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Effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on postsecondary students with learning disabilities

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Effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on postsecondary students with learning disabilities
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by Sharon L. Blatz.

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EFFECTS OF EXPLICIT INSTRUCTION OF SELF-DETERMINATION SKILLS ON
POSTSECONDARY STUDENTS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES













By

SHARON L. BLATZ


A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY



UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


2000














ACKNOWLEDGMENTS


Numerous individuals provided support and assistance throughout the course of this study. I am grateful to all of those who contributed to the success of this project.

First and foremost, my gratitude and appreciation go to those students who

participated in the study. The students' enthusiasm and efforts made this study not only possible but also rewarding.

I would also like to extend appreciation to the University Athletic Association's Office of Student Life. Their commitment to meeting the needs of student-athletes with learning disabilities made this study possible. My sincere thanks go to Dr. Keith Carodine, Timothy Aydt, Ann Hughes, Tony Meacham, Pat Meyers, Kay Puder, Dr. Jason Storch, Tom Williams, and Ivette Velez.

The Department of Special Education has provided me with assistance,

encouragement, and support throughout my program. By allowing me to offer this course they made this study possible. I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to Dr. James Mcleskey, Dr. Cary Reichard, Sharry Knight, Shaira Rivas-Otero, Vicki Tucker, and Michell Hicks.

The Transition Center at the University of Florida provided me with a number of professionally enriching opportunities during my program. The center also provided me with various forms of support. I would like to thank the following people for their








patience and support: Dr. Jeanne Repetto, Dr. Stuart Schwartz, Drew Andrews, Wilma Fritz, Rosabel Ruiz, and Christy Stuart.

A special group of individuals at the University of Florida called the "FIELD

Group" have contributed greatly to this project from its inception. I would like to thank the following members for their commitment to this group and its work: Dr. Duane Dede, Dr. Holly Lane, Dr. Chris Janelle, Dr. Cynthia Garvan, Timothy Aydt, Danielle Symons, and Tamara Duckworth.

The assistance of many individuals was required during the pretesting and

posttesting phases of this study. Without the assistance of these individuals, this study would not have been possible. Special thanks are extended to the following individuals: Michell Hicks, Katie Smith, Karen Kolinski, Erica Souder, Nolan Simmons, Dawn Graziani, Mary Ann Nelson, and Bennie Alexander.

My fellow doctoral students have enhanced this experience and provided me with camaraderie and emotional support. I would like to thank the following individuals who made this an enjoyable experience: Denise Clark, Elizabeth Hardman, Tamar Riley, Paige Pullen, Drew Andrew, Christy Stuart, David Lasseter, and Adory Beutel.

I would also like to thank the members of my committee-Dr. Jeanne Repetto,

Dr. Holly Lane, Dr. Cecil Mercer, Dr. Duane Dede, and Dr. Cynthia Garvan. I have been extremely fortunate to have been able to work with each of these individuals. The lessons I have learned will go with me throughout my life.

As my committee chair, Dr. Jeanne Repetto has taught me a great deal about professionalism and life. Her ability to approach both with the highest level of








commitment and enthusiasm has been a great inspiration. Staying focused and being proud of every accomplishment no matter how small are lessons I have learned from her.

A tremendous amount of gratitude goes to both Dr. Holly Lane and Dr. Cynthia Garvan. These two individuals have provided encouragement, support, direction, patience,,and commitment to me and to this project. I cherish the expertise and guidance they have given me, but even more importantly the friendship.

Finally, I would like to thank my family and friends. Without their unending

support and encouragement this endeavor would never have been possible. The patience and love they have given me now and always made this accomplishment possible.













TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page

ACKN OW LEDGM EN TS ............................................................................................ ii

ABSTRACT .............................................................................................................. vii

CHAPTERS

1 INTRODUCTION TO THE PROBLEM ...................................................... I

Rationale for the Study ................................................................................ 3
Scope of the Study ....................................................................................... 5
Delim itations of the Study .................................................................... 5
Lim itations of the Study ...................................................................... 5
Definition of Term s .............................................................................. 6
Overview of Rem aining Chapters ................................................................ 7

2 REVIEW OF THE LITERA TURE ............................................................... 8

Post-Secondary Education ........................................................................... 8
Students w ith LD ................................................................................... 8
Successful Adults and College Students with LD .................................. 9
Barriers to Success .................................................................................. 11
Self-Determ ination .................................................................................... 17
Defining Self-Determination ............................................................. 17
Theory Basis of Self-Determ ination .................................................... 18
M odels of Self-Determ ination ............................................................ 25
Current Self-determ ination Curricula .................................................. 32
Self-Determination and Post-Secondary Education .............................. 37
Research Im plications ................................................................................ 40

3 IN TRODUCTION TO THE STUDY .......................................................... 42

Description of Hypotheses ........................................................................ 42
M ethods ....................................................................................................... 43
Participants ........................................................................................ 43
Design ................................................................................................ 43
Instrum ents ......................................................................................... 44









Procedures ............................................................................................ 47
Treatm ent of Data ................................................................................. 53
Summ ary .................................................................................................... 53

4 RESULTS .................................................................................................. 55

Introduction ................................................................................................ 55
Statistical Analysis .................................................................................... 56
Initial Group Equivalence and Bias ...................................................... 56
Post Intervention Analysis .................................................................. 63
Further Analysis .................................................................................. 65
Between-Test Correlations ................................................................... 71
Journal Them es .................................................................................. 74
Summ ary .................................................................................................... 75

5 DISCUSSION .............................................................................................. 76

Introduction ................................................................................................ 76
Overview of Study ..................................................................................... 76
Review of the Literature ..................................................................... 76
M ethods ............................................................................................ 77
Discussion of Results .................................................................................. 78
Review of Result ................................................................................ 78
Im plications for the Profession ............................................................ 84
Future Research ................................................................................... 87
Summ ary .................................................................................................. 90

APPENDICES

A COURSE SYLLABUS .............................................................................. 92

B SUMMARY OF INSTRUCTIOR'S DIARY ............................................. 97

C INFORM ED CON SENT SHEET ................................................................. 104

D ADVOCATING INTERVIEW SCORE SHEET .......................................... 106

E SELF-DETERMINATION ITEM ANALYSIS ............................................. 108

REFERENCES ........................................................................................................ 115

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH .................................................................................... 122













Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirement for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy EFFECTS OF EXPLICIT INSTRUCTION OF SELF-DETERMINATION
SKILLS ON POST-SECONDARY STUDENTS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES

By

Sharon L. Blatz

December 2000

Chairperson: Jeanne B. Repetto
Major Department: Special Education

This study examined the effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on post-secondary students with learning disabilities. Participants were 36 post-secondary student-athletes with learning disabilities. Participants were randomly assigned to the experimental or control group. The experimental group participated in a semester-long course. In this course, the participants were taught through explicit instruction the information and skills required for self-determination (i.e., what a learning disability is and how their particular learning disability affects them; rights and responsibilities associated with having a learning disability; goal setting; and advocating skills). The control group received no self-determination instruction.

The intervention was a semester-long course that met two days each week for 50 minutes. During each of the first four weeks of the semester, one additional class meeting was held. The participants were also required to meet with the instructor individually to








discuss the manifestations of their particular learning disability. Dependent variables included self-determination scores, self-advocating scores, anxiety scores, and study skills scores. In addition, the participants were required to keep a journal about each class to determine benefits that might not be reflected in other measures and to give support to quantitative findings. The instructor kept a diary to assist in the replication and modification of the intervention.

Statistical analysis of the data revealed significant group differences on the selfadvocacy measure. Specifically, post-secondary students with learning disabilities in the experimental group explained their disabilities better than students in the control group. The differences at posttest on the self-determination, anxiety, and study skills measures were not significant. The students' journals displayed themes of greater understanding about themselves and their learning disability.

The findings of this research hold important implications for professionals who provide services to post-secondary students with learning disabilities and researchers in self-determination. The results of this study support the idea that explicit instruction of self-determination skills with post-secondary students with learning disabilities promotes self-advocacy. The ability to self-advocate is critical for post-secondary students with learning disabilities, and effective self-advocacy instruction should be a focus of professionals in the field.














CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION TO THE PROBLEM


To be successful in life, adults with learning disabilities (LD) require selfdetermination. This statement is true for adults in the work force and in post-secondary education. In fact, the laws that protect the rights of individuals with disabilities, the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) (1990) and Section 504 of the Vocational Rehabilitation Act, require individuals with disabilities to act in a self-determined manner. To receive any accommodations after the completion of secondary school, individuals with disabilities are required to self-disclose their disability. Effective self-disclosure requires self-determination. The components of self-determination include (a) selfconcept and self-esteem, (b) knowing one's rights, (c) self-advocacy, (d) planning and decision making, and (e) acting on and evaluating one's plan.

Researchers in the field of special education who study adults and post-secondary education have established the need for training in the many components of selfdetermination (Adelman & Vogel, 1993; Anderson, Kazmierski, & Cronin, 1995; Brier, 1994; Brinckerhoff, 1994, 1996; Field & Hoffman, 1994; Field, Hoffman, & Posch, 1997; Morningstar, 1997; Ness & Price, 1990; Sands & Wehmeyer, 1996; Sitlington, Frank, & Carson, 1992). Many of these professionals have created curriculum materials for the instruction of self-determination. Unfortunately, most of these curriculum materials are








designed for students at the secondary level. Although using these materials has been found to be effective for increasing the self-determination scores of secondary students with LD (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak, Rose, & Bursuck, 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996a, Van Reusen & Bos, 1990), no link has been demonstrated between the use of these curricula and the ability to be self-determined in a post-secondary setting. In other words, no longitudinal studies of self-determination instruction have examined the application of self-determination skills in post-secondary settings. Because the materials and instruction in self-determination have maintained a secondary focus, this approach has no effect on the self-determination of post-secondary students who are identified as having a learning disability after high school.

The rapidly increasing number of students with LD at the post-secondary level is well documented in the National Longitudinal Transitional Study (Blackorby & Wagner, 1996). An increase in comprehensive and effective services for individuals with LD at the post-secondary level has not been as evident. The discrepancy between the number of students with disabilities and the level of services at the post-secondary level is a reflection of the lack of self-determination of college students with LD. Students with LD, due to their lack of self-determination, have not demanded appropriate services. Without self-determination, college students with LD are ill-equipped (a) to explain their own disability and needs; (b) to initiate, manage, and even demand the appropriate services; (c) to educate those around them about LD; (d) to plan and evaluate interactions with others; and (e) to establish an effective support network. Self-determination is what enables a student with a learning disability to do all of the things listed above.








Despite efforts to develop self-determination in students at the secondary level, students with LD at the post-secondary level are not self-determined (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1996; Brinckerhoff, Shaw, & McGuire, 1992; Cullen, Shaw, & McGuire, 1996; Greenbaum, Graham, & Scales, 1995; Norton, 1997). Therefore, explicitly teaching the skills of self-determination to post-secondary students with LD is necessary. Planning such instruction would require consideration of the key elements of self-determination and the key characteristics of successful adults.

Reiff, Ginsberg, and Gerber (1995) listed the characteristics of successful adults in two categories: internal and external. The four internal factors listed were (a) a feeling of control over one's life, (b) a desire to succeed, (c) a goal orientation, and (d) reframing one's self-perception. The external factors of success were (a) persistence, (b) goodness of fit, (c) creativity, and (d) social ecologies. The characteristics of successful adults are linked to themes of control, acceptance, support, planning, and desire. Self-determination skills, such as knowing and valuing oneself, decision making, planning and evaluating, and knowing one's rights, are all associated with the themes of success. The development of successful college students and adults with LD can depend on effective instruction of selfdetermination skills at the post-secondary level.

Rationale for the Study

The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction in self-determination skills on college students with LD. In particular, this study examined the effects of self-determination instruction on students' levels of self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills.









This study was based on the models of self-determination, their underlying

theories, and the demonstration of a need for self-determination among post-secondary students with LD. The underlying theories of self-determination are normalization, equality of opportunity, self-efficacy, and cognitive evaluation. These theories have been used and combined to establish models of self-determination. Five well-known models of self-determination were reviewed to assist in the development of the intervention strategy: (a) Wehmeyer's model; (b) Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman's model; (c) Abery's model; (d) Powers, Sowers, Turner, Nesbitt, Knowles, and Ellison's Model; and

(e) Field and Hoffman's model.

Curriculum materials on self-determination have been developed based on the models of self-determination. These curriculum materials were designed for secondary students. For the purposes of this study, portions of these curricula were adapted to meet the needs of post-secondary students. The course materials were selected by how well the activities and objectives matched the objectives of the self-determination intervention used in this study.

The intervention was based on the following objectives:

1. Teach the meaning of learning disability.

2. Increase a student's understanding of his/her personal learning disability.

3. Inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability.

4. Increase a student's ability to communicate effectively about his/her learning disabilities.

5. Teach the students how to set both long-term and short-term goals.








6. Teach the students how to plan effectively and evaluate their progress.

7. Demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful adult.

A curriculum was designed around these objectives and was taught as a semester-long class. The general syllabus (see Appendix A) and the instructor's diary (see Appendix B) provide more detailed information about the intervention instruction.

Scope of the Study

In this section, the delimitations, limitations, and essential terminology of this study are described. These aspects of the study are important to the interpretation and generalization of the results.

Delimitations of the Study

This study was delimited by the use of college student-athletes with LD as the participants. These participants face different demands than the average college student (Sanders, 1997). The participants in the intervention were restricted by athletic eligibility requirements. The geographic location of the university in a medium-sized, north-central Florida city, Gainesville, is another delimiting factor. The participants were not selected based on any previously measured or reported ability to be self-determined. Gender and ethnicity were also not considered in the selection process. Limitations of the Study

This study was limited by the exclusive use of college student-athletes with LD as the participants. Each participant was diagnosed with an LD prior to selection for the study. These diagnoses were reached at varying times and by varying standards. Although








no specific information was known about the different standards applied, each diagnosis had been judged acceptable by the university's Office for Student Services. The inability to use a pure randomization process in the participant selection was a limiting factor. Definition of Terms

Comprehension of the concepts, intervention, procedures, and variables in this study requires an understanding of the relevant terminology. This section provides a definition of the essential terms as the terms were used in this study.

Self-determination is the ability to make effective decisions about and control

one's own future, as much as possible, by having a complete understanding of one's self and one's rights and responsibilities.

Self-advocacy is the ability to communicate effectively and stand up for one's own needs, rights, and desires.

Self-awareness is the ability to recognize and accept one's abilities, limitations, interests, and desires.

A learning disability is a difficulty in information processing that creates

significant discrepancies between a person's ability and achievement. A learning disability must be diagnosed by a qualified professional.

Post-secondary education most often refers to any educational experience after

high school. This definition is used in much of the research reviewed in this study. For the purposes of this study and its participants, post-secondary education refers to a competitive 4-year university.








Successful adults in the literature base discussed refers to individuals who are actively employed, living independently, involved in the community, and report active social experiences.

Support systems refer to groups or individuals that provide information, build up self-esteem, assist without doing, and listen and provide feedback. A strong support system requires cooperation and collaboration.

Overview of Remaining Chapters

The second chapter of this study is a literature review. The literature review

provides in-depth information on theories and research in the areas of self-determination for students with LD and post-secondary education for students with LD. The third chapter provides the details of the study design and intervention. The procedures to be used for participant selection and test giving are provided. A detailed description of the intervention course is also provided in Chapter 3. Chapter 4 contains the results of the study. The results of the ANCOVA's for each hypothesis are provided. Results of various follow-up tests are also provided. The fifth and final chapter provides a discussion of the relevance of the findings. Connections to previous literature and research are discussed. Implications for professionals in the field of special education are presented along with possible future research directions.














CHAPTER 2
REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE


The purpose of this chapter is to provide the essential background knowledge about post-secondary students with LD and the necessity for them to be more selfdetermined. The chapter is divided into two major sections: post-secondary education for students with LD and self-determination. Post-secondary education is discussed in three main sections: (a) students with LD, (b) successful adults and college students, and (c) barriers to success. The section on self-determination has five components. The first component includes a discussion of the definitions of self-determination. The next three components--theories of self-determination, models of self-determination, and current curricula focusing of self-determination--provide information on the most recognized elements of each topic. The final component, self-determination and post-secondary education, provides information on the applications of self-determination at the postsecondary level. In each section, studies are presented, discussed, and related to one another.

Post-Secondary Education

Students with LD

Over the past 10 years, the number of students with disabilities who are attending college has been steadily increasing. Among students with disabilities, students with LD








have been the fastest growing population (Blackorby & Wagner, 1996). Two factors that have contributed to this increase include the passage of the American with Disabilities Act of 1990 and improvement of transition services at the secondary level. The adjustment and success of college students with LD, like most things involving students with LD, vary from student to student. Researchers have attempted to determine what individual characteristics or external factors affect the adjustment and success in postsecondary educational settings of students with LD. Successful Adults and College Students with LD

Reiff and fellow researchers (1995) interviewed 71 adults with LD after

narrowing down the initial list of nominated individuals. The 71 adults with LD were placed either into the highly successful or moderately successful group. The researchers analyzed all of the interviews for themes and commonalties. A list of eight characteristics of successful adults with LD under two headings--internal and external factors-was devised. The four internal factors listed were (a) a feeling of control over one's life, (b) a desire to succeed, (c) a goal orientation, and (d) refraining. Refraining is the ability to accept that one has a learning disability, determine exactly what differences that means for oneself, and make life decisions based on that knowledge. The external factors of success provided were (a) persistence, (b) goodness of fit, (c) creativity, and (d) social ecologies. Goodness of fit refers to finding activities and careers that emphasize one's strengths and limit one's weaknesses. Goodness of fit is the external manifestation of refraining. Social ecologies are external support. Individuals who experience moral and psychological support during childhood proactively find individuals and/or groups that are supportive








in their adult life. Other researchers reported similar characteristics associated with successful adults (Anderson et al., 1995; Spekman, Goldberg, & Herman, 1993; Spekman, Herman, & Vogel, 1992). Spekman, Herman, and Vogel also stated risk factors associated with being unsuccessful: (a) low self-esteem, (b) low frustration, (c) poverty, and (d) negative attitudes.

Research on college students with LD has a different focus. The majority of the research focuses on adjustment issues, services provided, and student and faculty attitudes. Because college students with LD are also adults with LD, the characteristics that make adults successful make college students successful. The application of success factors in college is different than in adult life, but the underlying traits needed are the same. For example, students must re-identify themselves as LD to new professors each semester, which requires well-developed self-advocacy and interpersonal skills. In contrast, adults only need to use these skills when first requesting accommodations in the work place.

Sanders and DuBois (1996) focused on what characteristics and behaviors at the post-secondary setting most affect the adjustment of students with disabilities. The researchers used self-reporting on the Student's Adaptation to College Questionnaire. The instrument was given to 29 full- or part-time college students with disabilities. Students with more effective problem-solving skills and good support systems were the most successful in their adjustment to college. Satisfaction with the services provided by the offices for students with disabilities also had a significant impact on the level of adjustment to college. Interestingly, students with physical disabilities reported more








day-to-day stress, but this was primarily related to lack of physical access to facilities. Students with physical disabilities found faculty to be very helpful and supportive. Students with LD reported the opposite experience. The students with LD did not list a high level of day-to-day stress but had more frustration overall and felt very little faculty support. The existence of a higher level of overall anxiety among individuals with learning disabilities has been supported by research (Gregg, Hoy, King, Moreland, & Jagota, 1992; Morrison & Cosden, 1997; Ness & Price, 1990). Price (1988) reported that individuals with learning disabilities could perceive society as hostile, demanding, and threatening. Such barriers to success for college students with LD are well documented. Barriers to Success

Most of the articles written about college students with disabilities address three main barriers: faculty attitudes, knowledge of service providers, and student knowledge and advocacy skills. These studies were limited to surveys and self-reports. The researchers contend that the rapid growth in the number of students with LD going to college has caused these barriers to exist. Many of these researchers believe that, with effort and education, these barriers could be turned into effective tools and supports.

Faculty attitudes. Faculty attitudes about students with LD have not been

positive. Because the methods of data collection have been surveys and self-reports, the majority with fewer than 50% return rates, one might expect that the faculty taking the time to return the forms would be those with a more positive attitude. Results by many researchers demonstrate the exact opposite. Most researchers found faculty had a negative attitude about LD and providing accommodations (Aune & Kroeger, 1997;









Benham, 1997; Sanders & DuBois, 1995; Scott, 1994, 1995; Stagne & Milne, 1996). In a few recent studies, researchers reported improvements in faculty attitudes. Norton (1997) focused on community college professors and reported that the majority were very willing to accommodate but lacked knowledge on how to accommodate. Vogel, Leyser, Wyland, and Brulle (1999) also reported a more receptive attitude about providing accommodations.

Among those faculty willing to accommodate, differences were reported. Benham (1997) found that male faculty with higher levels of education and more years teaching were the least willing to provide accommodations. Vogel and colleagues (1999) did not find this result but did indicate that a majority of the responders were women and that the type of accommodations did vary across genders. Women and younger faculty members were more willing to provide the more time-consuming types of accommodations, such as personal tutoring, note outlines, and specific study guides. Older faculty were willing to make accommodations that took less time or effort on their part, such as allowing students to tape record class, have notetakers, and have extended time on tests with a proctor. All of the researchers recommended that faculty should be better educated about learning disabilities, and many of the faculty members interviewed requested more information (Cullen et al., 1996; Benham, 1997; Stagne & Milne, 1996).

Knowledge of service providers. Faculty members need more information about LD, but they are not the only staff members whose lack of knowledge was listed as a barrier by college students with LD. The knowledge of counselors, tutors, and peers was also listed as a factor that affect the successful adjustment of college students with LD








(Sanders & Dubois, 1996). Students with LD did not participate fully in class and group tutoring sessions as a result of this perceived lack of understanding and knowledge on the part of peers and tutors (Stagne & Milne, 1996). Relationships are keys to the development of effective support systems of most successful students, and knowledge and understanding are important factors in these relationships.

