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Journey Toward Self-Determination: Voices of Students With Disabilities Who Participated in a Secondary Transition Program on a Community College Campus

Journey Toward Self-Determination: Voices of Students With Disabilities Who Participated in a Secondary Transition Program on a Community College Campus

Four students with disabilities enrolled in a secondary transition program located at a community college were interviewed to learn more about their transition experiences. One of the issues they touched on was self-determination. This study is a part of the larger qualitative narrative effort but with a specific focus on exploring participants’ perceptions regarding their journey toward self-determination. Field and Hoffman’s model of self-determination (i.e., know yourself, value yourself, plan, act and experience outcomes, and learn) guided the data re-examination. Themes found in students’ stories were (a) personal factors associated with the construct of self-determination, (b) environments and experiences that foster self-determination, and (c) the individualized education program meeting as a significant tool for supporting students’ building of skills leading to self-determination. The journey toward self-determination for the four narrators was formative and complex and highlights the need to promote its practice. The authors conclude that the study’s methodology promoting joint recollection and reflection about significant life events can enhance students’ understanding and appreciation of their acquisition of self-determination skills.

APA Citation: 

Ankeny, E. M., & Lehmann, J. P. (2011). Journey Toward Self-Determination Voices of Students With Disabilities Who Participated in a Secondary Transition Program on a Community College Campus. Remedial and Special education, 32(4), 279-289.

Year of Publication: 
2011
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