the ongoing process of collecting data on the individual’s strengths, needs, preferences, and interests as they relate to the demands of current and future working, educational, living, and personal, and social environments. Assessment data serve as the common thread in the transition process and form the basis for defining goals and services to be included in the IEP" (Sitlington, 1996).How does it compare?From this discussion a statement of beliefs emerged. At this time the group is not sure how the statement will be used beyond a common understanding for the group. The statement is: IOWA DEFINITION: Transition Assessment is an ongoing, coordinated, systematic process that: · Collects/gathers relevant (appropriate) information/data on a student’s interests, preferences, strengths and needs as they relate to the student’s post secondary expectations for living, learning, and working; · Begins at least by the time the student reaches middle school and continues until the student graduates or ages out; · Provides data from which to plan and make decisions that assist the student to move to post-secondary activities of living, learning, and working; · Involves input from student, family, school personnel, and other relevant stakeholders such as adult agencies, related services personnel (the IEP team) The group also identified a few parameters for its work. We will: Not “put something out” until we know that its sound enough to build on. Build on existing systems/initiatives, to the maximum extent possible. Produce products that are “Do-Able” not burdensome. Continue to build buy-in as we progress Remember that change takes time and that we need baby-steps—but won’t stop at the first step. At the next meeting we will review our transition assessment statement, come to a consensus understanding of assessment and develop an action plan. It was decided that a priority need for the field is guidance on what is meant by age appropriate transition assessments and how to do quality transition assessments.
4Transition Assessment: Where Do You Start? Process (or means to a result) not a end or point in timeMust have a Plan in PlaceGuiding QuestionsAssessment PlanAssessment SelectionUsing DataWho can assist with assessment?Adapted from: Noonan, P., Morningstar, M., and Clark, G. (2003). Transition Assessment: The Big Picture. Retrieved Month Day, Year, from the University of Kansas, Department of Special Education, Transition Coalition Web site:
5Activity: Assessment Planning Read either Heather or JamesIdentify who can assist with the assessment process
6Purpose of Transition Assessment Facilitating a self-awareness…Primary Assessment AreasStudent Self-awarenessStudent-centered leads to Self-determined assessments in which students are aware of their own strengths, needs, pref. and interests and can make decisions about their postschool goalsfamily-centered informationFor families, when they see the connection between current day to day concerns and subsequent environments and changing demands, they may be more likely to look beyond the present…families are often concerned about or request assessments that relate to the student’s strengths, present level of performance, social acceptance, health, support systems outside of school (employment, living, etc.), and alternative placements.School-centered information – present levels of performance of what??? For transition, this means major areas of adult life – IDEA mandates several postschool goal areas; others have indicated other areas… QOL from Halpern… Problems due to narrow range of assessment areas in the past… we still focus our PLEPs on academic and behavioral areas..for decision-making of critical life choices…through informing, discussing, and providing transition services by…Identifying students’ strengths, interests and preferencesDetermining post-secondary goalsDeveloping relevant learning experiences (instruction) & transition servicesIdentifying supports (linkages) needed to accomplish post-secondary goalsEvaluating instruction and supports.
7How can we prepare the student for the future? Guiding QuestionsAssessment PlanAssessment SelectionUsing DataSample QuestionsWhat do we know about the student’s strengths, preferences & needs in employment, education, living?How can we prepare the student for the future?What do I already know about the student to identify his/her postsecondary goals?What methods and sources will provide the information I need?What role will the student play in the assessment process?How will the assessment data be collected and used for transition planning?Is the student making progress toward his/her specific postsecondary goals (employment, education, living)?Share James and Heather Stories….
8Student Transition Questions What are my interests, skills and strengths related to employment, education, community living?Where do I want to work, live, go to school after high school?What courses do I want to take while in high school to graduate and also prepare for my future?What do I need to learn to do what I want?What do I need to improve in order to be successful in adult life?Adapted from: Greene & Kochhar-Bryant (2003). Pathways to successful transition for youth with disabilities. Merrill Prentice Hall
9Activity: Assessment Planning What are the critical questions related to assessment for Heather & James?
10Assessment Plan Characteristics: Guiding QuestionsAssessment PlanAssessment SelectionUsing DataVA Assessment Planning SummaryAssessment Plan Characteristics:Customized to specific types of information neededAppropriate to learning and response characteristicsUse assistive technology & accommodationsOccur in that influence development, planning, & implementation of transition planningInclude multiple ongoing activities to sample behaviors and skillsMust be verified by multiple methods & personsResults stored in user-friendly wayOccurs over time (multiple years)
11Activity: Assessment Planning What considerations must you make related to the assessment plan?