Tutors provide college students with LD much more than educational information. Tutors serve as mentors, friends, and counselors (Vogel, Hruby, & Adelman, 1993). Students with LD reported that tutors who did not understand LD were frustrating and ineffective (Sanders & Dubois, 1996; Stagne & Milne, 1996). Reiff et al. (1995) reported that trust was the key to effective relationships. Individuals with LD did not form trusting and open relationships with tutors who did not understand LD. Researchers reported that tutoring is one of the most common accommodations provided at the postsecondary level (Bigaj, Shaw, Cullen, McGuire, & Yost, 1995; Hock, Schumaker, & Deshler, 1995; Vogel et al., 1993; Vogel, Leonard, Scales, Hayeslip, Hermansa, & Donnells, 1998). Students with LD need specially trained tutors (Hock, 1998; Hock, Deshler, & Schumaker, 1993; Rings & Sheets, 1991). The tutors provided, however, are often peers or graduate students who have no background or knowledge of LD. Vogel et al. (1998), who researched services provided, commented on the fact that current research only gathers information on the services provided, not the quality of the services.

Students with LD report the importance of peers who are understanding and knowledgeable, but research has not progressed beyond this level. Sanders and DuBois (1996) reported that peer acceptance is important to the successful adjustment of college








students with LD. Stage and Milne (1996) reported reduced performance in academic settings due to a lack of peer support and understanding. The use of peers as tutors intensifies the effects of inadequate peer knowledge and understanding.

As with tutors and peers, counselors are essential members of the support group of college student with LD. Researchers found that students need to be able to trust counselors and rely on them for guidance and support (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Norton, 1997; Reiffet al., 1995; Sanders & DuBois, 1996; Stagne & Milne, 1996). In a study of services provided to college students with LD, Bigaj and colleagues (1995) explored the role of academic counselors, or LD specialists, employed in office for students with disabilities. They found that many of the 503 institutions returning surveys indicated that this position had no qualifications directly related to LD or any type of disabilities. A majority of the individuals in this position held a master's degree, but the field in which the master's degree was earned often was unrelated to disabilities. Some 4-year institutions employed individuals with doctorates in this position, but again the doctorates were often in unrelated fields. Students with LD have special advising needs related to scheduling and course selection. This advice is quite often being given by professionals that lack the proper knowledge base to help the students. The success of college students with LD is heavily influenced by the academic counseling relationship. Vogel and Adelman (1992) reported the benefits of having highly trained advisors for students with LD. Counselors who lack knowledge provide an additional hurdle for students with LD.








The emotional stress associated with having a learning disability is well

documented (Adelman & Vogel, 1993; Bender & Golden, 1990; Durlak et al., 1994; Gregg et al., 1992; Ness & Price, 1990). Anxiety about having a learning disability is one of the most often seen emotional stressors. Gregg and her colleagues reported levels of frustration and anxiety in individuals with LD that mirrored scores for individuals with posttraumatic stress. Continuously high levels of anxiety can lead to a perceived lack of control over one's life. A lack of understanding about one's disability can contribute greatly to an increase in anxiety. Yet another source of anxiety is the difficulty many individuals with LD experience trying to locate others who can help them understand their disability. Many professionals studying individuals with LD listed psychological counseling as critical to student success (Brier, 1994; Gregg et al., 1992; Malian & Love, 1998; Rosenthal, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993).

The same researchers also reported that students with LD use psychological

support at a very low rate. The frustration with and fear of psychological counseling by students with LD are thought to stem from the counselors' lack of understanding of LD (Sanders & DuBois, 1996). Quality counseling services can make a difference in a student with LD cultivating many of the factors listed as essential to becoming successful adults with LD.

Student knowledge and advocacy skills. Students' lack of knowledge about their learning disabilities and their anxiety about talking about their learning disabilities cause many problems at the post-secondary level. The inability of students with LD to express knowledge about their learning disabilities to others is probably the most agreed upon








point in the literature on college students with LD. Faculty and the students themselves stated that the students lacked the ability to communicate effectively about their learning disabilities. Researchers have found this lack of knowledge and communication on the part of students with learning disability at all post-secondary settings (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoffet al., 1992; Cullen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993, 1998). Students with LD must initiate and manage services at the post-secondary level according to the laws that regulate services. An inability to understand his/her learning disabilities and advocate for services can derail a college student with LD before the individual even gets started. At the very least, a student with LD who cannot advocate effectively for him-/herself is dependent upon all the professionals mentioned previously, most of whom lack the knowledge and ability to provide appropriate assistance and support to the college student with LD.

Understanding one's learning disability and being able to advocate for and manage one's rights are a part of self-determination. Teaching students the concepts and skills involved in self-determination is crucial to their success. Self-determination encompasses many of the characteristics of successful adults and has an impact on all of them. Researchers recommend teaching the skills of self-determination to all students with LD (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoffet al, 1992; Cullen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993; Vogel et al., 1998). Students at the post-secondary level should not be overlooked in this effort to educate and promote self-determination among students with learning disabilities.








Self-Determination

Defining Self-Determination

Self-determination is a current "buzz" word in the field of special education. Selfdetermination has been defined in a variety of ways. Field (1996, p. 41) listed the most common definitions (see Table 1). The main reason for the differing definitions is that researchers approached the concept of self-determination from different perspectives. Despite the differing backgrounds, commonalties can be found among the definitions. All of the definitions reflect the elements of freedom, decision-making, and determining one's own future. In 1993, an effort was made to create one clear definition of selfdetermination. Campeau and Wolman (as cited in Field, 1996, p. 42) reported that the definition agreed upon at that time was "choosing and enacting choices to control one's life-to the maximum extent possible-based on knowing and valuing oneself, and in pursuit of one's own needs, interests, and values." Even though this agreed-upon definition was constructed, professionals researching self-determination prefer to use their individual definitions.

Self-determination is a complicated concept even after it is defined. Many terms such as empowerment and self-advocacy are often used interchangeably with selfdetermination. Self-determination, however, is thought to encompass those terms. Selfdetermination is about having knowledge, having the courage and self-esteem to use that knowledge, using the knowledge, learning from the experience, and reconstructing the knowledge based on experience. Self-determination is a complicated concept and, thus,








can be viewed from many perspectives. Theories from many avenues of study have been

used in the development of self-determination models.


Table 1

Self-Determination Definitions

Author(s) Year Definition

Deci and Ryan 1985 the capacity to choose and to have those choices be the determinants of one's actions

Ward 1988 the attitudes, abilities, and skills that lead people to define goals for themselves and to take the initiative to reach these goals Wehmeyer and Berkobien 1991 the abilities and attitudes required for one to act as the primary causal agent in one's life and to make choices regarding one's actions free from undue external influence or interference

American Heritage Dictionary 1992 determination of one's own fate or course of action without compulsion; free will Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman 1992 choosing and enacting choice in persistent pursuit of self-interest Field and Hoffman 1994 one's ability to define and achieve goals based on a foundation of knowing and valuing oneself


Theory Basis of Self-Determination


Self-determination is grounded in a variety of theories. This section provides background information into each theory. The essential components of these theories


make up the basis for self-determination and its models.








Normalization. The roots of self-determination can be found in the normalization principle. The normalization principle was created out of the work of Benji Nine. Ward (1996) described Nirje's work with individuals with cognitive disabilities and how the concept of normalization was developed. Through his work, Nine discovered that all individuals should be involved in their own choices. The principle of normalization is that individuals with disabilities should have available to them the experiences and choices of life that are as close as possible to that of mainstream society. Normalization meant teaching individuals with disabilities how to make choices and giving them the same opportunities and experiences as mainstream society as often as possible.

Ward (1996) explained how explicitly teaching skills such as decision making, selfadvocacy, and group membership was necessary to facilitate normalization. The skills of self-determination are very similar to that of normalization and both have the goal of providing individuals with disabilities as much independence as possible. Selfdetermination applies the principles of normalization to groups of individuals with disabilities outside of Nire's original group. In the normalization principle, society was expected to provide individuals with disabilities opportunities for independence while self-determination principles support individuals with disabilities are entitled to the same independence as other members of society and should take control of their own destinies.

Equality of opportunity. Equality of opportunity is actually a combination of two areas of thought--self-regulation and reconstructivism. Equality of opportunity is about creating situations that are a match between an individual's capacity and opportunity (Mithaug, 1996). Individuals must know their strengths and weakness








enough to make choices that will create more opportunities for success. Individuals must determine that the gain expected from an action makes the risk presented worth taking. The individuals must know and utilize their resources. Knowing one's strengths, making good choices, and using available resources well are all part of self-regulation. Selfregulation requires individuals to be effective problem solvers. Mithaug (1996, p. 153) reported that self-regulated problem solving includes the following four components:

1. Finding the match between capacity and opportunity that is necessary to commence goal pursuit,

2. Developing a strategy for optimizing gain,

3. Acting on that strategy to change environmental circumstance to produce expected gain, and

4. Adjusting to results by repeating the cycle until the goal has been either attained or abandoned.

Self-determination takes the same cyclical approach as equal opportunity theory. Being taught to set goals, make decisions, and then adjust future actions based on the outcome of the original action is critical for individuals with disabilities.

Equal opportunity theorists believe that improving an individual's capacity for autonomous thought and action and increasing that individual's opportunities for choicemaking will give that individual the greatest possibility of becoming self-determined. These theorists also believe that society has a responsibility to provide individuals who are less fortunate with the most opportunities. Being a self-determined individual is








dependent on matching individual capacity with environmental opportunities. Three assumptions are essential to the equal opportunity theory (Mithuag, 1996, p. 161):

1. Every person is an individual with a special set of talents, interests, and needs;

2. Every person deserves a fair chance to express those unique attributes in pursuit of self-defined ends in life;

3. As a consequence, there can be no overarching social mechanism for sorting individuals into categories of deserving and undeserving when it comes to distributing access to the fair chance.

By stating these assumptions, Mithaug recognized the fact that being self-determined cannot happen in a vacuum. Society and one's environment have a significant role in a person's ability to be self-determined. Self-determination is about providing each individual with equal access to his/her dreams and goals by raising his/her capacity and opportunities to maximum level.

Self-efficacy. Bandura's (1977) self-efficacy theory maintains that human

behavior is affected by a personal sense of control. Individuals who believe that they are in control are going to be more self-determined. A person's level of involvement in his/her life is directly related to the level of belief of being able to affect his/her life's course.

Individuals with high levels of self-efficacy feel, think, and act in an optimistic

manner (Bandura, 1977). Individuals with high levels of self-efficacy tend to be healthier and happier. High levels of self-efficacy promote creativity and risk taking. Being creative and taking risks, in turn, provides access to more opportunities. Bandura believed that the








key to developing successful individuals was to provide them with a sense of selfefficacy.

Four circumstances were identified as instrumental in increasing or decreasing selfefficacy. First, repeated successes are more likely to increase one's level of self-efficacy for that specific task and often increases an individual's confidence to master other areas of his/her life (Bandura, 1977). The opposite is also true. Failure decreases one's level of self-efficacy and lessens one's desire to attempt other challenges. Providing individuals with sure opportunities for success can help to build self-efficacy.

Second, levels of self-efficacy can be increased through vicarious experiences

(Bandura, 1977). Individuals who are in environments where others take risks and succeed without too much aversion are more likely to believe that they, too, can succeed. Individuals will decrease in self-efficacy and willingness to take chances if placed in an environment of failure and highly aversive consequences.

Third, self-efficacy can be influenced by verbal persuasion (Bandura, 1977).

Individuals can be convinced that they will succeed by verbal persuasion. However, the situation must be set up for absolute success or the individual is likely to end up with lower levels of self-efficacy. Verbal persuasion is not the most effective method for improving self-efficacy. The need for tight control over the situation decreases the likelihood of generalization to other tasks.

The fourth and final circumstance that can alter self-efficacy is emotional or physiological arousal (Bandura, 1977). Negative emotions, such as stress and fear, can lower an individual's self-efficacy. Negative emotions result in less risk taking. Learning









to cope with negative emotions, however, can actually increase self-efficacy. Learning coping skills allows one to feel a sense of control and success.

Bandura's self-efficacy addresses an individual's sense of control and value. Recognizing one's value is essential to self-determination. Bandura provides many strategies for increasing one's sense of value and, in turn, one's ability to be selfdetermined. The interaction between self-efficacy and success has assisted professionals in developing effective instructional techniques.

Cognitive evaluation. Cognitive evaluation deals with the relationship between behavior and intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Deci and Ryan (1994) believed that individuals are internally motivated to engage in activities for which there are no external rewards. These activities are innately interesting and motivating to the individual. Selfdetermination, under this theory, becomes not only a capacity but also a need. Intrinsic motivation, pleasure, and desire are more powerful than most extrinsic forms of motivation.

The highest level of self-determination can be reached by connecting the two types of motivation. In other words, when extrinsic motivation such as societal acceptance can be tied to an intrinsically motivated task, a person's level of selfdetermination is very high. According to Deci and Ryan (1994) extrinsic motivators can also have detrimental effects on intrinsic motivation. Enjoyment and pleasure can be removed from a task when the external motivator becomes the goal. This situation is often reported by professional athletes because money, recognition, and championships become








the goal of participation rather than the pleasure and enjoyment of the activity. If they aren't winning, they aren't having fun.

The conditions of the environment are important to self-determination. Selfdetermination is developed in environments that have the following characteristics (Deci, Connell, & Ryan, 1989; Deci & Ryan, 1985, 1994):

1. The environment encourages self-initiation and choice rather than controlling it.

2. The environment includes authority figures whose interpersonal style allows for information to be delivered without pressure or control and in a manner that provides choice and acknowledgment of feelings.

3. The environment provides positive feedback in an autonomously supportive manner.

4. The environment provides corrective feedback in a noncritical and supportive manner.

5. The environment provides a meaningful and personal rationale for learning.

6. The environment acknowledges the feelings of the individual in a meaningful way.

7. The environment encourages the teaching of material that is of interest and enjoyable to the individual.

8. The environment increases an individual's level of competence by providing opportunities for perceived or real success.








The environmental considerations listed above illustrate that self-determination is not simply about teaching someone skills. Self-determination is about learning skills and being able to use them within the existing environment. Models of Self-Determination

The foundational theories presented have led to the development of selfdetermination models. In this section, five models of self-determination will be briefly described. These models are (a) Wehmeyer's model, (b) Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman's model, (c) Abery's model, (d) Powers, Sowers, Turner, Nesbitt, Knowles, and Ellison's model, and (e) Field and Hoffman's model. The major components of each model will be presented and discussed.

Wehmeyer's model. Wehmeyer's model is an outcome-based model, in which selfdetermination is viewed as a set of attitudes and abilities that are learned throughout one's life and result in achieving one's goals and fulfillment of our adult role (Field, 1996). Wehmeyer (1996) identifies four essential characteristics of self-determination; (a) the individual acted autonomously, (b) the behaviors were self-regulated, (c) the person initiated and responded to the event in a "psychologically empowered" manner, and (d) the person acted in a self-realizing manner. All four of the characteristics interact and must be present to achieve self-determination (see Figure 1).

Wehmeyer (1996) further defines the four characteristics. Autonomous

functioning includes both functioning without excessive interference and recognizing the reality of interdependence (i.e., others will have some level of influence). Self-regulation encompasses the ability to examine one's environment and available strategies in order to








plan, act, and evaluate one's behavior. Psychological empowerment refers to functioning from the belief that one has control over circumstances and the right skills needed to reach the desired outcome. Finally, self-realization refers to the ability to assess accurately one's abilities and knowledge and to use one's full potential in any situation.

The four essential characteristics are further broken down into skill components. Included in these components are choice making, decision making, problem solving,


Figure 1. Essential Characteristics of Self-Determination (Wehmeyer, 1996). internal locus of control, self-awareness, self-knowledge, self-efficacy, outcome expectancy, and goal setting. Wehmeyer (1996) asserted that educational efforts should focus on these components. These skill components can be learned through explicit instruction and opportunity.








Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman's model. The second model stems directly from Mithaug's (1996) work with self-regulation. Individuals who are self-determined are seen as those who can self-regulate the choices provided to them in their environment. A large emphasis is placed on problem solving. A person's ability to problem-solve effectively and creatively is essential. According to Mithaug, problem solving, referred to as gains toward goal attainment, can be explained and predicted using four factors: a) past gain toward the goal, (b) expectations for producing additional gain, (c) choices to produce additional gain, and (d) responses to those choices. The influence of self-efficacy in these factors is evident. Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman (1994) list six major steps in their self-determination model:

1. The individual identifies and expresses his or her own needs, interests, and abilities.

2. The individual sets expectations and goals to meet his or her needs and interests.

3. The individual makes choices and plans to meet goals and expectations.

4. The individual takes actions to complete plans.

5. The individual evaluates results of actions.

6. The individual adjusts plans and actions until goal is achieved.

This model also incorporates the concepts of capacity and opportunity. Capacity refers to an individual's abilities and his/her use of those abilities; opportunity represents the number of chances the individual has to act in a self-determined manner. Both concepts can be fostered and supported and are necessary for optimal growth and self-








determination. Only when both are functioning optimally can the highest levels of selfdetermination be reached.

Abery's model. Abery and Stancliffe (1996) introduced the ecology of selfdetermination. Abery (1994) laid the foundation for this perspective by asserting that self-determination is a dynamic interaction between an individual and his or her environment. Abery, drawing from Brofenbrenner's (1977) work, presents four levels of the ecosystem: microsystem, mesosystem, exosystem, and macrosystem (see Figure 2). Viewing self-determination as an ecology is not meant to disregard the importance of the individual. The individual and his or her abilities are at the center of the model and provide the motivation and knowledge base. The belief is simply that the factors linked to selfdetermination are promoted and hindered by the environment.

The microsystem is the setting where self-determination is acquired and most

often practiced. This setting consists of family, school, and work environments. Face-toface interactions characterize this first level. At this level, promoting self-esteem and providing opportunities for personal choice and control are essential. Curricula have been developed to be used within the microsystem.

The mesosystem consists of the linkages connecting the settings within the microsystem. Interagency collaboration is located in the mesosystem. Consistency in program planning, responses to behaviors associated with self-determination, and opportunities for personal control must occur in order to enhance self-determination. Providing family support and improving communications across settings are examples of strategies used in the mesosystem.



































Figure 2. Abery's model


Effects on individuals can be direct or indirect at the exosystem level. School policies or decisions, including ones that do not allow for students to experience opportunities for choice and input, are focused on at this level. Programmatic restraints can hinder self-determination. One form of intervention at this level is person-centered planning. Adopting this format allows professionals to support and promote selfdetermination.

The final level, the macrosystem, expands to include cultural beliefs and values. The beliefs and values of society affect institutional policies and patterns. Previous








examples of actions resulting from changing societal beliefs and values are deinstitutionalization and the passing of laws to protect the rights of individuals with disabilities. These changes have afforded individuals with disabilities more opportunities than ever before.

Powers. Sowers, Turner, Nesbitt, Knowles. and Ellison's Model. Powers, Sowers, Turner, Nesbitt, Knowles, and Ellison (1996) developed a self-determination model called "TAKE CHARGE." Self-determination in this model is viewed as an attribute that is strengthened or weakened by both environmental factors and individual skills. Environmental conditions are categorized as opportunities and support. Individual conditions are labeled skills and information (see Figure 3). Powers, Sowers et al. list three key conditions for promoting self-determination: (a) opportunities for mastery experiences, with both accomplishments and management of obstacles to success being avenues for mastery experiences; (b) using knowledge (information) and skills to facilitate success; and (c) support from others. The developers of "TAKE CHARGE" were very concerned about the promotion of learned helplessness. Learned helplessness is when an individual has learned to depend on or use assistance without first attempting to solve the problem independently. It is believed that learned helplessness results from providing too much support and assistance. The authors of the "TAKE CHARGE" model carefully described support as methods of promoting a person's self-attributes and capabilities, preferably through a verbal method (Powers, Wilson, Matuszewski, Phillips, Rein, Schumaker, & Gensert, 1996).









OPPORTUNITIES INFORMATION
Decision Making Self-Awareness
Achievement Options
Management of Resources
Obstacles Ex ectations







SUPPORT SKILLS
Validation Achievement Encouragement Partnership
Challenge Coping
Partnership


Figure 3. Conditions for Self-Determination (Powers, Sowers et al., 1996).



In this model, self-determination is conceived of as a self-help skill. The individual must develop self-determination through experience and encouragement. Bandura's (1977) self-efficacy and internalization of success are strongly emphasized in this model.

Field and Hoffman's model. Field and Hoffman (1994) developed a model that takes into account individually controlled behaviors, environmental variables, affective factors and skill components (see Figure 4). Self-determination consists of five major components in this model: (a) know yourself, (b) value yourself, (c) plan, (d) act, and (e) experience outcomes and learn (see Figure 4). All of the components must be mastered to reach high levels of self-determination. The first two components are internal processes that provide the foundation for effective execution the remaining steps. Knowing and valuing oneself incorporate the power of self-efficacy into this model. Planning, acting,








and experiencing outcomes and learning apply and strengthen the first two steps. Each of the components have been analyzed and broken down into more specific skills. These skills are the focus of instruction. As the skills are being taught, students must be provided with opportunities to practice the process as a whole. The cyclical nature of this model makes continuous practice essential. Current Self-Determination Curricula

This section will provide information on current curricula designed to develop

self-determination. The Steps to Self-Determination, the ChoiceMaker Self-Determination Transition Curriculum, IPLAN, Life Centered Career Education, and Become Your Own Expert will be briefly reviewed. Most of the curricula focus on secondary students and, with slight modifications, are recommended for use in younger grades.

The Steps to Self-Determination curriculum. The Steps to Self-Determination

curriculum was developed by Field and Hoffman (1 996b). This 18-session curriculum is experiential, allowing the student to establish goals and work toward accomplishing those goals. Teachers are encouraged to participate to provide a proper role model. The curriculum was developed with ten essential instructional components: (a) co-learner role for teacher, (b) emphasizing modeling, (c) cooperative learning, (d) experiential learning,

(e) integrated or inclusive environments, (f) accessing support of family and friends, (g) emphasizing listening skills, (h) interdisciplinary teaching, (i) using appropriate humor, and (j) capitalizing on teachable moments. The program was field-tested in two Midwestern high schools. Both measures used were developed by the authors of the curriculum. Students who used the program demonstrated significant gains in self-









determination knowledge and on the checklist when compared to the control group (Field & Hoffman, 1996a).


I.___________________________________________


Value Yourself
" Accept and value * Recognize and <> yourself respect rights & responsibilities
" Admire strengths that * Take care of
come from uniqueness yourself


Plan
Set goals 9 Anticipate results iPlan actions to * Be creative meet goals * Visually rehearse




Act
* Take risks * Negate
* Communicate * Deal with conflict and criticism
* Access resources * Be persistent
and support




Expenence Outcomes & Learn a Compare outcome to expected outcome e Compare performance to expected performance
* Realize success
P Make adjustments


Environment


Figure 4. Model of Self-Determination (Field & Hoffman, 1994)


Know Yourself
" Dream * Know the options
Know your * Decide what strengths, is important weaknesses, needs, to you and preferences








Durlak et al. (1994) instructed high school students using the Steps to SelfDetermination curriculum. The study participants were eight high school students with LD. The students were instructed in groups of four. Instruction took place twice a week for 30 minutes. The results indicated that the students were able to learn selfdetermination skills. The researchers discovered, however, that learning the skills and using the skills appropriately were two different things. Some of the students reported being uncomfortable talking about their disability, and all but one received comments about needing to improve clarity and comprehensiveness. Two of the eight students failed to complete all of the self-advocacy actions.

The ChoiceMaker self-determination transition curriculum. The ChoiceMaker curriculum was developed by Martin and Marshall (1996). This curriculum directly ties self-determination to the IEP process and transition. ChoiceMaker consists of three sections: (a) choosing goals, (b) expressing goals, and (c) taking actions. Each section contains two to four teaching goals and objectives that relate directly to the six transitional domains (see Figure 5). This curriculum also recommends an experiential approach. The students should be preparing for and conducting IEP meetings while using the ChoiceMaker curriculum.

Martin and Marshall (1996) connected the ChoiceMaker curriculum with selfdetermination by identifying 37 self-determination concepts, grouping them into seven domain areas, and then placing them into the curriculum matrix. The lesson packages provide the materials needed to teach each lesson and can be infused into existing school course work. ChoiceMaker can be used with both middle and high school students.




















TRANSITION DOMAINS
EXPRESSING GOALS
post-high school education personal
community participation (recreation > student leading IEP meeting
employment and leisure) student reporting housing
high school


Figure 5. Connecting Transition and ChoiceMaker (Martin and Marshall, 1996). Despite being designed for special education students, this curriculum can be used with general education students if the IEP related activities are removed or adapted.

IPLAN. IPLAN is an intervention designed to increase student participation at IEP meetings. The strategy was developed by Van Reusen and Bos. It is part of the University of Kansas Strategies Intervention Model. IPLAN is an acronym for the five steps of the strategy, designed to be taught over a two week period for approximately 45 minutes a day:

I- Inventory your strengths, weaknesses you need to improve, goals and interest, and choices for learning

P - Provide your inventory information

L - Listen and respond


CHOOSING GOALS student interests student skills and limits students goals


TAKING ACTIONS student plan student action student evaluation student adjustments








A - Ask questions

N - Name your goals

The strategy was piloted at a junior high school (Van Reusen & Bos, 1990). The students who received instruction in the strategy averaged 109 contributions during their IEP meetings. Students who had not received instruction averaged only 31 contributions.

The Life Centered Career Education curriculum. The Life Centered Career

Education (LCCE) curriculum was not designed specifically to address self-determination, but it has been used for this purpose. The curriculum is a functional life skills curriculum. There are three domains used in this curriculum: (a) daily life skills, (b) occupational guidance and preparation, and (c) personal-social skills. LCCE was examined for its appropriateness for promoting self-determination. Four competency areas were found to match the self-determination components: (a) achieving self-awareness, (b) acquiring selfconfidence, (c) making adequate decisions, and (d) achieving independence. Along with these four competencies, 17 subcompetencies were located. This curriculum was revised and strengthened to be used as a self-determination program (Wehmeyer & Brolin, 1996).

The Become Your Own Expert curriculum. The Become Your Own Expert curriculum (Carpenter, 1995) was not designed as a self-determination curriculum directly. It was designed as a self-advocacy curriculum. Self-determination is seen as a characteristic that is needed of individuals who are effective self-advocates. The knowledge base and skills described in the previous models and curricula of selfdetermination are also included in this self-advocacy curriculum.








Prior to development of this curriculum, a program was conducted to determine what skills were needed for effective self-advocacy at the post-secondary level. The author developed activities to teach and promote effective self-advocacy based on the result of that yearlong program and relevant research articles. The curriculum was then piloted in a secondary school. A self-concept scale, an informal teacher-developed selfadvocacy scale, and videotaped interviews with the students were used to evaluate the effectiveness of the curriculum. Carpenter (1995) reported that student growth in selfadvocacy and self-esteem was significant. These results led to the conclusion that explicit teaching of self-advocacy skills is effective and necessary.

Because self-advocacy is the ultimate goal of this curriculum all the activities are connected to becoming a better self-advocate. This self-advocacy orientation makes this curriculum unique. Instead of the focus being the IEP process, which is essential to secondary students, the focus is on being an effective self-advocate, which is essential to all post-secondary students.

Each of these curricula is designed to develop self-determination or its

components in secondary students. The following section explains the importance of selfdetermination at the post-secondary level and its current status in post-secondary settings.

Self-Determination and Post-Secondary Education

Self-determination skills are mandated by law at the post-secondary level. Both ADA and Section 504 require students to self-identify in order to receive services from colleges and universities. Students must be able to self-advocate by explaining their








learning disabilities and what accommodations they feel are necessary. College students with LD must often work with professionals who have limited knowledge about learning disabilities. These professionals will rely on the student for information concerning learning disabilities (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Norton, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1994; Sanders & DuBois, 1996; Vogel et al., 1999). It has been shown that many college students with LD are not effective at communicating about their learning disabilities and accommodation needs (Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1994; 1996; Brinckerhoff, et al., 1992; Cullen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Vogel et al., 1998; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993). After interviewing 107 college students with LD, Vogel et al. (1993) reported that most students had limited self-awareness or knowledge about their learning disabilities. Frustration on the part of students with LD about not being able to understand their learning disabilities and communicate their needs to others leads to increased anxiety and lower self-esteem. Frustration on the part of the faculty and staff with students' inability to express their needs exacerbates the negative attitude about providing accommodations reported to exist among faculty members at post-secondary institutions (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Sanders & DuBois, 1995; Stagne & Milne, 1996; Scott, 1994; 1995).

The overwhelming consensus among professionals that college students with LD are in desperate need of self-determination skills has resulted in action. Unfortunately, that action is directed almost entirely toward secondary students with LD. The classes and curricula currently available are geared toward secondary students. This is a very positive development for secondary students, although the actual teaching of self-









determination at the secondary level is not wide spread. Only three states mentioned teaching self-determination skills on their transitional education plans (Patton, Cronin, & Jairrels, 1997). The current recommendation from researchers is to begin teaching selfdetermination skills at a younger age (Vogel, 1996; Weimer, Cappotelli, & Di Camillo, 1998). Although the research, curricula, and recommendations for a_ earlier initiation are all positive developments, the needs of post-secondary students with LD are still being neglected. Post-secondary students with LD have the greatest immediate need but are receiving the least assistance.

Using the currently available curricula on self-determination with college students with LD is not appropriate. The focus on the IEP process is inappropriate for postsecondary students. In addition, the skills needed to self-advocate with familiar, supportive teachers and individuals are totally different than those needed to selfadvocate with strangers who are often lacking in knowledge and unreceptive. Durlak et al. (1994) were able to teach some self-determination skills to secondary students but were not as successful at getting the students to self-advocate, even in the more supportive secondary setting.

Developing and implementing methods for teaching post-secondary students with LD both the necessary self-determination skills and how to be an effective self-advocate has been neglected by researchers. A majority of the barriers to success at the postsecondary level can be tied to poor self-determination skills. Professionals need to discover the best methods for teach self-determination skills at the post-secondary level.








Carpenter and the Department of Education in Minnesota (1995) did take a postsecondary needs approach. The Become Your Own Expert curriculum has a foundation in post-secondary needs. This curriculum focuses on self-advocating, and all skills are taught in reference to creating better self-advocates. The curriculum, however, was never taught to the post-secondary students who need it.

Although teaching self-determination at the secondary level has yielded positive results (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak et al., 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996; Van Reusen & Bos, 1990), the need for self-determination instruction at the post-secondary level is clear. The challenge remains; however, to develop a self-determination curriculum that is effective with post-secondary students with LD.

Research Implications

The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction in self-determination skills on college students with LD. The intervention in this study was a course on self-determination designed for the post-secondary student with LD. The concepts and objectives used in this course were a combination of the "Become Your Own Expert," "Steps to Self-Determination," and "ChoiceMaker" curricula. The largest contribution of activities came from the "Become Your Own Expert" curriculum. The goals of this intervention were to

1. Teach the meaning of learning disability.

2. Increase students' understanding of their personal learning disability.

3. Inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability.






41


4. Increase students' ability to effectively communicate about their learning disabilities.

5. Teach the students how to set both long-term and short-term goals.

6. Teach the students how to plan and evaluate their progress effectively.

7. Demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful adult.














CHAPTER 3
METHODS AND PROCEDURES


The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction in self-determination skills on college students with LD. Chapter 3 provides information on the participants and procedures used in this study. Following an explanation of the hypotheses of the study, this section provides a detailed explanation of the research methods. Specifically, the participants, design, instruments, procedures, and treatment of the data are described.

Description of Hypotheses

This study attempted to answer one main question: What effects will explicit instruction of self-determination skills have on college students with LD? The following null hypotheses were developed to answer the main question of interest.

HI: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group.

H2: There will be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group.

H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group.









H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group.

Methods

Participants

The participants in this study were 40 university students with diagnosed learning disabilities. The students in the study were all participating in a tutoring program for individuals with LD at the university. A total of 52 students participate in the tutoring program, but any student who attends tutoring sessions for less than one hour a week or whose attendance was irregular was eliminated from the list of possible study participants. The age range of the participants is 18-25 and all of the students are studentathletes at the university. As required by the University of Florida Institutional Review Board (UFIRB), all of the participants provided informed consent to participate. A copy of the informed consent is provided in Appendix C. Desin

In this study a prospective randomized pretest-posttest design with two groups was used (see Table 2). The experimental group consisted of those students randomly assigned to the self-determination-training course taught through explicit instruction. The control group consisted of the residual 20 students. The dependent variables were the post intervention self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills scores. The independent variables were explicit instruction of self-determination skills (self-awareness and self-advocacy) and pre intervention self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills scores.








Table 2

Experimental Design

Group Procedures

Experimental R 01 X 02 Control R 01 (no intervention) 02

R = Random Assignment, 0' = Pretest, X = Intervention, 02 = Posttest


Instruments

Four instruments were used to collect data related to students' self-determination:

(a) a self-determination scale, (b) an advocating checklist, (c) an anxiety inventory, and

(d) a study skills inventory. The self-determination scale was used to measure changes in self-determination after the intervention. Being able to communicate effectively is one of the greatest needs among post-secondary students with LD. The advocating checklist was used to measure changes in the students' abilities to communicate about their learning disabilities. Anxiety can affect one's ability to communicate effectively and students with LD are reported to have high levels of anxiety. The anxiety measure was taken immediately before the advocating interview was conducted. The anxiety inventory was used to measure changes in both state and trait anxiety after the intervention. Finally, the study skills inventory was used to measure any increase in study skills after the intervention. A measure of the students' study skills was taken in an effort to determine if explicit instruction in self-determination skills would result in better study skills among post-secondary students with LD.








The first instrument mentioned was the Students Self-determination Scale (Hoffman, Field, & Sawilowsky, 1995). This test was one of the six tests these researchers developed to measure self-determination. The test had a reliability of alpha .91. The test contains 92 yes-no items that make up an overall self-determination score and five self-determination subcategories (a) Knowing Yourself, (b) Valuing Yourself, (c) Act, (d) Plan, (e) Experience Outcomes and Learn.

The second instrument was an advocating checklist (see Appendix D) which was used to score the advocating interviews. The checklist contains 15 items. The items addressed communication skills (i.e. eye contact, voice tone, and speaking in complete sentences) and knowledge of one's learning disabilities (i.e. explains learning disability, indicates strengths and weaknesses, and requests accommodations). The number of points possible for each question varied with 0-1 being the smallest range and 0-3 being the largest range. The highest possible score was 36.

The third instrument was the State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI, Spielberger, 1977). The test is a self-report that has 20 state anxiety questions and 20 trait anxiety questions. State anxiety pertains to an individuals level of anxiety at the moment the measure is given while trait anxiety pertains to an individual's "normal" level of anxiety. Each question is answered on a 4 point Likert scale (1 being "not at all" and 4 being "very much so"). The alpha reliability for the state anxiety is .91 for college males and .93 for college females. The alpha reliability for the trait anxiety is .90 for college males and .91 for college females.









The fourth instrument was the Learning and Study Skills Inventory (LASSI). The LASSI contains 77 items that are answered on a Likert scale of 1-5. The test questions are sorted into 10 different sections: (a) Attitude, (b) Motivation, (c) Time Management, (d) Anxiety in School, (e) Concentration, (f) Information Processing, (g) Selecting the Main Ideas, (h) Study Aids, (i) Self Testing, and (j) Test Strategies. The validity and test-retest reliability for each section is provided in Table 3.


Table 3

LASSI validity and reliability scores


Section


Attitude Motivation Time Management Anxiety in School Concentration Information Processing Selecting the Main Ideas Study Aids Self Testing Test Strategies


Validity

.72 .81 .86 .81 .84 .83 .74 .68 .75 .83


Test-Retest Reliability

.75 .84 .85 .83 .85 .72 .78 .75 .78 .81









Procedures

Participants. To select participants for this study, all of the student-athletes with LD who were part of the tutoring program and met the attendance requirements were listed in alphabetical order. This list consisted of 40 eligible participants who were then numbered 1-40. A computer program randomly selected 20 numbers and the corresponding student names were placed in the experimental group. Due to athletic eligibility constraints and scheduling conflicts some students were unable to remain in the experimental group. The students who were unable to stay in the experimental group were immediately placed in the control group. The computer program then selected another set of numbers to replace the students who had athletic eligibility concerns. This process was continued until at least 15 students were in the experimental group. The remaining students were all placed in the control group. Two of the original students were unable to participate in the study at all because internships required them to be out of the area and two others chose not to participate. After the selection process was completed the experimental group contained 16 participants and the control group contained 20 participants. Demographic information on all of the participants is provided in Table 4. Additional information on race and sex distribution in each of the groups is provided in Figures 6 and 7.

The sex distribution between the two groups and in comparison with the whole group appears to be similar. The larger number of males overall is a reflection of the tradition of athletics, particularly at the college level. Males have be more aggressively









Table 4

Whole Group Demographics


Characteristic Average Median

Age 20.4 20.5 Grade Point Average 2.43 2.39

Credits 66 71.5


100% 90% 80% 70% 60% 50%. 40%* 30%* 20%* 10%. 0%.


Whole Group Class


Control


0 African American


03 Caucasian


Figure 6. Race Distribution


100%
90% 80% 70%60%. 50%
40%. 30%. 20%. 10%0%-


L

Whole Group

U Male


Figure 7. Sex Distribution


Class


Control


03 Female








encouraged to participate in athletics and have been given more opportunities. Male students who were struggling in school were probably more often directed toward athletics. Despite the increase in opportunities for women since the passage of Title IX (banning any discrimination against women, including in sports) the proportion of women participating at the college level has not yet equaled that of men (Lapchick, 1996). Among all of the participants, the racial percentages were almost even. The race distribution among the two groups, however, shows that more African Americans were in the control group. The rate of occurrence was not significant, however.

Statistical group comparisons were performed to determine if any significant

differences between the groups existed. The results of these statistical tests are provided in Table 5. The only initial significant difference between the two groups was Year in School. This was probably a result of students being excluded from the experimental class due to eligibility reasons. These reasons were often related to required courses and significant progress toward graduation. The results of t-tests done on the pretests to determine initial group equivalence on the various dependent measures are provided in chapter 4.

Assessments. The participants took the LASSI, and the Student Self-Determination Scale prior to the beginning of the intervention. The tests were administered individually. The tests were all tape-recorded and the students were given the option of using the taped format. All of the participants also participated in a five-question interview prior to beginning the intervention. Immediately before the interview and immediately after being









instructed that they would be interviewed about their learning disabilities, the participants were given the STAI to complete. The interviews were all videotaped.


Table 5

Significant Differences in Group Demographics

Characteristic Class Age 20.3 GPA 2.36 Credits 54.13


Control 20.6 2.5 75.65


Significance

.59 .34 .10


Race .30
AA 6 11 C 10 9

Sex .68 F 5 5 M 11 15

Year in School .05* Freshman 8 2 Junior 4 11 Senior 4 7

Major .16 Health & Human Performance 5 11 Liberal Arts & Sciences 11 9
*Significant at .05 level.


The interview protocol consists of the following questions: (a) "please tell me

about yourself and your learning disability;" (b) "what accommodations do you feel you

will need;" (c) "what external supports do you use;" (d) "do you have anything else you

would like to add;" (e) "is there any information I can give you at this time?" The same








person, who was unknown to all of the participants, conducted all the interviews. The interviews were graded by two independent graders to evaluate self-advocacy skills. The graders were trained on mock interviews until 90% agreement was reached. Interrater agreement was calculated for 30% of the interviews. The interrater agreement was 80%. Interrater agreement was determined by calculating the number of agreements divided by the number of agreements plus the number of disagreements and multiplying by 100 [i.e., (A / (A+D) x 100].

Intervention. The intervention course started at the beginning of the spring

semester and after completion of the pretesting. The participants in the experimental group were taught self-awareness and self-advocacy skills during a semester-long class. The course was offered pass/fail to limit the effects earning a grade might have had on student behavior. The course met three times a week for 50 minutes for the first three weeks and then twice a week for 50 minutes for the remainder of the semester. After the first three weeks, the students were required to meet with the instructor twice during the semester on an individual basis to discuss the specific manifestation of their learning disabilities.

The objectives of the intervention were to 1. teach the meaning of learning disability;

2. increase students' understanding of their personal learning disability;

3. inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability;

4. increase students' ability to effectively communicate about their learning disabilities;








5. teach the students how to set both long-term and short-term goals;

6. teach the students how to plan and evaluate their progress effectively;

7. demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful adult.

The class included instruction on understanding learning disabilities, legal rights, determining appropriate accommodations, portfolio development, the benefits of counseling, self-advocacy role-playing, and learning strategies. The students were expected to participate in class and keep a reflective journal of each day's activities. The journals were collected and examined for patterns that might further clarify or support the quantitative results. The instructor also kept a brief daily diary to assist in clarifying the intervention. No formal tests were given during the course but occasional knowledge checks occurred. A majority of the classroom activities were done in cooperative learning groups. See the syllabus (Appendix A) and instructor's diary (Appendix B) for more specific information on the intervention.

At the end of the semester, posttesting was conducted using the same procedures used during pretesting. In an effort to limit possible effects on participant answers the students' pass/fail grades were turned in prior to posttesting. Post-intervention interviews were done at this time with a different unknown person from the initial advocacy interviews. As in the case of the initial interviews, the interviewer was the same person for all participants.








Treatment of Data

The data from the four measures (i.e., self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills) were examined and compared. Univariate procedures were performed on the pretests to determine a symmetrical distribution of the data. T-tests were also conducted on the pretests to determine if any initial group differences existed. A series of analyses of covariance (ANCOVA) were used to evaluate the original four hypothesis listed below:

H1: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group.

H2: There will be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group.

H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group.

H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. The results of these ANCOVAs are reported in chapter 4 along with the results from the follow-up statistical tests. Supportive evidence from the student journals is also reported in Chapter 4.

Summary

Chapter 3 described the methods and procedures used in this study. The

participants were college students with LD who were participating in a tutoring program for students with LD. The participants were also all student-athletes. The intervention was a course on self-determination. The course lasted one semester and the college





54


student-athletes with LD were randomly placed in the course (experimental class). The participants were administered pre- and posttest measures of self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills. The data were analyzed to determine if any significant differences existed between the control and experimental groups.














CHAPTER 4
RESULTS

Introduction

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on post-secondary students with learning disabilities. Four hypotheses about the effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on postsecondary students with learning disabilities were developed and tested:

HI: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group.

H2: There will be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group.

H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group.

H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group.

The participants in this study were 36 college student-athletes with learning disabilities. The participants were randomly assigned to the experimental and control groups. The participants in the experimental group were enrolled in and attended a class on self-determination and self-advocacy for 32 sessions. The control group was not given any instruction on self-determination and self-advocacy. Prior to instruction, all of the








participants were pretested on self-determination, anxiety, advocating, and study skills. All of the participants were again tested in these four areas after the intervention was complete. Two students, however, dropped out of the study prior to the posttesting. One student was in the experimental group and one student was in the control group. This lowered the total number of participants to 34. The experimental group had 15 participants and the control group had 19 participants. Various statistical tests were performed to determine the distribution of scores, equivalence of the groups, and the effectiveness of the intervention. Specifically, an ANCOVA was conducted on each of the posttest scores of the two groups. More detailed information on the tests conducted and the results of these tests along with various follow-up tests are provided within this chapter. A thorough discussion of the conclusions and implications that can be drawn from these results is provided in Chapter 5.

Statistical Analysis

Initial Group Equivalence and Bias

Equivalence of control and experimental groups was tested using t-tests for the

continuous measures of age and grade point average and chi-square tests for the categorical measures of gender, race, and year-in-school (see Table 5 for a summary). Groups were found equivalent on all but the "year-in-school" measure on which the control group had significantly more seniors than the experimental group.

The relationships among demographic variables and the baseline measures of selfdetermination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills were examined. In Table 6, the relationship of the demographic variables with each of the self-determination pretest








scores is provided. The self-determination scores included the overall self-determination score, along with the subtests: Knowing Yourself, Valuing Yourself, Plan, Act, and Experience Outcomes and Learn. In Table 7, the relationships of the demographic variables to the pretest Advocating Interview scores are presented. The relationship between the demographic variables and the two pretest anxiety measures, State Anxiety and Trait Anxiety, are provided in Table 8. Finally, Table 9 provides information on the relationship between the demographic variables and each of the pretest study skills scores: Attitude, Motivation, Time Management, Anxiety with School, Concentration, Information Processing, Selecting Main Ideas, Study Aids, Self Testing, and Test Strategies.