12What to Assess Review of Transition Assessments IL checklist Guiding QuestionsAssessment PlanAssessment SelectionUsing DataPeach State PathwaysReview of Transition AssessmentsWhat to AssessLearning StylesTemperamentBackground Info.AptitudesIL checklistInformation needs for Student-focused Transition PlanningIndependent Living SkillsInterestsSupports & AccommodationsSocial SkillsVocational & Occupational SkillsAdapted From: P. Kohler (2004)
13Transition Assessment BINGO! 1. Temperament 2. Learning Styles 3. Independent Living Background info. 5. Aptitudes 6. Interests 7. Social skills Supports & Accommodations 9. Vocational/ Occupational skillsAptitudes: Abilities and capabilities, such as mechanical, spatial, numerical and clerical skills.Temperament: Worker style preferences, such as working with people, things, data, and making decisions.Learning preferences and styles: Preferences for receiving and processing information, such as auditory, visual, and hands-on methods.Background information: Factors that influence performance and prognoses, such as special needs.Functional/Life skills: Personal and independent living skills, such as transportation, financial and housing management, and decision-making skills.Supports and Accommodation:Vocational and Occupational Skills: Skills required in actual jobs, such as specific technical, industrial, or other skills.Worker/Personal Characteristics: Traits, attitudes, values, employability and social skills.Interests: The student’s occupational and living preferences, including likes and dislikes.
14HOW to Assess Informal (cont) Standardized Informal Guiding QuestionsAssessment PlanAssessment SelectionUsing DataOnline Assessments and ResourcesHOW to AssessCommercially Available AssessmentsAppendix 5 B Sample Questions for Transition Planning & AssessmentStandardizedNorm-referencedCriterion-referencedInformalAnalysis of background info.InterviewsWork samplesCurriculum-based assessmentsInterest InventoriesInformal (cont)Observations & situational assessmentsAlternative assessmentsPortfoliosPerson-centered PlanningAssessing EnvironmentsE-JamVocational Integration IndexEcological InventoriesSupports Survey
15www.proedinc.com Informal Assessments for Transition Planning: Postsecondary Ed and TrainingIndependent Living and Community ParticipationEmployment and Career PlanningInformal Assessments for Transition Planning
16Sample Assessments: Career & Employment StandardizedInformal:Background InfoCareer interests:Interview:Work sample:Curriculum-basedObservation:PortfolioPerson-centered approachAssessing EnvironmentEcological InventoryE-JAMSupports SurveyVocational Integration Index
17Activity: Assessment Planning What are the critical areas of transition for Heather & James?What assessment methods would be appropriate?
18Results of transition assessments in IEP: Guiding QuestionsAssessment PlanAssessment SelectionUsing DataKSDE Transition PlanningResults of transition assessments in IEP:Included in present levels of educational performanceUsed to identify postsecondary goals (outcomes)Used to identify needed transition servicesSummary of PerformanceMonitoring instruction, progress & decisions about changesCoordinate assessment needs with adult agenciesSummarize and customize results to meet needs of outside agenciesCollaboration is critical! Who can help assessTo ensure better postschool outcomes, assessment information should be coordinated with adult services providers. To do this, a transition practitioner can involve outside agencies in the assessment process and structure the process to collect relevant information needed for adult providers (Sitlington, 1996).- Might be separate document – OR SOP…Results of ongoing assessment can be summarized and customized to meet the requirements of adult providers. With the family and student’s permission, assessment profiles can be transferred to adult providers (Sitlington, 1996).Collaboration is key with vocational educators, assistive technology specialists, rehabilitation counselors, employers, employee co-workers, financial aid personnel, social security counselors, and residential counselors (Sitlington et al., 1997).View a list of participant roles in a collaboration transition assessment process (Clark, 1998).This collaboration can impact the quality of adult services, and should provide longevity to the usefulness of the assessment data if carefully collected and reported.If not done well, the risk remains of lack of communication to adult service agencies regarding an individuals needs, preferences, and interests, thereby increasing the risk of a less-than-high quality adult life.Using age-appropriate transition assessments are now required under IDEA Now that transition assessments are a key component of the annual IEP, the results should be included in the present levels of educational performance part of the IEP. This information must be used to assist students with disabilities in making informed choices related to training, education, employment, and, where appropriate, independent living.In preparation for the IEP, schools should provide a student with tools needed to express his or her preferences, interests, and needs both prior to and during the meeting. Students can summarize the information obtained through the transition assessment process using a variety of methods, such as picture profiles, videos, voice recorders, among others (Lohrmann-O'Rourke & Gomez, 2001).Important PointStudents roles are changing during the IEP process. They are moving from being a passive participant to leading and directing the IEP meeting. They can be involved in creating an agenda, inviting all participants, and running the meeting. The current role of the special education teacher is expanding to include that of a group facilitator by providing as little or as much direction as is needed for each individual student.
19Overriding Theme“A well planned and executed assessment that results in a well-balanced understanding of a student’s performance is one of the most important contributions to generating critical objectives, effective instruction, and meaningful outcomes.”(Giles & Clark, 2001, pg. 80)Transition assessment should be thought of as a series of procedures that includes developing questions, collecting information, and making decisions about many topics related to transition.Remember, transition assessment is the ongoing process that focuses on a student's strengths, needs, preferences, and interests. Selecting the most appropriate assessments depends upon several guiding principals.Developing a plan for assessing students during transition is a critical element of an effective transition process. The major elements included within this plan might include how certain instruments and assessment methods were chosen, using the data in meaningful ways, sharing information and assessment results with outside agencies, and ensuring that the IEP includes good information in the present levels of educational performance.