The continuous demographic data and baseline measures were analyzed by

computation of Spearman correlations and tests to ascertain if correlation coefficients differed from zero. For the categorical demographic data, relationships with baseline measures were determined using ANOVA models. Multiple comparisons were analyzed using the Ryan-Einot-Gabriel-Welch Multiple Range Test. The continuous baseline measures were checked for normality using normal probability plots. No departures from normality were detected indicating the appropriateness of the ANOVA procedures.

Several significant relationships were detected. The seniors tended to exhibit

higher scores on selecting main ideas (a mean of 16.7 for seniors and 12.7 for freshmen; significantly different at the p<.05 level). The seniors and juniors also performed significantly (p<.05) better on the self-determination subset action (21.4 for seniors, 20.07 for juniors, and 17.10 for freshmen). The seniors scored lower (better) on the state









Table 6

Relationship Between Self-Determination and Demographics


Pretest Age Year-in-school GPA
Corr. (r) p-value Mean p-value Corr.(r) p-value Overall .30 .08 F-68.80 NS .28 .09 Self-Determination J-75.27 S-78.18
Knowing Yourself .25 .14 F-12.60 NS .11 .54 J-14.07
S-14.27
Valuing Yourself .25 .14 F-12.70 NS .22 .21 J-13.40
S-14.00
Planning .22 .20 F- 13.80 NS -.09 .61 J-14.55
S-15.00
Act .34 .04* F-17.10 F-JS .30 .08 J-20.07 .05*
S-21.46
Experience Outcomes .18 .30 F- 12.60 NS .19 .28 and Learn J- 12.73 S-13.91

Pretest Sex Race
Mean p-value Mean p-value Overall Self-Determination F-74.40 .68 AA-74.65 .89 M-73.96 C-74.11 Knowing Yourself F-13.80 .87 AA-13.35 .37 M-13.69 C-14.50 Valuing Yourself F-13.30 .87 AA-13.41 .95 M-13.42 C-13.37 Planning F-14.90 .60 AA-14.29 .67 M-14.38 C-14.74 Act F-19.70 .97 AA-20.18 .41 M-19.65 C-19.21 Experience Outcomes and Learn F- 13.70 .29 AA- 13.41 .49 M-13.81 C-12.74
*significant at .05 level









Table 7

Relationship Between Advocating and Demographics

Pretest Age Year-in-school GPA
Corr.(r) p-value Mean p-value Corr.(r) p-value Advocating Interview .23 .18 F- 11.00 NS -.06 .73 J-13.23
S-13.41


Pretest Sex Race
Mean p-value Mean p-value Advocating Interview F-12.65 .99 AA-12.35 .64 M-12.67 C-12.95


and trait anxiety measures. The state anxiety means were 43 for freshmen, 36.13 for juniors, and 26.36 for seniors; the freshman and juniors were significantly (p<.05) different from the seniors. The trait anxiety means were 45.10 for freshmen, 37.27 for juniors, and 33.73 for seniors; the freshman were significantly (p<.05) different from the juniors and seniors. On the state anxiety and on the trait anxiety measure the freshmen were significantly (p<.05) different from the juniors and seniors. The only significant demographic difference between groups was year-in-school (the control group had significantly more juniors and seniors than the experimental group) but since the upperclassmen scored more favorably, the nature of this potential bias favored the control group. Hence, any differences found between groups should be attributed to the explicit instruction intervention and not the year-in-school factor.









Table 8
Relationship Between Anxiety and Demographics


Pretest Age Year-in-school GPA
Corr.(r) p-value Mean p-value Corr.(r) p-value State Anxiety -.47 .004* F-43.00 FJ-S .29 .08 J-36.13 .05*
S-26.36
Trait Anxiety -.46 .005* F-45.10 F-JS .00 .98 J-37.27 .05*
S-33.73

Pretest Sex Race
Mean p-value Mean p-value State Anxiety F-37.20 .52 AA-34.94 .95 M-34.23 C-35.16 Trait Anxiety F-43.30 .05* AA-38.29 .97 M-36.46 C-38.42
*significant at .05 level


No significant correlation was found between GPA and any of the measures.

Significant positive correlations were found between age and five measures: attitude

(r=.35 at p<.03), anxiety about school (r=.35 at p<.03), concentration (r=.42 at p<.01),

selecting main ideas (r=.49 at p<.002), of self-determination subset action (r=.34 at

p<.04). Negative correlations were found on both the state and trait anxiety (r= -.47 at

p<.004 and r= -.46 at p<.005, respectively). Two measures, attitude and trait anxiety,

demonstrated a significant difference between sexes. Females had higher attitude scores

than males (30.50 vs. 24.58 at p<.01) and higher trait anxiety scores (43.30 vs. 36.46 at

p<.05). Selecting main ideas was the only area to indicate a significant difference between

races. African Americans scored significantly higher than Caucasians (16.65 vs. 13.00 at

p<.002).









Table 9

Relationship Between Study Skills and Demographics


Pretest Age Year-in-school GPA
Corr (r) p-value Mean p-value Corr (r) p-value Attitude .35 .03* F-24.00 NS .10 .58 J-26.00 S-28.55 Motivation .02 .89 F-24.00 NS .13 .46 J-26.00 S-28.55 Time Management .05 .77 F-20.30 NS .04 .80 J-21.07 S-20.64 Anxiety with School .35 ..03* F-22.10 NS .25 .14 J-25.07 S-28.18
Concentration .42 .01* F- 18.4 NS .08 .63 J-20.67 S-23.46 Information Processing .06 .73 F-21.90 NS -.08 .63 J-25.40 S-22.91 Selecting the Main Idea .49 .002* F-12.70 F-S .15 .40 J-14.60 .05* S-16.73 Study Aids -.01 .95 F-21.90 NS .07* .67 J-22.80 S-21.27 Self Testing .23 .18 F-17.50 NS -.04 .81 J-19.82 S-20.73 Test Strategies .25 .15 F-23.30 NS .24 .15 J-25.00 S-26.64

*significant at .05 level









Table 9--continued


Pretest Sex Race
Mean p-value Mean p-value Attitude F-30.50 .01* AA-27.41 .31 M-24.58 C-25.16 Motivation F-27.70 .10 AA-25.64 .48 M-23.65 W-24.00 Time Management F-20.60 .94 AA-21.47 .44 M-20.77 C-20.05 Anxiety with School F-22.30 .09 AA-26.47 .27 M-26.31 C-24.05 Concentration F- 17.70 .10 AA-23.18 .06 M-22.12 C-18.84 Information Processing F-23.70 .98 AA-23.53 .90 M-23.65 C-23.79 Selecting the Main Idea F-15.30 .55 AA-16.65 .002* M-14.50 C-13.00

Study Aids F-24.60 .13 AA-21.88 .86 M-21.12 C-22.26 Self Testing F-21.70 .23 AA-20.06 .66 M-18.73 C-19.11 Testing Strategies F-24.40 .72 AA-26.00 .39 M-25.27 C-24.16
*significant at .05 level








Post Intervention Analysis

To determine the effectiveness of the explicit instruction intervention, a series of ANCOVA procedures were performed. In each ANCOVA, the end of the semester measure was regressed on the factors of group and baseline measure. This section provides an explanation of the results from the tests of hypotheses related to each of the four constraints.

Self-determination. Hypothesis 1 stated that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention self-determination scores between the control group and the experimental group. The Self-Determination Student Scale was used to assess the participant's level of self-determination. This measure provides an overall selfdetermination score and five subtest scores: Knowing Yourself, Valuing Yourself, Planning, Act, and Experience Outcomes and Learn. The results of the ANCOVA performed on the self-determination measures indicate no significant difference between the groups for any of the self-determination measures (p< .05). Table 10 provides the mean differences for each group. From these results, it can be concluded that Hypothesis

1 cannot be rejected.

Advocating. Hypothesis 2 states that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group. The results from the ANCOVA performed on the advocating scores demonstrated a significant difference between the experimental group and the control group (p<.01). Table 11 provides the mean differences for each of the groups. The existence of a significant difference between the two groups means that Hypothesis 2 can be rejected.









The advocating interview scores were analyzed further to determine the areas of greatest improvement. The results of these analyses are discussed in the next section of this chapter.


Table 10

Self-Determination ANCOVA Results


Pretest

Overall Self-determination Knowing Yourself Valuing Yourself Planning Act
Experience Outcomes and Learn


Difference Scores
Class Mean. Control Mean
-3.73 -3.26
.53 -.68
-1.00 -. 11
-.73 -.53
-1.47 -1.16
-1.07 -.84


Table 11

Advocating ANCOVA Results


Pretest

Advocating Interview
*Significant at .05 level


Difference Scores
Class Mean. Control Mean
3.23 -.42


Anxiety. Hypothesis 3 states that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group. No significant difference was found between the anxiety measures, state or trait, of the two groups (p< .05). Table 12 provides the mean differences for each of the groups. These results indicate that Hypothesis 3 cannot be rejected.


ANCOVA
P-Value .70 .25 .11 .46 .58 .63


ANCOVA
P-Value .01*









Table 12

Anxiety ANCOVA Results

Pretest Difference Scores ANCOVA Class Mean. Control Mean P-Value State Anxiety -2.93 2.47 .31 Trait Anxiety .47 -.37 .49


Study Skills. Hypothesis 4 states that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. No significant difference was found between the two groups on any of the study skills measures (p < .05). Table 13 provides the mean differences for each of the groups. Therefore, Hypothesis 4 cannot be rejected. Further Analysis

Self-determination. Interestingly, both the experimental and control groups had a self-determination mean pretest score well above the reported norm mean score. The mean score reported for this measure was 31. The experimental and control groups' mean pretest scores were 71.75 and 76.45, respectively. The subtest scores were also higher than the reported norm mean scores. In order to better understand the self-determination data, an item analysis was completed for all 92 items. Due to the categorical nature of the data, the Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel test was used. Each question has four possibilities or categories. The participant could have answered incorrectly on the pretest and incorrectly on the posttest (I-I), incorrectly on the pretest and correctly on the posttest (I-C), correctly on the pretest and incorrectly on the posttest (C-I), or correctly on the pretest









and correctly on the posttest (C-C). The percentage of the students in each group who fell into each category was analyzed to determine whether the groups differed significantly on each question and to see if there was a pattern among the participants in the way they answered the questions. Table 13

Study Skills ANCOVA Results


Pretest


Attitude Motivation Time Management Anxiety with School Concentration Information Processing Selecting the Main Idea Study Aids Self Testing Testing Strategies


Difference Scores
Class Mean Control Mean
1.27 2.00 3.07 1.00 2.07 -2.21 -1.80 .89 2.87 -.16 3.20 1.37 .73 .53 2.27 1.26 2.07 1.42 -.33 0.00


The groups did not differ significantly in how they answered most of the

questions and only four out of the 92 were significant. In a few cases, the lack of different answers made the test of significance impossible. These four questions and all of the questions scoring above 75% or below 60% in the correct-correct category were further examined. These additional analyses were conducted to determine if any explanations could be formulated about why the self-determination scores were so high for these participants.


ANCOVA
P-Value .49 .91 .09 .13 .65 .82 .64 .99 .53 .40









The item analysis did provide some interesting information. The groups only

differed significantly on four of the 92 questions: Question # 41, before I do something, I think about what might happen; Question # 62, 1 could not describe my strengths and weaknesses in school. Question # 69, I give in when I have differences with others.; and Question # 71, I tell my friends what I want to do when we go out. In questions 41 and 71, more of the control group's students answered correctly on the pretest and correctly on the posttest than the experimental group's students. On those same questions more than half of the experimental group's students who answered incorrectly on the pretest answered correctly on the posttest. On questions 62 and 69, both of the groups had almost equal rates of answering correctly on the pretest and posttest. The students in the control group also had a higher rate of going from correct answers on the pretest to incorrect answers on the posttest for both of those questions. The students in the experimental group had a higher rate of answering incorrectly on the pretest and incorrectly on the posttest for question 69; however, on question 62 they went from answering incorrectly on the pretest to answering correctly on the posttest.

Another interesting pattern was that over 50% of the students answered 69 out of 92 questions in a correct-correct pattern. This reflects in their above-average selfdetermination scores. Many of the questions on this study are not related directly to school and thus the participants in this study, who were all student-athletes, could associate them with other parts of their lives. The 40-point difference in initial mean scores between this group and the norms given indicate that student-athletes with learning disabilities maybe significantly different from other students with learning disabilities.








This concept is explored further in the next chapter. See Appendix E for the complete item analysis.

Despite the lack of statistical significance, two subtests of the self-determination score presented patterns that warranted closer examination. The mean difference scores of the Knowing Yourself and the Valuing Yourself subtests were graphed (see Figure 8). As Figure 8 depicts, the experimental group's (class) score increased in the Knowing Yourself area while the control group's score went down in this area. Conversely, the experimental group's Valuing Yourself score dropped more than the control's. The journals and offered more evidence to support the increase in the Knowing Yourself trend. In the journals, three fourths of the students reported learning more about themselves and their learning disability. The lowering of self-esteem was more surprising, because the students were openly participating and sharing experiences about having a learning disability and how others have acted towards them. How the students felt in this classroom full of individuals with learning disabilities might be different than how they feel about dealing with others who don't have a learning disability. Further possible implications and meanings of these trends will be addressed in Chapter 5.

Advocating. In order to determine what areas of the advocating interview

improved the most, an item analysis was conducted on the advocating interview data. A Wilcoxon Rank Sum test was performed to analyze these data. Each of the areas on the advocating interview score sheet was included in this test. Table 14 provides the mean difference scores for both groups and the level of significance for each scoring area. There was a significant difference between the groups in the areas of voice tone, posture, and










0.8 0.6


0.4

P. 0.2
0
0 1

00
tD 0.2S -0.4

-0.6
-0.8

-1

- 1.2
Knowing Yourself Valuing Yourself U Control [ Class Figure 8. Knowing and Valuing Yourself Trends



explaining one's learning disability (p< .04, .05, and .03, respectively). Although only three areas reach significance, the experimental group increased in 10 out of the 15 areas.

Anxiety. The state anxiety change scores for each of the participants were graphed to provide more information (see Figure 9). The graph provides visual evidence that the majority of the participants in the experimental group's state anxiety measures did decrease. Interestingly, the two participants in the experimental group with the highest increase in anxiety were seniors, who were less than a week from graduation and who had more absences than the others in that group. The participants in the control group had state anxiety scores that varied considerably. The graph indicates that state anxiety may









have been affected by the intervention but this was not a statistically significant result at

the .05 level of significance. These results are discussed further in Chapter 5.


Table 14

Advocating Item Analysis

Item Name Difference Scores Wilcoxon Class Mean Control Mean p-value Eye Contact .13 .18 .93 Volume .57 .18 .12 Voice Tone .53 .16 .04* Posture .40 .00 .05* Introduces Oneself .17 -.45 .11 Explains Learning Disability .73 .00 .03* Indicates Strengths -.08 -.07 .45 Indicates Weakness .33 -.05 .12 Requests Accommodations .27 -.24 .14 Justifies Accommodations .23 -.03 .39 External Supports -.37 -.18 .43 Asks About Services -.03 .00 .29 Requests Contact Person .00 .00 1.00 Appropriate Closing .10 .03 .83 Speaks in Complete Sentences .23 .11 .30
*Significant at .05 level


Change in Student Scores


U Control
Figure 9. Changes in Anxiety Scores


13 Class









Study skills. Although no statistically significant differences were found between the two groups in any of the 10 study skills areas, two significant trends were discovered in the areas of Time Management and Anxiety with School. These trends are displayed in Figure 10. The class increased in time management skills while the control group decreased (p < .09). The students in the class increased in their understanding of how important it is to plan their time because having a learning disability often results in needing more time to accomplish a task. The class did, however, decrease in its anxiety score. Unlike the previous anxiety measure a decrease in score in this test means and increase in anxiety. The difference here could stem from the fact that the questions on this anxiety measure focus on negative self-talk and self-awareness. Some sample items are " I am very tense when I study" and "Worrying about doing poorly interferes with my concentration on tests." The anxiety score in this measure seems more in line with the Knowing Yourself and Valuing Yourself trends discussed earlier. The students in the class knew more about themselves, even negative things, and that didn't translate into all positive feelings. The importance of these findings will be discussed further in Chapter 5. Between-Test Correlations

The relationship between some of the areas being measured warranted

investigation. The Spearman Correlation tests were run to see if any correlations existed between state anxiety scores, trait anxiety scores, advocating scores, and knowing yourself scores. These correlations were run on pretest scores, posttest scores, within groups, and on the whole group of participants.











2.5

2

1.5
1

0
u 0.5


-0.5

-1

-1.5- J
-2 i
-2.5
Time Management Anxiety with School a Control [ Class Figure 10. Study Skills Trends


Whole group pretest correlations. On the pretests, a significant positive

correlation was found (r =.49, p<.002) between the advocating score and the knowing yourself score. A significant positive correlation (r =.71, p<.0001) was also reported between the trait and state anxiety measures. Significant negative correlations were found between advocating and both trait (r = -.35, p< .04) and state (r = -.39, p<.02, respectively) anxiety measures. A negative correlation was also found to exist between Knowing Yourself and both trait (r = -.58, p<.0002) and state (r = -.42, p<.01) anxiety measures.

Whole group posttest correlations. Different correlations were found at

posttesting. Advocating no longer correlated significantly with any of the other measures.









However, state anxiety and advocating had a nearly significant trend (r = -.30, p<.08). Trait and state anxiety still had a significant positive correlation (r = .65, p<.0001) with each other. The significant negative correlation between state anxiety and Knowing Yourself (r = - .39, p<.02 ) still existed.

Experimental group pretest correlations. The experimental group had three strong correlations. There was a significant positive correlation (r = .62, p<.O1) between advocating and knowing yourself. There was also a significant positive correlation (r = .69, p<.003) between state and trait anxiety scores. The final correlation found within the experimental group pretest scores was a negative correlation (r =-.48, p.>06) between trait anxiety and knowing yourself.

Control group pretest correlations. The control group's pretest scores revealed some new significant correlations. The significant positive correlation (r = .83, p<.0001) between state and trait anxiety still existed. No other significant positive correlations were found with in this group. Significant negative correlations were found, however, between advocating and trait anxiety (r = -.47, p<.04) and between knowing yourself and both trait (r = -.61, p<.004) and state (r = -.55, p<.01) anxiety.

Experimental group posttest correlations. Only one significant correlation was found in within the experimental group's posttest. There was a positive correlation (r = .54, p<.04) between trait and state anxiety scores at a level.

Control group posttest correlations. A significant positive correlation (r = .68,

p<.001) was discovered between the state and trait anxiety scores. Knowing Yourself was found to have a significant negative correlation with both trait (r = -.57, p<.O1) and state(r









= -.53, p<.02) anxiety. No other significant correlations were found. The significant correlation found between state and trait anxiety on each of the tests was as expected. State and trait anxiety are correlated and, had these tests not demonstrated that relationship, the results would be questioned. A person's overall anxiety disposition affects and helps predict his/her level of anxiety in specific situations. Journal Themes

From a review of the students' journals, a few constant themes could be found. Approximately, three quarters of the students reported that they learned about themselves and how to advocate. The brainstorming accommodations activity was beneficial and enjoyed by 13 of the 15 students. A majority of the students reported being able to relate to classmates' comments and experiences, along with those of the people in the videotapes watched in class. This seemed to make them feel more comfortable with their disabilities. Almost all of the students reported that they liked working in groups and that it helped them pay more attention. Learning about the laws made the students feel empowered, according to half of the students. The students found both the modality unit and the computer learning styles inventory useful, but they felt that the computer learning style inventory needed to be more specific. Finally, the students thought that they needed to spend more time role-playing with an instructor rather than with peers. Only one student was unable to find anything useful about the course. In general all of the journals reflected the positive comments the students had shared in class.









Summary

Chapter 4 provided the results of the statistical analyses performed on the preand posttest data from the self-determination intervention. Only Hypothesis 2 (there will be no significant difference in the advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group) could be rejected based on the results of the ANCOVAs performed. Further analysis of some tests was done to determine if patterns or trends among the data collected could be found. Trends in the scores in the self-determination subtests of Knowing Yourself and Valuing Yourself were presented in this chapter and are discussed further in Chapter 5, along with the supporting data from the study skills measures. An item analysis on the self-determination measure and the advocating measure were also performed and reported in this chapter. The state anxiety scores were presented in graph form, so trends could be examined. The data were also examined to determine if correlations existed between advocating, trait anxiety, state anxiety, and knowing yourself scores. The relevance of all of these findings for post-secondary students with learning disabilities, professionals in the field, and future research is presented in Chapter 5.














CHAPTER 5
DISCUSSION

Introduction

The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on post-secondary students with learning disabilities. Chapter 5 provides a brief overview of the study, including a summary of the literature review and the procedures used. This overview is followed by an in-depth discussion, which includes a brief review of the results for each hypothesis, implications for the profession, and directions of future research.

Overview of Study

Review of the Literature

Research has demonstrated that, despite efforts to develop self-determination in students with LD at the secondary level, post-secondary students with LD typically do not demonstrate self-determined behavior (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1996; Brinckerhoffet al., 1992; Cullen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997). In particular, many college students with LD do not have effective skills for communicating about their learning disabilities and accommodation needs (Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoff et al.; Cullen et al.; Day & Edwards, 1996; Greenbaum et al.; Kroeger & Aune; Norton; Vogel et al., 1998; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993).








After interviewing 107 college students with LD, Vogel et al. (1993) reported that most students had limited self-awareness or knowledge about their learning disabilities. Because the number of students with LD choosing to attend post-secondary institutions is rapidly growing (Blackorby & Wagnor, 1996), the need to increase self-determination among post-secondary students with LD is crucial.

The laws that govern services provided at the post-secondary level require postsecondary students with LD to act in a self-determined manner, yet they are often surrounded by individuals who know little or nothing about learning disabilities. This requires that students with LD must be equipped to educate others about learning disabilities. Students who lack self-determination are unprepared to meet these demands and are often left with high levels of anxiety, little self-confidence, and low self-esteem. Professionals have had some success in teaching self-determination skills to secondary students (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak, 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996a, Van Reusen & Bos, 1990). Determining the best method for building on the success of self-determination instruction with secondary students and tailoring it to the needs of students with LD at the post-secondary level is the focus of this dissertation. Methods

This study was designed to test the effects of a one-semester course on the selfdetermination, self-advocacy, anxiety, and study skills on post-secondary students with LD To test these effects a pretest-posttest design was employed. Two groups, experimental and control, were used in the study.









Study participants. The participants in this study were thirty-six college studentathletes with learning disabilities. The participants were randomly assigned to the experimental and control groups. The experimental group had 16 students, but one student withdrew before the end of the study. The control group had 20 students, but one student from this group also chose not to continue in the study.

Study procedures. The participants individually took a pretest on selfdetermination and study skills. An anxiety pretest was taken immediately prior to the advocating interview. The advocating interviews were then scored by two independent raters. After the pretesting was completed, the experimental group participated in a semester-long course on self-determination. Following the intervention, the participants took the self-determination and study skills tests again. They also took the anxiety measures again immediately before participating in the advocating interview. Comparisons of the groups were conducted using a series of ANCOVAs with pretests as the covariates. Additional tests were performed (i.e., correlation and item analysis) in an effort to understand more fully the effects of the intervention.

Discussion of Results

Review of Results

The results of this study have two main limitations. The first limitation is the size of the groups. The groups were sufficient but small. The number of members in each group makes the average scores susceptible to extreme scores. To strengthen the findings of this study, replication of this study is recommended.








The second limitation is the fact that all of the participants in this study were student-athletes. The uniqueness of the student-athlete with a learning disability was a factor in this study. This is most evident in the self-determination score. The studentathlete with a learning disability is unique for many reasons (Lane et al., in press). Student-athletes with learning disabilities have had successful experiences in the athletic arena that have created a frame of reference that is significantly different than other students with learning disabilities. These two limitations must be considered when interpreting the results, implications, and future research directions derived from this study.

This study had four main hypotheses. In this section, each hypothesis is reviewed and the results of the analyses are discussed and interpreted.

Hi: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group.

H2: There will be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group.

H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group.

H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. The ANCOVA results for hypothesis 2 (advocating) demonstrated a significant difference between the experimental and the control groups. Hypothesis 2 can, therefore, be rejected. The analysis of the other three hypotheses did not yield significant differences









and HI, H3, and H4 cannot be rejected. However, further analysis did reveal relevant information in each of the domains.

Self-determination. A lack of significant difference between the groups on the selfdetermination measure may be related to the high self-determination scores among the participants. The average scores for both groups were 40 points above the norm average. The room for growth, therefore, was limited. The Self-Determination Scale for Students may not be appropriate for this population. Population in this instance refers to postsecondary student-athletes with learning disabilities not post-secondary students with learning disabilities in general. In both groups, 75% of the participants scored correctly on the same questions on the pretest and posttest for 30 of the questions. The item analysis revealed that many of these questions were not directly related to school. This allowed participants to apply the question to any area of their life. Because all of the participants were highly successful, self-determined athletes, it is likely that they related the questions to the athletic domain rather than the academic domain. For example, question seven states "There are no interesting possibilities in my future", and question 51 states "I imagine myself being successful." For any college student-athlete, these questions may be related to athletics and answered in a positive manner. At first glance, question 43 ("I know what grades I am working toward in my classes") might appear more appropriate, but all student-athletes know what grades are required to stay eligible for athletic competition. The majority of participants in this study, as reported by their academic counselors and tutors, have not displayed self-determined behavior relating to academic domain. For this reason the high self-determination scores may be misleading.









Trends (see Figure 8) did reveal that the experimental group increased in the

Knowing Yourself subset of self-determination while the control group decreased slightly. Increases in the Knowing Yourself area of self-determination after the intervention of explicitly teaching of self-determination skills supports previous results from the literature (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak, 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996a; Van Reusen & Bos, 1990) on teaching secondary students to be self-determined. Students' knowledge about their learning disabilities can be increased through explicit instruction. The students' journals reported that the students were learning more about themselves and their learning disabilities. Twelve of the 15 journals contained at least one statement reflecting thoughts such as "I am learning a lot about myself' and "I am learning what a learning disability is." The increase in Time Management scores and the decrease in Anxiety with School scores also support the belief that explicit instruction in self-determination skills can increase knowledge about one's learning disability. In the case of the decrease in the Anxiety with School score, it is demonstrated that learning more about oneself does not always immediately lead to positive thoughts.

The other trend noted in the results that helps to illustrate this point is the decline in the Valuing Yourself score among the experimental group. No journal comments reflected this decline in self-value. This finding does not support previous findings that self-esteem is also raised during the explicit instruction of self-determination skills (Carpenter, 1995; Field & Hoffman, 1996a). However, the Field and Hoffman study was conducted with secondary students and specifically used their "Steps to SelfDetermination" curriculum. Carpenter used a self-concept measure to determine increases








in self-esteem, not a self-determination scale. Many of the post-secondary students with LD have never really understood the various aspects of having a learning disability, especially those diagnosed after entering college. Initially, finding out how a learning disability might affect one's life can be overwhelming and disheartening. It may take longer to come to terms emotionally with having a learning disability and then focus on what one can do instead of what one has trouble doing. The major concern about the declining trend in the Valuing Yourself area is that the research also reports a low use of psychological counseling among individuals with learning disabilities (Brier, 1994; Gregg et al., 1992; Malian & Love, 1998; Rosenthal, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993). A greater incorporation of counseling into the post-secondary self-determination course might be necessary.

Advocating. The significant increase in the self-advocacy skills of the participants in the experimental group after the intervention is the most important finding of this study. Researchers in this field have demonstrated clearly that the lack of ability to communicate about their learning disabilities is the leading barrier to success for postsecondary students with LD (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoff, et al., 1992; Cullen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997; Vogel et al., 1998; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993). The same researchers have also found that postsecondary students with LD must be able to communicate about their learning disabilities, because so many of the people they encounter have limited or no knowledge about learning disabilities. The item analysis on the advocating interview revealed that students did increase significantly in their ability to explain their learning disabilities. Other areas of








their advocating abilities still need improvement, such as requesting and justifying accommodations, asking about services, and requesting contact information. The student journals provided an important insight on how to improve the advocating training. In eight of the fifteen journals, the students indicated that they would have preferred to practice advocating with the instructor rather than with classmates. The students felt that they did not take the advocating role-playing seriously enough when just practicing with each other.

Anxiety. The difference in state and trait anxiety scores did not reach significance. The changes in the state anxiety scores of the control group were variable, but 12 of the 16 participants in the experimental group had decreasing scores. One of the students in the experimental group with an increase in anxiety had only a slight increase. The two largest increases in state anxiety were recorded for two seniors in the experimental group. It is important to note that both of these students were graduating the week of posttesting and were preparing to try out for professional football teams. These outside circumstances may have affected their anxiety scores. The final student with an increase in anxiety was the one student who repeatedly (in class on the advocating interview and in the journal) stated a disbelief in learning disabilities. This participant displayed a negative attitude throughout the study. Due to the small number of participants, getting significant results is highly sensitive. The scores of these three students could have kept the state anxiety results from being significant even though the intervention was effective in decreasing state anxiety.








Study skills. There was no significant difference between the experimental and

control groups in any of the study skills areas. Study skills were not directly taught in the intervention class. The results indicate that explicit instruction of self-determination does not automatically result in a student having or developing better study skills. Direct instruction of study skills is probably necessary. Implications for the Profession

The field of post-secondary learning disabilities is young and growing. Researchers and practitioners who work with college students with LD face the challenge of developing effective practices with limited information about what does and does not work. This study contributes to the knowledge base that informs these researchers and professionals.

Teaching self-determination. Teaching self-determination skills to post-secondary students with LD is important. This study demonstrated that post-secondary students with LD may increase their self-advocacy skills through explicit instruction of selfdetermination. Professionals who provide services for post-secondary students with LD should consider offering a course in self-determination and self-advocacy. This course could be offered through the campus office for students with disabilities or through the special education department, if one exists on campus. These offices may want to consider collaborating with their athletic association or department to make the most of the available resources. Being an effective self-advocate is essential to the success of postsecondary students with disabilities, and professionals in the field need to take a more proactive role to assure students have these necessary skills.








Clearly, teaching students about their learning disabilities in a one-semester course is not enough. Providing adequate counseling services for post-secondary students with LD, especially those diagnosed after entering the post-secondary setting, is extremely important. Increasing knowledge about learning disabilities may increase self-doubts and led to lower self-esteem. Providing adequate counseling services by counselors who are knowledgeable about learning disabilities is important. Continuing to provide support after educating individuals about their learning disabilities should be another area of focus for post-secondary service providers. High levels of anxiety can lead to a perceived lack of control and loss of commitment, which can hinder the development of some of the traits associated with successful adults with learning disabilities (e.g., control over one's life, desire to succeed, and persistence).

Another possible outcome of lowering self-value is depression. Providing the appropriate counseling services can reduce the risks of full-blown and long-term depression. This is true as well for individuals whose post-secondary setting is the workplace, not college. Professionals working with adults who have learning disabilities should be aware of the psychosocial difficulties, such as depression, that might develop as individuals with learning disabilities face the demands of their new environments.

Secondary school professionals who teach self-determination should ensure that their programs produce students who are able to self-advocate to individuals who have limited or no knowledge about learning disabilities. Advocating can be fostered through explicit instruction and role-playing. Initial role-playing with peers should lead to roleplaying with adults, specifically authority figures.









Student-athletes. The use of student-athletes as the participants in this study has presented some interesting implications. Professionals who work with student-athletes with LD should be aware of the ways being a successful athlete can mask problems that may lead to being an unsuccessful adult. Because the student-athlete possesses certain personality traits in one area, it may be incorrectly assumed that those traits occur in all areas. The inflated self-determination scores of these participants is a good example of how students can be self-determined in one area (sports) and, therefore, appear selfdetermined on tests of self-determination, but not act in a self-determined manner with regard to academics. Professionals who work with post-secondary student-athletes with LD need methods to help their students transfer some of the positive behaviors seen on the athletic field into the classroom and other areas of life.

Post-secondary student-athletes with LD may have an advantage over other postsecondary students with LD. These student-athletes have an area of life in which they have been self-determined. Many of the components of self-determination are taught to student-athletes as part of their training. Methods for analyzing strengths and weaknesses, being effective goal setters, having higher levels of self-confidence and selfefficacy are all emphasized and researched in athletics. Researchers have found these components to be important to athletic success. The researchers have examined the relationship of these components to athletic success and developed effective methods of instruction of these skills as they relate to athletics (Chung & Elias, 1996; Kingston & Hardy; 1997; Martin & Gill, 1991; Mathieu, Martineau, & Tannenbaum; 1993; Pierce & Burton, 1998).








Chung and Elias (1996) examined the relationship between adolescent problem behaviors and self-efficacy, social competence and life events. They found students who participated in sports and non-sports activities displayed fewer problems behaviors, had higher self-efficacy and social competence, and experienced more positive life events. Participation in school related activities can be linked to positive results in other areas of life. Professionals dealing with students with learning disabilities need find ways to help these students transfer the behaviors and skills they have learned (i.e., self-efficacy and goal setting) in other arenas into the classroom. Professionals might also steer students with learning disabilities toward participation in extra-curricular activities. Any areas of interest and talent, not just sports, should be strongly encouraged and developed. Transferring components of self-determination learned outside the classroom might be easier than trying to develop self-determination in students who have not experienced it at all.

Future Research

More research in the area of teaching self-determination and self-advocacy skills to post-secondary students with learning disabilities needs to take place. The number of participants in this study was small, so replication of the study with adaptations would be appropriate. Increasing the length of the intervention and including more in-depth learning in the areas of self-esteem, planning, evaluating, and study skills may be appropriate. Other components of the course could be altered based on the results and experience. Increasing the number of individual meetings so more time can be spent on evaluating each student's individual strengths, helping them capitalize on their strengths,








and helping them choose the most appropriate study strategies. More group activities are recommended, as well. The students' level of participation increased during group activities, and they held each other accountable. Having a learning disability was no excuse in these groups. Finally, having the students advocate with other adults, familiar and unfamiliar to them, should be increased.

Interventions that may improve self-esteem among post-secondary students with LD while at the same time increase knowledge among individuals outside the field of special education are needed. A study that has post-secondary students with LD providing training in leaming disabilities to professionals outside of the field might accomplish both of those goals. Students would gain self-esteem and self-confidence by becoming the experts and sharing that knowledge with others, especially those usually seen as authority figures.

Longitudinal studies are needed to determine if the secondary curricula used to teach self-determination in secondary schools produce self-determined students at the post-secondary level. If these curricula are only producing students who can act in a selfdetermined manner in a secondary setting, additional instruction will be necessary to promote self-determination in the post-secondary setting. These studies would also provide information on whether or not self-determination is subject- or situation-specific. The skills necessary to be self-determined may be situation-specific and may require continuous instruction and modification to promote generalization to other situations.

Research into the generalization of skills mastered in one area of life to another has demonstrated than generalization is difficult, and seldom automatic for individuals with a








disability (Stokes & Baer, 1977). However, transferring a skill from one area to another is easier than learning a skill that is unknown. Researchers need to examine the uniqueness of individuals with learning disabilities who have strong talents in other areas. Can their experiences in their areas of talent be used to teach more efficiently and effectively skills such as self-determination? A student with high levels of interest or talent in an area outside of school might be taught to be a better advocate by first advocating or educating others on the area of interest of the individual with LD. These ideas need to be developed and examined by researchers in the field of learning disabilities in order for individuals with LD to meet the challenges of post-secondary life.

Development of appropriate self-determination measures for individuals at the post-secondary level needs to be undertaken. Most of the tests available are specific to IEP meetings and other topics found in secondary settings. Researchers have begun to examine self-determination in the post-secondary setting. The validity of the measures with the post-secondary population needs to be examined.

Finally, researchers have begun to consider the uniqueness of post-secondary

student-athletes with learning disabilities. The unique characteristics of student-athletes with learning disabilities and how those characteristics can influence academic performance, positively and negatively, warrant further research. The similarities and differences between student-athletes with learning disabilities and nonstudent-athletes with learning disabilities needs to be better defined. Norms for this group on test instruments already normed for students with disabilities may need to be established.









Summary

This study has examined the effects of explicit instruction on the selfdetermination, advocating abilities, anxiety, and study skills of post-secondary students with learning disabilities. The students' abilities to advocate and communicate about their learning disabilities were significantly increased through the explicit instruction of selfdetermination skills. Professionals should ensure that students with learning disabilities are being instructed in the self-determination skills that will make them successful after leaving the secondary setting. More research into the area of self-determination and postsecondary students with learning disabilities is needed.















APPENDIX A
COURSE SYLLABUS









Personal Learning Styles Syllabus
EEX 4905 Section 0222


Instructor:


Sharon L. Blatz


Text:


* Help yourself: How to take advantage of your learning styles
by Gail Murphy Sonbuchner


* Learning Disabilities: A student handbook
by Susan Vogel


Materials:
" Planner - calendar of daily activities
� Portfolio - expanding folder
" Journal - Bound notebook

Objectives:
" Teach the meaning of learning disability.
" Increase a student's understanding of his/her personal learning disability.
" Inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability.
" Increase a student's ability to effectively communicate about his/her learning
disabilities.
" Teach the students how to set both long term and short term goals.
" Teach the students how to effectively plan and evaluate their progress.
" Demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful
adult.


Content:


The class will cover the following topics.

" The LD Vocabulary " Successful Adult Literature " Defining Learning Disabilities
* Manifestations of Learning Disabilities " Learning and Personality Styles " Accommodations " Legal Rights and Responsibilities " Goal Setting
" Self-Advocating




Full Text

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EFFECTS OF EXPLICIT INSTRUCTION OF SELF-DETERMINATION SKILLS ON POSTSECONDARY STUDENTS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES By SHARON L. BLATZ A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2000

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Numerous individuals provided support and assistance throughout the course of this study. I am grateful to all of those who contributed to the success of this project. First and foremost, my gratitude and appreciation go to those students who participated in the study. The students' enthusiasm and efforts made this study not only possible but also rewarding. I would also like to extend appreciation to the University Athletic Association's Office of Student Life. Their commitment to meeting the needs of student-athletes with learning disabilities made this study possible. My sincere thanks go to Dr. Keith Carodine, Timothy Aydt, Ann Hughes, Tony Meacham, Pat Meyers, Kay Puder, Dr. Jason Storch, Tom Williams, and Ivette Velez. The Department of Special Education has provided me with assistance, encouragement, and support throughout my program. By allowing me to offer this course they made this study possible. I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to Dr. James Mcleskey, Dr. Gary Reichard, Sharry Knight, Shaira Rivas-Otero, Vicki Tucker, and Michell Hicks. The Transition Genter at the University of Florida provided me with a number of professionally enriching opportunities during my program. The center also provided me with various forms of support. I would like to thank the following people for their ii

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patience and support: Dr. Jeanne Repetto, Dr. Stuart Schwartz, Drew Andrews, Wilma Fritz, Rosabel Ruiz, and Christy Stuart. ' A special group of individuals at the University of Florida called the "FIELD Group" have contributed greatly to this project from its inception. I would like to thank the following members for their commitment to this group and its work: Dr. Duane Dede, Dr. Holly Lane, Dr. Chris Janelle, Dr. Cynthia Garvan, Timothy Aydt, Danielle Symons, and Tamara Duckworth. The assistance of many individuals was required during the pretesting and posttesting phases of this study. Without the assistance of these individuals, this study would not have been possible. Special thanks are extended to the following individuals: Michell Hicks, Katie Smith, Karen Kolinski, Erica Souder, Nolan Simmons, Dawn Graziani, Mary Ann Nelson, and Bennie Alexander. My fellow doctoral students have enhanced this experience and provided me with camaraderie and emotional support. I would like to thank the following individuals who made this an enjoyable experience: Denise Clark, Elizabeth Hardman, Tamar Riley, Paige Pullen, Drew Andrew, Christy Stuart, David Lasseter, and Adory Beutei. I would also like to thank the members of my committee — Dr. Jeanne Repetto, Dr. Holly Lane, Dr. Cecil Mercer, Dr. Duane Dede, and Dr. Cynthia Garvan. 1 have been extremely fortunate to have been able to work with each of these individuals. The lessons I have learned will go with me throughout my life. As my committee chair. Dr. Jeanne Repetto has taught me a great deal about professionalism and life. Her ability to approach both with the highest level of iii

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commitment and enthusiasm has been a great inspiration. Staying focused and being proud of every accomplishment no matter how small are lessons I have learned from her. A tremendous amount of gratitude goes to both Dr. Holly Lane and Dr. Cynthia Garvan. These two individuals have provided encouragement, support, direction, patience,^d commitment to me and to this project. I cherish the expertise and guidance they have given me, but even more importantly the friendship. Finally, I would like to thank my family and friends. Without their unending support and encouragement this endeavor would never have been possible. The patience and love they have given me now and always made this accomplishment possible. iv

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i TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ii ABSTRACT vii CHAPTERS 1 INTRODUCTION TO THE PROBLEM 1 Rationale for the Study 3 Scope of the Study 5 DeUmitations of the Study 5 Limitations of the Study 5 Definition of Terms 6 Overview of Remaining Chapters 7 2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE 8 Post-Secondary Education 8 Students with LD 8 Successful Adults and College Students with LD 9 Barriers to Success 1 1 Self-Determination \j Defining Self-Determination 17 Theory Basis of Self-Determination 1 8 Models of Self-Determination 25 Current Self-determination Curricula 32 Self-Determination and Post-Secondary Education 37 Research Implications 4q 3 INTRODUCTION TO THE STUDY 42 Description of Hypotheses 42 Methods 43 Participants 43 Design 43 Instruments 44 V

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Procedures 47 Treatment of Data 53 Summary 53 4 RESULTS 55 Introduction 55 Statistical Analysis 56 Initial Group Equivalence and Bias 56 Post Intervention Analysis 63 Further Analysis 65 Between-Test Correlations 71 Journal Themes 74 Summary 75 5 DISCUSSION 76 Introduction 76 Overview of Study 76 Review of the Literature 76 Methods 77 Discussion of Results 78 Review of Result 78 Implications for the Profession 84 Future Research 87 Summary 90 APPENDICES A COURSE SYLLABUS 92 B SUMMARY OF INSTRUCTIONS DIARY 97 C INFORMED CONSENT SHEET 104 D ADVOCATING INTERVIEW SCORE SHEET 106 E SELF-DETERMINATION ITEM ANALYSIS 108 REFERENCES 115 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH 122 vi

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Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School ' of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirement for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy EFFECTS OF EXPLICIT INSTRUCTION OF SELF-DETERMINATION SKILLS ON POST-SECONDARY STUDENTS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES By Sharon L. Blatz December 2000 Chairperson: Jeanne B. Repetto Major Department: Special Education This study examined the effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on post-secondary students with learning disabilities. Participants were 36 post-secondary student-athletes with learning disabilities. Participants were randomly assigned to the experimental or control group. The experimental group participated in a semester-long course. In this course, the participants were taught through explicit instruction the information and skills required for self-determination (i.e., what a learning disability is and how their particular learning disability affects them; rights and responsibilities associated with having a learning disability; goal setting; and advocating skills). The control group received no self-determination instruction. The intervention was a semester-long course that met two days each week for 50 minutes. During each of the first four weeks of the semester, one additional class meeting was held. The participants were also required to meet with the instructor individually to vii

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discuss the manifestations of their particular learning disability. Dependent variables included self-determination scores, self-advocating scores, anxiety scores, and study skills scores. In addition, the participants were required to keep a journal about each class to determine benefits that might not be reflected in other measures and to give support to quantitative findings. The instructor kept a diary to assist in the replication and modification of the intervention. Statistical analysis of the data revealed significant group differences on the selfadvocacy measure. Specifically, post-secondary students with learning disabilities in the experimental group explained their disabilities better than students in the control group. The differences at posttest on the self-determination, anxiety, and study skills measures were not significant. The students' journals displayed themes of greater understanding about themselves and their learning disability. The findings of this research hold important implications for professionals who provide services to post-secondary students with learning disabilities and researchers in self-determination. The results of this study support the idea that explicit instruction of self-determination skills with post-secondary students with learning disabilities promotes self-advocacy. The ability to self-advocate is critical for post-secondary students with learning disabilities, and effective self-advocacy instruction should be a focus of professionals in the field. viii

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CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION TO THE PROBLEM To be successful in life, adults with learning disabilities (LD) require selfdetermination. This statement is true for adults in the work force and in post-secondary education. In fact, the laws that protect the rights of individuals with disabilities, the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) (1990) and Section 504 of the Vocational Rehabilitation Act, require individuals with disabilities to act in a self-determined manner. To receive any accommodations after the completion of secondary school, individuals with disabilities are required to self-disclose their disability. Effective self-disclosure requires self-determination. The components of self-determination include (a) selfconcept and self-esteem, (b) knowing one's rights, (c) self-advocacy, (d) planning and decision making, and (e) acting on and evaluating one's plan. Researchers in the field of special education who study adults and post-secondary education have established the need for training in the many components of selfdetermination (Adelman & Vogel, 1993; Anderson, Kazmierski, & Cronin, 1995; Brier, 1994; Brinckerhoff, 1994, 1996; Field & Hoffman, 1994; Field, Hoffman, & Posch, 1997; Momingstar, 1997; Ness 8c Price, 1990; Sands & Wehmeyer, 1996; Sitlington, Frank, &. Carson, 1992). Many of these professionals have created curriculum materials for the instruction of self-determination. Unfortunately, most of these curriculum materials are 1

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2 designed for students at the secondary level. Although using these materials has been found to be effective for increasing the self-determination scores of secondary students with LD (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak, Rose, & Bursuck, 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996a, Van Reusen & Bos, 1990), no link has been demonstrated between the use of these curricula and the ability to be self-determined in a post-secondary setting. In other words, no longitudinal studies of self-determination instruction have examined the application of self-determination skills in post-secondary settings. Because the materials and instruction in self-determination have maintained a secondary focus, this approach has no effect on the self-determination of post-secondary students who are identified as having a learning disability after high school. The rapidly increasing number of students with LD at the post-secondary level is well documented in the National Longitudinal Transitional Study (Blackorby & Wagner, 1996). An increase in comprehensive and effective services for individuals with LD at the post-secondary level has not been as evident. The discrepancy between the number of students with disabilities and the level of services at the post-secondary level is a reflection of the lack of self-determination of college students with LD. Students with LD, due to their lack of self-determination, have not demanded appropriate services. Without self-determination, college students with LD are ill-equipped (a) to explain their own disability and needs; (b) to initiate, manage, and even demand the appropriate services; (c) to educate those around them about LD; (d) to plan and evaluate interactions with others; and (e) to establish an effective support network. Self-determination is what enables a student with a learning disability to do all of the things listed above.

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Despite efforts to develop self-determination in students at the secondary level, students with LD at the post-secondary level are not self-determined (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1996; Brinckerhoff, Shaw, & McGuire, 1992; Cullen, Shaw, & McGuire, 1996; Greenbaum, Graham, & Scales, 1995; Norton, 1997). Therefore, explicitly teaching the skills of self-determination to post-secondary students with LD is necessary. Planning such instruction would require consideration of the key elements of self-determination and the key characteristics of successful adults. Reiff, Ginsberg, and Gerber (1995) listed the characteristics of successful adults in two categories: internal and external. The four internal factors listed were (a) a feeling of control over one's life, (b) a desire to succeed, (c) a goal orientation, and (d) reframing one's self-perception. The external factors of success were (a) persistence, (b) goodness of fit, (c) creativity, and (d) social ecologies. The characteristics of successful adults are linked to themes of control, acceptance, support, plannmg, and desire. Self-determination skills, such as knowing and valuing oneself, decision making, planning and evaluating, and knowing one's rights, are all associated with the themes of success. The development of successful college students and adults with LD can depend on effective instruction of selfdetermination skills at the post-secondary level. Rationale for the Study The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction in self-determination skills on college students with LD. In particular, this study examined the effects of self-determination instruction on students' levels of self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills.

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4 This study was based on the models of self-determination, their underlying theories, and the demonstration of a need for self-determination among post-secondary students with LD. The underlying theories of self-determination are normalization, equality of opportunity, self-efficacy, and cognitive evaluation. These theories have been used and combined to establish models of self-determination. Five well-known models of self-determination were reviewed to assist in the development of the intervention strategy: (a) Wehmeyer's model; (b) Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman's model; (c) Abery's model; (d) Powers, Sowers, Turner, Nesbitt, Knowles, and Ellison's Model; and (e) Field and Hoffman's model. Curriculum materials on self-determmation have been developed based on the models of self-determination. These curriculum materials were designed for secondary students. For the purposes of this study, portions of these curricula were adapted to meet the needs of post-secondary students. The course materials were selected by how well the activities and objectives matched the objectives of the self-determination intervention used in this study. The intervention was based on the following objectives: 1. Teach the meaning of learning disability. 2. Increase a student's understanding of his/her personal learning disability. 3. Inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability. 4. Increase a student's ability to communicate effectively about his/her learning disabilities. 5. Teach the students how to set both long-term and short-term goals.

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6. Teach the students how to plan effectively and evaluate their progress. 7. Demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful adult. A curriculum was designed around these objectives and was taught as a semester-long class. The general syllabus (see Appendix A) and the instructor's diary (see Appendix B) provide more detailed information about the intervention instruction. Scope of the Study In this section, the delimitations, limitations, and essential terminology of this study are described. These aspects of the study are important to the interpretation and generalization of the results. Delimitations of the Study This study was delimited by the use of college student-athletes with LD as the participants. These participants face different demands than the average college student (Sanders, 1997). The participants in the intervention were restricted by athletic eligibility requirements. The geographic location of the university in a medium-sized, north-central Florida city, Gainesville, is another delimiting factor. The participants were not selected based on any previously measured or reported ability to be self-determined. Gender and ethnicity were also not considered in the selection process. Limitations of the Study This study was limited by the exclusive use of college student-athletes with LD as the participants. Each participant was diagnosed with an LD prior to selection for the study. These diagnoses were reached at varying times and by varying standards. Although

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6 no specific information was known about the different standards applied, each diagnosis had been judged acceptable by the university's Office for Student Services. The inability to use a pure randomization process in the participant selection was a limiting factor. Definition of Terms Comprehension of the concepts, intervention, procedures, and variables in this study requires an understanding of the relevant terminology. This section provides a definition of the essential terms as the terms were used in this study. Self-determination is the ability to make effective decisions about and control one's own future, as much as possible, by having a complete understanding of one's self and one's rights and responsibilities. Self-advocacy is the ability to communicate effectively and stand up for one's own needs, rights, and desires. Self-awareness is the ability to recognize and accept one's abilities, limitations, interests, and desires. A l earning disability is a difficulty in information processing that creates significant discrepancies between a person's ability and achievement. A learning disability must be diagnosed by a qualified professional. Post-secondarv education most often refers to any educational experience after high school. This definition is used in much of the research reviewed in this study. For the purposes of this study and its participants, post-secondary education refers to a competitive 4-year university.

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Successful adults in the literature base discussed refers to individuals who are actively employed, living independently, involved in the community, and report active social experiences. Support systems refer to groups or individuals that provide information, build up self-esteem, assist without doing, and listen and provide feedback. A strong support system requires cooperation and collaboration. Overview of Remaining Chapters The second chapter of this study is a literature review. The literature review provides in-depth information on theories and research in the areas of self-determination for students with LD and post-secondary education for students with LD. The third chapter provides the details of the study design and intervention. The procedures to be used for participant selection and test giving are provided. A detailed description of the intervention course is also provided in Chapter 3. Chapter 4 contains the results of the study. The results of the ANCOVA's for each hypothesis are provided. Results of various follow-up tests are also provided. The fifth and final chapter provides a discussion of the relevance of the findings. Connections to previous literamre and research are discussed. Implications for professionals in the field of special education are presented along with possible fiiture research directions.

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CHAPTER 2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE The purpose of this chapter is to provide the essential background knowledge about post-secondary students with LD and the necessity for them to be more selfdetermined. The chapter is divided into two major sections: post-secondary education for students with LD and self-determination. Post-secondary education is discussed in three main sections: (a) students with LD, (b) successful adults and college students, and (c) barriers to success. The section on self-determination has five components. The first component includes a discussion of the definitions of self-determination. The next three components-theories of self-determination, models of self-determination, and current curricula focusing of self-determination-provide information on the most recognized elements of each topic. The final component, self-determination and post-secondary education, provides information on the applications of self-determination at the postsecondary level. In each section, studies are presented, discussed, and related to one another. Post-Secondarv Education Students with T.D Over the past 10 years, the number of students with disabilities who are attending college has been steadily increasing. Among students with disabilities, students with LD 8

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9 have been the fastest growing population (Blaclcorby & Wagner, 1996). Two factors that have contributed to this increase include the passage of the American with Disabilities Act of 1990 and improvement of transition services at the secondary level. The adjustment and success of college students with LD, like most things involving students with LD, vary from student to student. Researchers have attempted to determine what individual characteristics or external factors affect the adjustment and success in postsecondary educational settings of students with LD. Successful Adults and College Students with LD Reiff and fellow researchers (1995) interviewed 71 adults with LD after narrowing down the initial list of nominated individuals. The 71 adults with LD were placed either into the highly successfiil or moderately successful group. The researchers analyzed all of the interviews for themes and commonalties. A list of eight characteristics of successful aduhs with LD under two headings-internal and external factorswas devised. The four internal factors listed were (a) a feeling of control over one's life, (b) a desire to succeed, (c) a goal orientation, and (d) reframing. Reframing is the ability to accept that one has a learning disability, determine exactly what differences that means for oneself, and make life decisions based on that knowledge. The external factors of success provided were (a) persistence, (b) goodness of fit, (c) creativity, and (d) social ecologies. Goodness of fit refers to finding activities and careers that emphasize one's strengths and limit one's weaknesses. Goodness of fit is the external manifestation of reframing. Social ecologies are external support. Individuals who experience moral and psychological support during childhood proactively find individuals and/or groups that are supportive

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in their adult life. Other researchers reported similar characteristics associated with successful adults (Anderson et al., 1995; Spekman, Goldberg, & Herman, 1993; Spekman, Herman, & Vogel, 1992). Spekman, Herman, and Vogel also stated risk factors associated with being unsuccessful: (a) low self-esteem, (b) low frustration, (c) poverty, and (d) negative attitudes. Research on college students with LD has a different focus. The majority of the research focuses on adjustment issues, services provided, and student and faculty attitudes. Because college students with LD are also adults with LD, the characteristics that make adults successful make college students successful. The application of success factors in college is different than in adult life, but the underlying traits needed are the same. For example, students must re-identify themselves as LD to new professors each semester, which requires well-developed self-advocacy and interpersonal skills. In contrast, adults only need to use these skills when first requesting accommodations in the work place. Sanders and DuBois (1996) focused on what characteristics and behaviors at the post-secondary setting most affect the adjustment of students with disabilities. The researchers used self-reporting on the Student's Adaptation to College Questionnaire. The instrument was given to 29 fullor part-time college students with disabilities. Students with more effective problem-solving skills and good support systems were the most successful in their adjustment to college. Satisfaction with the services provided by the offices for students with disabilities also had a significant impact on the level of adjustment to college. Interestingly, students with physical disabilities reported more

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11 day-to-day stress, but this was primarily related to lack of physical access to facilities. Students with physical disabilities found faculty to be very helpful and supportive. Students with LD reported the opposite experience. The students with LD did not list a high level of day-to-day stress but had more frustration overall and felt very little faculty support. The existence of a higher level of overall anxiety among individuals with learning disabilities has been supported by research (Gregg, Hoy, King, Moreland, & Jagota, 1992; Morrison & Cosden, 1997; Ness & Price, 1990). Price (1988) reported that individuals with learning disabilities could perceive society as hostile, demanding, and threatening. Such barriers to success for college students with LD are well documented. Barriers to Success Most of the articles written about college students with disabilities address three main barriers: faculty attitudes, knowledge of service providers, and student knowledge and advocacy skills. These studies were limited to surveys and self-reports. The researchers contend that the rapid growth in the number of students with LD going to college has caused these barriers to exist. Many of these researchers believe that, with effort and education, these barriers could be turned into effective tools and supports. Facultv attitudes. Faculty attitudes about students with LD have not been positive. Because the methods of data collection have been surveys and self-reports, the majority with fewer than 50% return rates, one might expect that the faculty taking the time to return the forms would be those with a more positive attitude. Results by many researchers demonstrate the exact opposite. Most researchers found faculty had a negative attitude about LD and providing accommodations (Aune & Kroeger, 1997;

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12 Benham, 1997; Sanders & DuBois, 1995; Scott, 1994, 1995; Stagne & Milne, 1996). In a few recent studies, researchers reported improvements in faculty attitudes. Norton (1997) focused on community college professors and reported that the majority were very willing to accommodate but lacked knowledge on how to accommodate. Vogel, Leyser, Wyland, and Brulle (1999) also reported a more receptive attitude about providing accommodations. Among those faculty willing to accommodate, differences were reported. Benham (1997) found that male faculty with higher levels of education and more years teaching were the least willing to provide accommodations. Vogel and colleagues (1999) did not find this result but did indicate that a majority of the responders were women and that the type of accommodations did vary across genders. Women and younger faculty members were more willing to provide the more time-consuming types of accommodations, such as personal tutoring, note outlines, and specific study guides. Older faculty were willing to make accommodations that took less time or effort on their part, such as allowing students to tape record class, have notetakers, and have extended time on tests wdth a proctor. All of the researchers recommended that faculty should be better educated about learning disabilities, and many of the faculty members interviewed requested more information (Cullen et al., 1 996; Benham, 1 997; Stagne & Mibie, 1 996). Knowledge of service providers . Faculty members need more information about LD, but they are not the only staff members whose lack of knowledge was listed as a barrier by college students with LD. The knowledge of counselors, tutors, and peers was also listed as a factor that affect the successful adjustment of college students with LD

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13 (Sanders & Dubois, 1996). Students with LD did not participate fully in class and group tutoring sessions as a result of this perceived lack of understanding and knowledge on the part of peers and tutors (Stagne & Milne, 1996). Relationships are keys to the development of effective support systems of most successful students, and knowledge and understanding are important factors in these relationships. Tutors provide college students with LD much more than educational information. Tutors serve as mentors, friends, and counselors (Vogel, Hruby, & Adelman, 1993). Students with LD reported that tutors who did not understand LD were frustrating and ineffective (Sanders & Dubois, 1996; Stagne & Milne, 1996). Reiff et al. (1995) reported that trust was the key to effective relationships. Individuals with LD did not form trusting and open relationships with tutors who did not understand LD. Researchers reported that tutoring is one of the most common accommodations provided at the postsecondary level (Bigaj, Shaw, Cullen, McGuire, & Yost, 1995; Hock, Schumaker, & Deshler, 1995; Vogel et al., 1993; Vogel, Leonard, Scales, Hayeslip, Hermansa, & Donnells, 1998). Students with LD need specially trained tutors (Hock, 1998; Hock, Deshler, & Schumaker, 1993; Rings & Sheets, 1991). The tutors provided, however, are often peers or graduate students who have no background or knowledge of LD. Vogel et al. (1998), who researched services provided, commented on the fact that current research only gathers information on the services provided, not the quality of the services. Students with LD report the importance of peers who are understanding and knowledgeable, but research has not progressed beyond this level. Sanders and DuBois (1996) reported that peer acceptance is important to the successful adjustment of college

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14 students with LD. Stage and Milne (1996) reported reduced performance in academic settings due to a lack of peer support and understanding. The use of peers as tutors intensifies the effects of inadequate peer knowledge and understanding. As with tutors and peers, counselors are essential members of the support group of college student with LD. Researchers found that students need to be able to trust counselors and rely on them for guidance and support (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Norton, 1997; Reiff et al., 1995; Sanders & DuBois, 1996; Stagne & Milne, 1996). In a study of services provided to college smdents with LD, Bigaj and colleagues (1995) explored the role of academic counselors, or LD specialists, employed in office for students with disabilities. They found that many of the 503 institutions returning surveys indicated that this position had no qualifications directly related to LD or any type of disabilities. A majority of the individuals in this position held a master's degree, but the field in which the master's degree was earned often was unrelated to disabilities. Some 4-year institutions employed individuals with doctorates in this position, but again the doctorates were often in unrelated fields. Students with LD have special advising needs related to scheduling and course selection. This advice is quite often being given by professionals that lack the proper knowledge base to help the students. The success of college students with LD is heavily influenced by the academic counseling relationship. Vogel and Adehnan ( 1 992) reported the benefits of having highly trained advisors for students with LD. Counselors who lack knowledge provide an additional hurdle for students with LD.

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15 The emotional stress associated with having a learning disability is well documented (Adelman & Vogel, 1993; Bender & Golden, 1990; Durlak et al., 1994; Gregg et al., 1992; Ness & Price, 1990). Anxiety about having a learning disability is one of the most often seen emotional stressors. Gregg and her colleagues reported levels of frustration and anxiety in individuals with LD that mirrored scores for individuals with posttraumatic stress. Continuously high levels of anxiety can lead to a perceived lack of control over one's life. A lack of understanding about one's disability can contribute greatly to an increase in anxiety. Yet another source of anxiety is the difficulty many individuals with LD experience trying to locate others who can help them understand their disability. Many professionals studying individuals with LD listed psychological counseling as critical to student success (Brier, 1994; Gregg et al., 1992; Malian & Love, 1998; Rosenthal, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993). The same researchers also reported that students with LD use psychological support at a very low rate. The frustration with and fear of psychological counseling by students with LD are thought to stem from the counselors' lack of understanding of LD (Sanders & DuBois, 1996). Quality counseling services can make a difference in a student with LD cultivating many of the factors listed as essential to becoming successful adults with LD. Student kno wledge and advocacv skills . Students' lack of knowledge about their learning disabilities and their anxiety about talking about their learning disabilities cause many problems at the post-secondary level. The inability of students with LD to express knowledge about their learning disabilities to others is probably the most agreed upon

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16 point in the literature on college students with LD. Faculty and the students themselves stated that the students lacked the ability to communicate effectively about their learning disabilities. Researchers have found this lack of knowledge and communication on the part of students with learning disability at all post-secondary settings (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoff et al., 1992; CuUen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997; Vogel & Adehnan, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993, 1998). Students with LD must initiate and manage services at the post-secondary level according to the laws that regulate services. An inability to understand his/her learning disabilities and advocate for services can derail a college student with LD before the individual even gets started. At the very least, a student with LD who cannot advocate effectively for him-/herself is dependent Upon all the professionals mentioned previously, most of whom lack the knowledge and ability to provide appropriate assistance and support to the college student with LD. Understanding one's learning disability and being able to advocate for and manage one's rights are a part of self-determination. Teaching students the concepts and skills involved in self-determination is crucial to their success. Self-determination encompasses many of the characteristics of successful adults and has an impact on all of them. Researchers recommend teaching the skills of self-determination to all students with LD (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoff et al, 1992; Cullen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993; Vogel et al., 1998). Students at the post-secondary level should not be overlooked in this effort to educate and promote self-determination among students with learning disabilities.

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17 Self-Determination Defining Self-Determination Self-determination is a current "buzz" word in the field of special education. Selfdetermination has been defined in a variety of ways. Field (1996, p. 41) listed the most common definitions (see Table 1). The main reason for the differing definitions is that researchers approached the concept of self-determination from different perspectives. Despite the differing backgrounds, commonalties can be found among the definitions. All of the definitions reflect the elements of fi-eedom, decision-making, and determining one's own fiiture. In 1993, an effort was made to create one clear definition of selfdetermination. Campeau and Wolman (as cited in Field, 1996, p. 42) reported that the definition agreed upon at that time was "choosing and enacting choices to control one's life — ^to the maximum extent possible — based on knowing and valuing oneself, and in pursuit of one's own needs, interests, and values." Even though this agreed-upon definition was constructed, professionals researching self-determination prefer to use their individual definitions. Self-determination is a complicated concept even after it is defined. Many terms such as empowerment and self-advocacy are often used interchangeably with selfdetermination. Self-determination, however, is thought to encompass those terms. Selfdetermination is about having knowledge, having the courage and self-esteem to use that knowledge, using the knowledge, learning from the experience, and reconstructing the knowledge based on experience. Self-determination is a complicated concept and, thus.

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can be viewed from many perspectives. Theories from many avenues of study have been used in the development of self-determination models. Table 1 Self-Determination Definitions Author(s) Year Definition Deci and Ryan 1985 the capacity to choose and to have those choices be the determinants of one's acfions Ward 1988 the attitudes, abilities, and skills that lead people to define goals for themselves and to take the initiative to reach these goals Wehmeyer and Berkobien 1991 the abilities and attitudes required for one to act as the primary causal agent in one's life and to make choices regarding one's actions free from undue external influence or interference American Heritage Dictionary 1992 determination of one's own fate or course of action without compulsion; free will Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman 1992 choosing and enacting choice in persistent pursuit of self-interest Field and Hoffinan 1994 one's ability to define and achieve goals based on a foundation of knowing and valuing oneself Theory Ba sis of Self-Determination Self-determination is grounded in a variety of theories. This section provides background information into each theory. The essential components of these theories make up the basis for self-determination and its models.

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Normalization. The roots of self-determination can be found in the normalization principle. The normalization principle was created out of the work of Benji Nirje. Ward (1996) described Nirje' s work with individuals with cognitive disabilities and how the concept of normalization was developed. Through his work, Nuje discovered that all individuals should be involved in their own choices. The principle of normalization is that individuals with disabilities should have available to them the experiences and choices of life that are as close as possible to that of mainstream society. Normalization meant teaching individuals with disabilities how to make choices and giving them the same opportunities and experiences as mainstream society as often as possible. Ward (1996) explained how explicitly teaching skills such as decision making, selfadvocacy, and group membership was necessary to facilitate normalization. The skills of self-determination are very similar to that of normalization and both have the goal of providing individuals with disabilities as much independence as possible. Selfdetermination applies the principles of normalization to groups of individuals with disabilities outside of Nirje's original group. In the normalization principle, society was expected to provide individuals with disabilities opportunities for independence while self-determination principles support individuals with disabilities are entitled to the same independence as other members of society and should take control of their own destinies. Equality of opportunity. Equality of opportunity is actually a combination of two areas of thought-self-regulation and reconstructivism. Equality of opportunity is about creating situations that are a match between an individual's capacity and opportunity (Mithaug, 1996). Individuals must know their strengths and weakness

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20 enough to make choices that will create more opportunities for success. Individuals must determine that the gain expected from an action makes the risk presented worth taking. The individuals must know and utilize their resources. Knowing one's strengths, making good choices, and using available resources well are all part of self-regulation. Selfregulation requires individuals to be effective problem solvers. Mithaug (1996, p. 153) reported that self-regulated problem solving includes the following four components: 1 . Finding the match between capacity and opportunity that is necessary to commence goal pursuit, 2. Developing a strategy for optimizing gain, 3. Acting on that strategy to change environmental circumstance to produce expected gain, and _ _ 4. Adjusting to results by repeating the cycle until the goal has been either attained or abandoned. Self-determination takes the same cyclical approach as equal opportunity theory. Being taught to set goals, make decisions, and then adjust future actions based on the outcome of the original action is critical for individuals with disabilities. Equal opportunity theorists believe that improving an individual's capacity for autonomous thought and action and increasing that individual's opportunities for choicemaking will give that individual the greatest possibility of becoming self-determined. These theorists also believe that society has a responsibility to provide individuals who are less fortunate with the most opportunities. Being a self-determined individual is

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21 dependent on matching individual capacity with environmental opportunities. Three assumptions are essential to the equal opportunity theory (Mithuag, 1996, p. 161): 1 . Every person is an individual with a special set of talents, interests, and needs; 2. Every person deserves a fair chance to express those unique attributes in pursuit of self-defined ends in life; 3. As a consequence, there can be no overarching social mechanism for sorting individuals into categories of deserving and undeserving when it comes to distributing access to the fair chance. By stating these assumptions, Mithaug recognized the fact that being self-determined cannot happen m a vacuum. Society and one's environment have a significant role in a person's ability to be self-determined. Self-determination is about providing each individual with equal access to his/her dreams and goals by raismg his/her capacity and opportunities to maximum level. Self-efficacy. Bandura's (1977) self-efficacy theory maintains that human behavior is affected by a personal sense of control. Individuals who believe that they are in control are going to be more self-determined. A person's level of involvement in his/her life is directly related to the level of belief of being able to affect his/her life's course. Individuals with high levels of self-efficacy feel, think, and act in an optimistic manner (Bandura, 1977). Individuals with high levels of self-efficacy tend to be healthier and happier. High levels of self-efficacy promote creativity and risk taking. Being creative and taking risks, in turn, provides access to more opportunities. Bandura believed that the

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22 key to developing successful individuals was to provide them with a sense of selfefficacy. Four circumstances were identified as instrumental in increasing or decreasing selfefficacy. First, repeated successes are more likely to increase one's level of self-efficacy for that specific task and often increases an individual's confidence to master other areas of his/her life (Bandura, 1977). The opposite is also true. Failure decreases one's level of self-efficacy and lessens one's desire to attempt other challenges. Providing individuals with sure opportunities for success can help to build self-efficacy. Second, levels of self-efficacy can be increased through vicarious experiences (Bandura, 1977). Individuals who are in environments where others take risks and succeed without too much aversion are more likely to believe that they, too, can succeed. Individuals will decrease in self-efficacy and willingness to take chances if placed in an environment of failure and highly aversive consequences. Third, self-efficacy can be influenced by verbal persuasion (Bandura, 1977). Individuals can be convinced that they will succeed by verbal persuasion. However, the situation must be set up for absolute success or the individual is likely to end up with lower levels of self-efficacy. Verbal persuasion is not the most effective method for improving self-efficacy. The need for tight control over the situation decreases the likelihood of generalization to other tasks. The fourth and final circumstance that can alter self-efficacy is emotional or physiological arousal (Bandura, 1 977). Negative emotions, such as stress and fear, can lower an individual's self-efficacy. Negative emotions result in less risk taking. Learning

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to cope with negative emotions, however, can actually increase self-efFicacy. Learning coping skills allows one to feel a sense of control and success. Bandura's self-efficacy addresses an individual's sense of control and value. Recognizing one's value is essential to self-determination. Bandura provides many strategies for increasing one's sense of value and, in turn, one's ability to be selfdetermined. The interaction between self-efficacy and success has assisted professionals in developing effective instructional techniques. Cognitive evaluation. Cognitive evaluation deals with the relationship between behavior and intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Deci and Ryan (1994) believed that individuals are internally motivated to engage in activities for which there are no external rewards. These activities are mnately interesting and motivating to the individual. Selfdetermination, under this theory, becomes not only a capacity but also a need. Intrinsic motivation, pleasure, and desire are more powerful than most extrinsic forms of motivation. The highest level of self-determination can be reached by connecting the two types of motivation. In other words, when extrinsic motivation such as societal acceptance can be tied to an intrinsically motivated task, a person's level of selfdetermination is very high. According to Deci and Ryan (1994) extrinsic motivators can also have detrimental effects on intrinsic motivation. Enjoyment and pleasure can be removed from a task when the external motivator becomes the goal. This situation is often reported by professional athletes because money, recognition, and championships become

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24 the goal of participation rather than the pleasure and enjoyment of the activity. If they aren't winning, they aren't having flin. The conditions of the environment are important to self-determination. Selfdetermination is developed in environments that have the following characteristics (Deci, Connell, & Ryan, 1989; Deci & Ryan, 1985, 1994): 1. The environment encourages self-initiation and choice rather than controlling it. 2. The environment includes authority figures whose interpersonal style allows for information to be delivered without pressure or control and in a manner that provides choice and acknowledgment of feelings. 3. The environment provides positive feedback in an autonomously supportive manner. . " « 4. The environment provides corrective feedback in a noncritical and supportive manner. 5. The environment provides a meaningful and personal rationale for learning. 6. The environment acknowledges the feelings of the individual in a meaningful way. 7. The environment encourages the teaching of material that is of interest and enjoyable to the individual. 8. The environment increases an individual's level of competence by providing opportunities for perceived or real success.

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25 The environmental considerations listed above illustrate that self-determination is not simply about teaching someone skills. Self-determination is about learning skills and being able to use them within the existing environment. Models of Self-Determination The foimdational theories presented have led to the development of selfdetermination models. In this section, five models of self-determination will be briefly described. These models are (a) Wehmeyer's model, (b) Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman's model, (c) Abery's model, (d) Powers, Sowers, Turner, Nesbitt, Knowles, and ElUson's model , and (e) Field and Hoffinan's model. The major components of each model will be presented and discussed. Wehmeyer's model. Wehmeyer's model is an outcome-based model, in which selfdetermination is viewed as a set of attitudes and abilities that are learned throughout one's life and resuh in achieving one's goals and fulfillment of our adult role (Field, 1996). Wehmeyer (1996) identifies four essential characteristics of self-determination; (a) the individual acted autonomously, (b) the behaviors were self-regulated, (c) the person initiated and responded to the event in a "psychologically empowered" manner, and (d) the person acted in a self-realizmg manner. All four of the characteristics interact and must be present to achieve self-determination (see Figure 1). Wehmeyer (1996) further defmes the four characteristics. Autonomous functioning mcludes both functioning without excessive interference and recognizing the reality of interdependence (i.e., others will have some level of influence). Self-regulation encompasses the ability to examine one's environment and available strategies in order to

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plan, act, and evaluate one's behavior. Psychological empowerment refers to functioning from the belief that one has control over circumstances and the right skills needed to reach the desired outcome. Finally, self-realization refers to the ability to assess accurately one's abilities and knowledge and to use one's full potential in any situation. The four essential characteristics are further broken down into skill components. Included in these components are choice making, decision making, problem solving. Figure 1. Essential Characteristics of Self-Determination (Wehmeyer, 1996). internal locus of control, self-awareness, self-knowledge, self-efficacy, outcome expectancy, and goal setting. Wehmeyer (1996) asserted that educational efforts should focus on these components. These skill components can be learned through explicit instruction and opportunity.

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Mithaug. Campeau. and Wolman's model. The second model stems directly from Mithaug's (1996) work with self-regulation. Individuals who are self-determined are seen as those who can self-regulate the choices provided to them in their envirormient. A large emphasis is placed on problem solving. A person's ability to problem-solve effectively and creatively is essential. According to Mithaug, problem solving, referred to as gains toward goal attainment, can be explained and predicted using four factors: a) past gain toward the goal, (b) expectations for producing additional gain, (c) choices to produce additional gain, and (d) responses to those choices. The influence of self-efficacy in these factors is evident. Mithaug, Campeau, and Wolman (1994) list six major steps in their self-determination model: 1. The individual identifies and expresses his or her own needs, interests, and abilities. 2. The individual sets expectations and goals to meet his or her needs and interests. 3. The individual makes choices and plans to meet goals and expectations. 4. The individual takes actions to complete plans. 5. The individual evaluates results of actions. 6. The individual adjusts plans and actions until goal is achieved. This model also incorporates the concepts of capacity and opportunity. Capacity refers to an individual's abilities and his/her use of those abilities; opportunity represents the number of chances the individual has to act in a self-determined manner. Both concepts can be fostered and supported and are necessary for optimal growth and self-

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28 determination. Only when both are functioning optimally can the highest levels of selfdetermination be reached. Abery's model . Abery and Stancliffe (1996) introduced the ecology of selfdetermination. Abery (1994) laid the foundation for this perspective by asserting that self-determination is a dynamic interaction between an individual and his or her enviroiunent. Abery, drawing from Brofenbrenner's (1977) work, presents four levels of the ecosystem: microsystem, mesosystem, exosystem, and macrosystem (see Figure 2). Viewing self-determination as an ecology is not meant to disregard the importance of the individual. The individual and his or her abilities are at the center of the model and provide the motivation and knowledge base. The belief is simply that the factors linked to selfdetermination are promoted and hindered by the environment. ^ The microsystem is the setting where self-determination is acquired and most often practiced. This setting consists of family, school, and work environments. Face-toface interactions characterize this first level. At this level, promoting self-esteem and providing opportunities for personal choice and control are essential. Curricula have been developed to be used within the microsystem. The mesosystem consists of the linkages connecting the settings within the microsystem. Interagency collaboration is located in the mesosystem. Consistency in program planning, responses to behaviors associated with self-determination, and opportunities for personal control must occur in order to enhance self-determination. Providing family support and improving communications across settings are examples of strategies used in the mesosystem.

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29 Figure 2 . Abery's model Effects on individuals can be direct or indirect at the exosystem level. School policies or decisions, including ones that do not allow for students to experience opportunities for choice and input, are focused on at this level. Programmatic restraints can hinder self-determination. One form of intervention at this level is person-centered planning. Adopting this format allows professionals to support and promote selfdetermination. The final level, the macrosystem, expands to include cultural beliefs and values. The beliefs and values of society affect institutional policies and patterns. Previous

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examples of actions resulting from changing societal beliefs and values are deinstitutionalization and the passing of laws to protect the rights of individuals with disabilities. These changes have afforded individuals with disabilities more opportunities than ever before. Powers. Sowers. Turner. Nesbitt. Knowles. and Ellison's Model . Powers, Sowers, Turner, Nesbitt, Knowles, and Ellison (1996) developed a self-determination model called "TAKE CHARGE." Self-determination in this model is viewed as an attribute that is strengthened or weakened by both environmental factors and individual skills. Envirormiental conditions are categorized as opportunities and support. Individual conditions are labeled skills and information (see Figure 3). Powers, Sowers et al. list three key conditions for promoting self-determination: (a) opportunities for mastery experiences, with both accomplishments and management of obstacles to success being avenues for mastery experiences; (b) using knowledge (information) and skills to facilitate success; and (c) support from others. The developers of "TAKE CHARGE" were very concerned about the promotion of learned helplessness. Learned helplessness is when an individual has learned to depend on or use assistance without first attempting to solve the problem independently. It is believed that learned helplessness results from providing too much support and assistance. The authors of the "TAKE CHARGE" model carefully described support as methods of promoting a person's self-attributes and capabilities, preferably through a verbal method (Powers, Wilson, Matuszewski, Phillips, Rein, Schumaker, & Gensert, 1996).

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31 OPPORTUNITIES INFORMATION Self-Awareness Options Resources Expectations Decision Making Achievement Management of Obstacles SUPPORT Validation SKILLS Achievement Partnership Coping Encouragement Challenge Partnership ' ' Figure 3 . Conditions for Self-Determination (Powers, Sowers et al., 1996). In this model, self-determination is conceived of as a self-help skill. The individual must develop self-determination through experience and encouragement. Bandura's (1977) self-efficacy and internalization of success are strongly emphasized in this model. Field and Hoffman's model. Field and Hoffinan (1994) developed a model that takes into account individually controlled behaviors, environmental variables, affective factors and skill components (see Figure 4). Self-determination consists of five major components in this model: (a) know yourself, (b) value yourself, (c) plan, (d) act, and (e) experience outcomes and learn (see Figure 4). All of the components must be mastered to reach high levels of self-determination. The first two components are internal processes that provide the foundation for effective execution the remaining steps. Knowing and valuing oneself incorporate the power of self-efficacy into this model. Planning, acting.

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32 and experiencing outcomes and learning apply and strengthen the first two steps. Each of the components have been analyzed and broken down into more specific skills. These skills are the focus of instruction. As the skills are being taught, students must be provided with opportunities to practice the process as a whole. The cyclical nature of this model makes continuous practice essential. Current Self-Determination Curricula This section will provide information on current curricula designed to develop self-determination. The Steps to Self-Determination, the ChoiceMaker Self-Determination Transition Curriculum, IPLAN, Life Centered Career Education, and Become Your Own Expert will be briefly reviewed. Most of the curricula focus on secondary students and, with slight modifications, are recommended for use in younger grades. The Steps to Self-Determination curriculum . The Steps to Self-Determination curriculum was developed by Field and Hoffman (1996b). This 18-session curriculum is experiential, allovdng the student to establish goals and work toward accomplishing those goals. Teachers are encouraged to participate to provide a proper role model. The curriculum was developed with ten essential instructional components: (a) co-learner role for teacher, (b) emphasizing modeling, (c) cooperative learning, (d) experiential learning, (e) integrated or inclusive environments, (f) accessing support of family and friends, (g) emphasizing listening skills, (h) interdisciplinary teaching, (i) using appropriate humor, and 0) capitalizing on teachable moments. The program was field-tested in two Midwestern high schools. Both measures used were developed by the authors of the curriculum. Students who used the program demonstrated significant gains in self

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33 determination knowledge and on the checklist when compared to the control group (Field & Hoffman, 1996a). Know Yourself Value Yourself • Dream • Know the • Accept and value • Recognize and options O yourself respect rights & • Know your • Decide what responsibilities strengths, is important • Admire strengths that • Take care of weaknesses, needs. to you come from uniqueness yourself and preferences Plan • Set goals • Anticipate results •Plan actions to • Be creative meet goals • Visually rehearse i Act • Take risks • Negate • Communicate • Deal with conflict and criticism • Access resources • Be persistent and support i bxpenence Outcomes & Leam • Compare outcome to expected outcome • Compare performance to expected performance • Realize success • Make adjustments I — Environment Figure4. Model of Self-Determination (Field & Hoffman, 1 994)

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Durlak et al. (1994) instructed high school students using the Steps to SelfDetermination curriculum. The study participants were eight high school students with LD. The students were instructed in groups of four. Instruction took place twice a week for 30 minutes. The results indicated that the students were able to learn selfdetermination skills. The researchers discovered, however, that learning the skills and using the skills appropriately were two different things. Some of the students reported being uncomfortable talking about their disability, and all but one received comments about needing to improve clarity and comprehensiveness. Two of the eight students failed to complete all of the self-advocacy actions. The ChoiceMaker self-determination transition curriculum . The ChoiceMaker curriculum was developed by Martin and Marshall (1996). This curriculum directly ties self-determination to the lEP process and transition. ChoiceMaker consists of three sections: (a) choosing goals, (b) expressing goals, and (c) taking actions. Each section contains two to four teaching goals and objectives that relate directly to the six transitional domains (see Figure 5). This curriculum also recommends an experiential approach. The students should be preparing for and conducting lEP meetings while using the ChoiceMaker curriculum. Martin and Marshall (1996) connected the ChoiceMaker curriculum with selfdetermination by identifying 37 self-determination concepts, grouping them into seven domain areas, and then placing them into the curriculum matrix. The lesson packages provide the materials needed to teach each lesson and can be infused into existing school course work. ChoiceMaker can be used with both middle and high school students.

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-.'yi . " 35 rHOOSTNG GOAT S TAKING ACTIONS student interests student plan student skills and limits <--student action students goals student evaluation student adjustments TRANSITION DOMAINS post-high school education personal community participation (recreation employment and leisure) housing high school EXPRESSING GOALS student leading lEP meeting student reporting Figure 5 . Connecting Transition and ChoiceMaker (Martin and Marshall, 1996). Despite being designed for special education students, this curriculum can be used with general education students if the IE? related activities are removed or adapted. IPLAN. IPLAN is an intervention designed to increase student participation at lEP meetings. The strategy was developed by Van Reusen and Bos. It is part of the University of Kansas Strategies Intervention Model. IPLAN is an acronym for the five steps of the strategy, designed to be taught over a two week period for approximately 45 minutes a day: IInventory your strengths, weaknesses you need to improve, goals and interest, and choices for learning P Provide your inventory information L Listen and respond

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A Ask questions N Name your goals The strategy was piloted at a junior high school (Van Reusen & Bos, 1990). The students who received instruction in the strategy averaged 109 contributions during their lEP meetings. Students who had not received instruction averaged only 3 1 contributions. The Life Centered Career Education curriculum . The Life Centered Career Education (LCCE) curriculum was not designed specifically to address self-determination, but it has been used for this piirpose. The curriculum is a functional life skills curriculum. There are three domains used in this curriculum: (a) daily life skills, (b) occupational guidance and preparation, and (c) personal-social skills. LCCE was examined for its appropriateness for promoting self-determination. Four competency areas were found to match the self-determination components: (a) achieving self-awareness, (b) acquiring selfconfidence, (c) making adequate decisions, and (d) achievmg independence. Along with these four competencies, 17 subcompetencies were located. This curriculum was revised and strengthened to be used as a self-determination program (Wehmeyer & Brolin, 1996). The Becom e Your Own Expert curriculum . The Become Your Own Expert curriculum (Carpenter, 1995) was not designed as a self-determination curriculum directly. It was designed as a self-advocacy curriculum. Self-determination is seen as a characteristic that is needed of individuals who are effective self-advocates. The knowledge base and skills described in the previous models and curricula of selfdetermination are also included in this self-advocacy curriculum.

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37 Prior to development of this curriculum, a program was conducted to determine what skills were needed for effective self-advocacy at the post-secondary level. The author developed activities to teach and promote effective self-advocacy based on the result of that yearlong program and relevant research articles. The curriculum was then piloted in a secondary school. A self-concept scale, an informal teacher-developed selfadvocacy scale, and videotaped interviews with the students were used to evaluate the effectiveness of the curriculum. Carpenter (1995) reported that student growth in selfadvocacy and self-esteem was significant. These results led to the conclusion that explicit teaching of self-advocacy skills is effective and necessary. Because self-advocacy is the ultimate goal of this curriculum all the activities are connected to becoming a better self-advocate. This self-advocacy orientation makes this curriculum unique. Instead of the focus being the lEP process, which is essential to secondary students, the focus is on being an effective self-advocate, which is essential to all post-secondary students. Each of these curricula is designed to develop self-determination or its components in secondary students. The following section explains the importance of selfdetermination at the post-secondary level and its current status in post-secondary settings. Self-Deter mination and Post-Secondarv Education Self-determination skills are mandated by law at the post-secondary level. Both ADA and Section 504 require students to self-identify in order to receive services from colleges and universities. Students must be able to self-advocate by explaining their

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learning disabilities and what accommodations they feel are necessary. College students with LD must often work with professionals who have limited knowledge about learning disabilities. These professionals will rely on the student for information concerning learning disabilities (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Norton, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1994; Sanders & DuBois, 1996; Vogel et al., 1999). It has been shown that many college students with LD are not effective at communicating about their learning disabilities and accommodation needs (Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1994; 1996; Brinckerhoff, et al., 1992; Cullen et al., 1 996; Greenbaum et al., 1 995; Vogel et al., 1 998; Vogel & Adelman, 1 992; Vogel et al., 1993). After interviewing 107 college students with LD, Vogel et al. (1993) reported that most students had limited self-awareness or knowledge about their learning disabilities. Frustration on the part of students with LD about not being able to understand their learning disabilities and communicate their needs to others leads to increased anxiety and lower self-esteem. Frustration on the part of the faculty and staff with students' inability to express their needs exacerbates the negative attitude about providing accommodations reported to exist among faculty members at post-secondary institutions (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Sanders & DuBois, 1995; Stagne & Mihie, 1996; Scott, 1994; 1995). The overwhelming consensus among professionals that college students with LD are in desperate need of self-determination skills has resuhed in action. Unfortunately, that action is directed almost entirely toward secondary students with LD. The classes and curricula currently available are geared toward secondary students. This is a very positive development for secondary students, although the actual teaching of self-

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determination at the secondary level is not wide spread. Only three states mentioned teaching self-determination skills on their transitional education plans (Patton, Cronin, & Jairrels, 1997). The current recommendation from researchers is to begin teaching selfdetermmation skills at a younger age (Vogel, 1996; Weimer, Cappotelli, & Di Camillo, 1998). Although the research, curricula, and recommendations for a_ earlier initiation are all positive developments, the needs of post-secondary students with LD are still being neglected. Post-secondary students with LD have the greatest immediate need but are receiving the least assistance. Using the currently available curricula on self-determination with college students with LD is not appropriate. The focus on the lEP process is inappropriate for postsecondary students. In addition, the skills needed to self-advocate with familiar, supportive teachers and individuals are totally different than those needed to selfadvocate with strangers who are often lacking in knowledge and unreceptive. Durlak et al. (1994) were able to teach some self-determination skills to secondary students but were not as successful at gettmg the students to self-advocate, even in the more supportive secondary setting. Developing and implementing methods for teaching post-secondary students with LD both the necessary self-determination skills and how to be an effective self-advocate has been neglected by researchers. A majority of the barriers to success at the postsecondary level can be tied to poor self-determination skills. Professionals need to discover the best methods for teach self-determination skills at the post-secondary level.

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40 Carpenter and the Department of Education in Minnesota (1995) did take a postsecondary needs approach. The Become Your Own Expert curriculum has a foundation in post-secondary needs. This curriculum focuses on self-advocating, and all skills are taught in reference to creating better self-advocates. The curriculum, however, was never taught to the post-secondary students who need it. Although teaching self-determination at the secondary level has yielded positive results (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak et al., 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996; Van Reusen &. Bos, 1 990), the need for self-determination instruction at the post-secondary level is clear. The challenge remains; however, to develop a self-determination curriculum that is effective with post-secondary students with LD. Research Implications The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction in self-determination skills on college students with LD. The intervention in this study was a course on self-determination designed for the post-secondary student with LD. The concepts and objectives used in this course were a combination of the "Become Your \ ' O Own Expert," "Steps to Self-Determination," and "ChoiceMaker" curricula. The largest contribution of activities came from the "Become Your Own Expert" curriculum. The goals of this intervention were to 1. Teach the meaning of learning disability. 2. Increase students' understanding of their personal learning disability. 3. Inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability.

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41 4. Increase students' ability to effectively communicate about their learning disabilities. 5. Teach the students how to set both long-term and short-term goals. 6. Teach the students how to plan and evaluate their progress effectively. 7. Demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful adult.

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CHAPTER 3 METHODS AND PROCEDURES The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction in self-determination skills on college students with LD. Chapter 3 provides information on the participants and procedures used in this study. Following an explanation of the hypotheses of the study, this section provides a detailed explanation of the research methods. Specifically, the participants, design, instruments, procedures, and treatment of the data are described. Description of Hypotheses This study attempted to answer one main question: What effects will explicit instruction of self-determination skills have on college students with LD? The following null hypotheses were developed to answer the main question of interest. Hi: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group. H2: There wall be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group. H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group. 42

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43 H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. Methods Participants The participants in this study were 40 university students with diagnosed learning disabilities. The students in the study were all participating in a tutoring program for individuals with LD at the university. A total of 52 students participate in the tutoring program, but any student who attends tutoring sessions for less than one hour a week or whose attendance was irregular was eliminated from the list of possible study participants. The age range of the participants is 18-25 and all of the students are studentathletes at the university. As required by the University of Florida Institutional Review Board (UFIRB), all of the participants provided informed consent to participate. A copy of the informed consent is provided in Appendix C. Design In this study a prospective randomized pretest-posttest design with two groups was used (see Table 2). The experimental group consisted of those students randomly assigned to the self-determination-training course taught through explicit instruction. The control group consisted of the residual 20 students. The dependent variables were the post intervention self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills scores. The independent variables were explicit instruction of self-determination skills (self-awareness and self-advocacy) and pre intervention self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills scores.

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44 Table 2 Experimental Design Group Procedures Experimental R 0^ X 0^ Control R 0* (no intervention) R = Random Assignment, O' = Pretest, X = Intervention, 0^ = Posttest Instruments Four instruments were used to collect data related to students' self-determination: (a) a self-determination scale, (b) an advocating checklist, (c) an anxiety inventory, and (d) a study skills inventory. The self-determination scale was used to measure changes in self-determination after the intervention. Being able to communicate effectively is one of the greatest needs among post-secondary students with LD. The advocating checklist was used to measure changes in the students' abilities to communicate about their learning disabilities. Anxiety can affect one's ability to communicate effectively and students with LD are reported to have high levels of anxiety. The anxiety measure was taken immediately before the advocating interview was conducted. The anxiety inventory was used to measure changes m both state and trait anxiety after the intervention. Finally, the study skills inventory was used to measure any increase in study skills after the intervention. A measure of the students' study skills was taken in an effort to determine if explicit instruction in self-determination skills would result in better study skills among post-secondary students with LD. .

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45 The first instrument mentioned was the Students Self-determination Scale (Hoffman, Field, «fe Sawilowsky, 1995). This test was one of the six tests these researchers developed to measure self-determination. The test had a reliability of alpha .91. The test contains 92 yes-no items that make up an overall self-determination score and five self-determination subcategories (a) Knowing Yourself, (b) Valuing Yourself, (c) Act, (d) Plan, (e) Experience Outcomes and Learn. The second instrument was an advocating checklist (see Appendix D) which was used to score the advocating interviews. The checklist contains 15 items. The items addressed communication skills (i.e. eye contact, voice tone, and speaking in complete sentences) and knowledge of one's learning disabilities (i.e. explains learning disability, indicates strengths and weaknesses, and requests accommodations). The number of points possible for each question varied wdth 01 being the smallest range and 0-3 being the largest range. The highest possible score was 36. The third instrument was the State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI, Spielberger, 1977). The test is a self-report that has 20 state anxiety questions and 20 trait anxiety questions. State anxiety pertains to an individuals level of anxiety at tiie moment the measure is given while trait anxiety pertains to an individual's "normal" level of anxiety. Each question is answered on a 4 point Likert scale (1 being "not at all" and 4 being "very much so"). The alpha reliability for the state anxiety is .91 for college males and .93 for college females. The alpha reliability for the trait anxiety is .90 for college males and .91 for college females.

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i ' ' * The fourth instrument was the Learning and Study Skills Inventory (LASSI). The LASSI contains 77 items that are answered on a Likert scale of 1-5. The test questions are sorted into 10 different sections: (a) Attitude, (b) Motivation, (c) Time Management, (d) Anxiety in School, (e) Concentration, (f) Information Processing, (g) Selecting the Main Ideas, (h) Study Aids, (i) Self Testing, and (j) Test Strategies. The validity and test-retest reliability for each section is provided in Table 3. ' . : Table 3 LASSI validity and reliability scores Section Validity Test-Retest Reliability Attitude .72 .75 Motivation .81 .84 Time Management .86 .85 Anxiety in School .81 .83 Concentration .84 .85 Information Processing .83 .72 Selecting the Main Ideas .74 .78 Study Aids .68 .75 Self Testing .75 .78 Test Strategies .83 .81

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47 Procedures Participants . To select participants for this study, all of the student-athletes with LD who were part of the tutoring program and met the attendance requirements were listed in alphabetical order. This list consisted of 40 eligible participants who were then numbered 1-40. A computer program randomly selected 20 numbers and the corresponding student names were placed in the experimental group. Due to athletic eligibility constraints and scheduling conflicts some students were unable to remain in the experimental group. The students who were unable to stay in the experimental group were immediately placed in the control group. The computer program then selected another set of numbers to replace the students who had athletic eligibility concerns. This process was continued until at least 15 students were in the experimental group. The remaining students were all placed in the control group. Two of the original students were unable to participate in the study at all because internships required them to be out of the area and two others chose not to participate. After the selection process was completed the experimental group contained 1 6 participants and the control group contained 20 participants. Demographic information on all of the participants is provided in Table 4. Additional information on race and sex distribution in each of the groups is provided in Figures 6 and 7. The sex distribution between the two groups and in comparison with the whole group appears to be similar. The larger number of males overall is a reflection of the tradition of athletics, particularly at the college level. Males have be more aggressively

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48 Table 4 Whole Group Demographics Characteristic Average Median Age 20.4 20.5 Grade Point Average 2.43 2.39 Credits 66 71.5 100% 90% Whole Group Class Control African American Caucasian Figure 6. Race Distribution 100% 90% 80% Whole Group Class Control Male Female Figure 7. Sex Distribution

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49 encouraged to participate in athletics and have been given more opportunities. Male students who were struggling in school were probably more often directed toward athletics. Despite the increase in opportunities for women since the passage of Title IX (banning any discrimination against women, includmg in sports) the proportion of women participating at the college level has not yet equaled that of men (Lapchick, 1996). Among all of the participants, the racial percentages were almost even. The race distribution among the two groups, however, shows that more Afi-ican Americans were in the control group. The rate of occurrence was not significant, however. Statistical group comparisons were performed to determine if any significant differences between the groups existed. The results of these statistical tests are provided in Table 5. The only initial significant difference between the two groups was Year in School. This was probably a resuh of students being excluded from the experimental class due to eligibility reasons. These reasons were often related to required courses and significant progress toward graduation. The results of t-tests done on the pretests to determine initial group equivalence on the various dependent measures are provided in chapter 4. Assessments. The participants took the LASSI, and the Student Self-Determination Scale prior to the beginning of the intervention. The tests were administered individually. The tests were all tape-recorded and the students were given the option of using the taped format. All of the participants also participated in a five-question interview prior to beginning the intervention. Immediately before the interview and immediately after being

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instructed that they would be interviewed about their learning disabilities, the participants were given the STAI to complete. The interviews were all videotaped. Table 5 Significant Differences in Group Demographics Characteristic Class Control Significance Age 20.3 20.6 .59 GPA Credits 54 1 ^ 1 n Race .30 AA 6 11 C 10 9 Sex .68 F 5 5 M 11 15 Year in School .05* Freshman 8 2 Junior 4 11 Senior 4 7 Major .16 Health & Human Performance 5 11 Liberal Arts & Sciences *c;„^:t: * nc i i 11 9 The interview protocol consists of the following questions: (a) "please tell me about yourself and your learning disability;" (b) "what accommodations do you feel you will need;" (c) "what external supports do you use;" (d) "do you have anything else you would like to add;" (e) "is there any information I can give you at this time?" The same

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51 person, who was unknown to all of the participants, conducted all the interviews. The interviews were graded by two independent graders to evaluate self-advocacy skills. The graders were trained on mock interviews until 90% agreement was reached. Interrater agreement was calculated for 30% of the interviews. The interrater agreement was 80%. Interrater agreement was determined by calculating the number of agreements divided by the number of agreements plus the number of disagreements and multiplying by 100 [i.e., (A/(A+D)xl00]. Intervention . The intervention course started at the beginning of the spring semester and after completion of the pretesting. The participants in the experimental group were taught self-awareness and self-advocacy skills during a semester-long class. The course was offered pass/fail to limit the effects earning a grade might have had on student behavior. The course met three times a week for 50 minutes for the first three weeks and then twice a week for 50 minutes for the remainder of the semester. After the first three weeks, the students were required to meet with the instructor twice during the semester on an individual basis to discuss the specific manifestation of their learning disabilities. The objectives of the intervention were to 1. teach the meaning of learning disability; 2. increase students' understanding of their personal learning disability; 3. inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability; 4. increase students' ability to effectively communicate about their learning disabilities;

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52 5. teach the students how to set both long-term and short-term goals; 6. teach the students how to plan and evaluate their progress effectively; 7. demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful adult. The class included instruction on understanding learning disabilities, legal rights, determining appropriate accommodations, portfolio development, the benefits of counseling, self-advocacy role-playing, and learning strategies. The students were expected to participate in class and keep a reflective journal of each day's activities. The journals were collected and examined for patterns that might further clarify or support the quantitative results. The instructor also kept a brief daily diary to assist in clarifying the intervention. No formal tests were given during the course but occasional knowledge checks occurred. A majority of the classroom activities were done in cooperative learning groups. See the syllabus (Appendix A) and instructor's diary (Appendix B) for more specific information on the intervention. At the end of the semester, posttesting was conducted using the same procedures used during pretesting. In an effort to limit possible effects on participant answers the students' pass/fail grades were turned in prior to posttesting. Post-intervention interviews were done at this time with a different unknown person from the initial advocacy interviews. As in the case of the initial interviews, the interviewer was the same person for all participants. .

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53 Treatment of Data The data from the four measures (i.e., self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills) were examined and compared. Univariate procedures were performed on the pretests to determine a symmetrical distribution of the data. T-tests were also conducted on the pretests to determine if any initial group differences existed. A series of analyses of covariance (ANCOVA) were used to evaluate the original four hypothesis listed below: Hi: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group. H2: There will be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group. H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group. H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. The results of these ANCOVAs are reported in chapter 4 along with the results from the follow-up statistical tests. Supportive evidence from the student journals is also reported in Chapter 4. Summary Chapter 3 described the methods and procedures used in this study. The participants were college students with LD who were participating in a tutoring program for students with LD. The participants were also all student-athletes. The intervention was a course on self-determination. The course lasted one semester and the college

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student-athletes with LD were randomly placed in the course (experimental class). The participants were administered preand posttest measures of self-determination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills. The data were analyzed to determine if any significant differences existed between the control and experimental groups.

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CHAPTER 4 RESULTS Introduction The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of expHcit instruction of self-determination skills on post-secondary students with learning disabilities. Four hypotheses about the effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on postsecondary students with learning disabilities were developed and tested: '^^ Hi: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group. H2: There will be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group. H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group. H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. The participants in this study were 36 college student-athletes with learning disabilities. The participants were randomly assigned to the experimental and control groups. The participants in the experimental group were enrolled in and attended a class on self-determination and self-advocacy for 32 sessions. The control group was not given any instruction on self-determination and self-advocacy. Prior to instruction, all of the 55

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56 participants were pretested on self-determination, anxiety, advocating, and study skills. All of the participants were again tested in these four areas after the intervention was complete. Two students, however, dropped out of the study prior to the posttesting. One student was in the experimental group and one student was in the control group. This lowered the total number of participants to 34. The experimental group had 1 5 participants and the control group had 19 participants. Various statistical tests were performed to determine the distribution of scores, equivalence of the groups, and the effectiveness of the intervention. Specifically, an ANCOVA was conducted on each of the posttest scores of the two groups. More detailed information on the tests conducted and the resuhs of these tests along with various follow-up tests are provided within this chapter. A thorough discussion of the conclusions and implications that can be drawn from these results is provided in Chapter 5. Statistical Analysis Initial Group Equivalence and Bias Equivalence of control and experimental groups was tested using t-tests for the continuous measures of age and grade point average and chi-square tests for the categorical measures of gender, race, and year-in-school (see Table 5 for a summary). Groups were found equivalent on all but the "year-in-school" measure on which the control group had significantly more seniors than the experimental group. The relationships among demographic variables and the baseline measures of selfdetermination, advocating, anxiety, and study skills were examined. In Table 6, the relationship of the demographic variables with each of the self-determination pretest

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57 scores is provided. The self-determination scores included the overall self-determination score, along with the subtests: Knowing Yourself, Valuing Yourself, Plan, Act, and Experience Outcomes and Learn. In Table 7, the relationships of the demographic variables to the pretest Advocating Interview scores are presented. The relationship between the demographic variables and the two pretest anxiety measures, State Anxiety and Trait Anxiety, are provided in Table 8. Finally, Table 9 provides information on the relationship between the demographic variables and each of the pretest study skills scores: Attitude, Motivation, Time Management, Anxiety with School, Concentration, Information Processing, Selecting Main Ideas, Study Aids, Self Testing, and Test Strategies. The continuous demographic data and baseline measures were analyzed by computation of Spearman correlations and tests to ascertain if correlation coefficients differed from zero. For the categorical demographic data, relationships with baseline measures were determined using ANOVA models. Multiple comparisons were analyzed using the Ryan-Einot-GabrielWelch Multiple Range Test. The continuous baseline measures were checked for normality using normal probability plots. No departures from normality were detected indicating the appropriateness of the ANOVA procedures. Several significant relationships were detected. The seniors tended to exhibit higher scores on selecting main ideas (a mean of 16.7 for seniors and 12.7 for freshmen; significantly different at the p<.05 level). The seniors and juniors also performed significantly (p<.05) better on the self-determination subset action (21.4 for seniors, 20.07 for juniors, and 17.10 for freshmen). The seniors scored lower (better) on the state

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58 Table 6 Relationship Between Self-Determination and Demographics Pretest Age Year-in-school GPA Corr. (r) p-value Mean p-value Corr.(r) p-value Overall .30 .08 F-68.80 NS .28 .09 Self-Determination J-75.27 S-78.18 Knowing Yourself .25 .14 F-12.60 J-14.07 S-14.27 NS .11 .54 Valuing Yourself .25 .14 F-12.70 J13. 40 a-14.0U NS .22 .21 Planninp .22 .20 F-13.80 J-14.55 S-15.00 NS -.09 .61 Act .34 .04* F-17.10 J-20.07 S-21.46 F-JS .05* .30 .08 Experience Outcomes .18 .30 F-12.60 NS .19 .28 and Learn J-12.73 S-13.91 Pretest Sex Race Mean p-value Mean p -value Overall Self-Determination F-74.40 M-73.96 .68 AA-74.65 C-74.11 .89 Knowing Yourself F-13.80 M-13.69 .87 AA-13.35 C-14.50 .37 Valuing Yourself F-13.30 M-13.42 .87 AA-13.41 C-13.37 .95 Planning F14.90 M-14.38 .60 AA-14.29 C-14.74 .67 Act F-19.70 M19.65 .97 AA-20.18 C-19.21 .41 Experience Outcomes and Leam F-13.70 M-13.81 .29 AA-13.41 C12.74 .49 significant at .05 level

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59 Table 7 Relationship Between Advocating and Demographics Pretest Age Corr.(r) p-value Year-in-school Mean p-value i GPA Corr.(r) p-value Advocating Interview .23 .18 F-11.00 J-13.23 S-13.41 NS -.06 .73 Pretest Sex Mean pvalue Mean Race p-value Advocating Interview F-12.65 M-12.67 .99 AA12.35 C-12.95 .64 y 'A * « « > and trait anxiety measures. The state anxiety means were 43 for freshmen, 36. 13 for juniors, and 26.36 for seniors; the freshman and juniors were significantly (p<.05) different from the seniors. The trait anxiety means were 45.10 for freshmen, 37.27 for juniors, and 33.73 for seniors; the freshman were significantly (p<.05) different from the juniors and seniors. On the state anxiety and on the trait anxiety measure the freshmen were significantly (p<.05) different from the juniors and seniors. The only significant demographic difference between groups was year-in-school (the control group had significantly more juniors and seniors than the experimental group) but since the upperclassmen scored more favorably, the nature of this potential bias favored the control group. Hence, any differences found between groups should be attributed to the explicit instruction intervention and not the year-in-school factor.

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60 Table 8 Relationship Between Anxiety and Demographics Pretest Age Year-in-school GPA Corr.(r) p-value Mean p-value Corr.(r) p-value State Anxiety -.47 .004* F-43.00 FJ-S .29 .08 J-36.13 .05* S-26.36 Trait Anxiety -.46 .005* F-45.10 F-JS .00 .98 J-37.27 .05* S-33.73 Pretest Sex Race Mean Pvalue Mean p-value State Anxiety F-37.20 .52 AA-34.94 .95 M-34.23 C-35.16 Trait Anxiety F-43.30 .05* AA-38.29 .97 M-36.46 C-38.42 *significant at .05 level No significant correlation was found between GPA and any of the measures. Significant positive correlations were found between age and five measures: attitude (r=.35 at p<.03), anxiety about school (r=.35 at p<.03), concentration (r=.42 at p<.01), selecting main ideas (r=.49 at p<.002), of self-determination subset action (r=.34 at p<.04). Negative correlations were found on both the state and trait anxiety (r= -.47 at p<.004 and r= -.46 at p<.005, respectively). Two measures, attitude and trait anxiety, demonstrated a significant difference between sexes. Females had higher attitude scores than males (30.50 vs. 24.58 at p<.01) and higher trait anxiety scores (43.30 vs. 36.46 at p<.05). Selecting main ideas was the only area to indicate a significant difference between races. African Americans scored significantly higher than Caucasians (16.65 vs. 13.00 at p<.002).

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61 Table 9 Relationship Between Study Skills and Demographics Pretest Age Year-in-school GPA Corr (r) p-value Mean p-value Corr (r) D-value Attitude .35 .03* F-24.00 J-26.00 S-28.55 NS .10 .58 Motivation .02 .89 F-24.00 J-26.00 S-28.55 NS .13 .46 Time Management .05 .77 F-20.30 J-21.07 S-20.64 NS .04 .80 Anxiety with School .35 ..03* F-22.10 J-25.07 S-28.18 NS .25 .14 Concentration .42 .01* F-18.4 J-20.67 S-23.46 NS .08 .63 Information Processing .06 .73 F-21.90 J-25.40 S-22.91 NS -.08 .63 Selecting the Main Idea .49 .002* F-12.70 J14.60 S-16.73 F-S .05* .15 .40 Study Aids -.01 .95 F-21.90 J-22.80 S-21.27 NS .07* .67 Self Testing .23 .18 F-17.50 J-19.82 S-20.73 NS -.04 .81 Test Strategies .25 .15 F-23.30 NS .24 .15 J-25.00 S-26.64 *significant at .05 level

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Table 9~continued Pretest Mean Sex p-value Race Mean p-value Attitude F-30.50 M-24.58 .01* AA-27.41 C-25.16 .31 Motivation F-27.70 M-23.65 .10 AA-25.64 W-24.00 .48 Time Management F-20.60 M-20.77 .94 AA-21.47 C-20.05 .44 Anxiety with School F-22.30 M-26.31 .09 AA-26.47 C-24.05 .27 Concentration F-17.70 M-22.12 .10 AA-23.18 C-18.84 .06 Information Processing F-23.70 M-23.65 .98 AA-23.53 C-23.79 .90 Selecting the Main Idea F-15.30 M-14.50 .55 AA16.65 C-13.00 .002* Study Aids F-24.60 M-21.12 .13 AA-21.88 C-22.26 .86 Self Testing F-21.70 M-18.73 .23 AA-20.06 C-19.11 .66 Testing Strategies F-24.40 .72 AA-26.00 .39 M-25.27 C-24.16 * significant at .05 level

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63 Post Intervention Analysis To determine the effectiveness of the expHcit instruction intervention, a series of ANCOVA procedures were performed. In each ANCOVA, the end of the semester measure was regressed on the factors of group and baseline measure. This section provides an explanation of the results from the tests of hypotheses related to each of the four constraints. Self-determination . Hypothesis 1 stated that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention self-determination scores between the control group and the •it expenmental group. The Self-Determination Student Scale was used to assess the participant's level of self-determination. This measure provides an overall selfdetermination score and five subtest scores: Knowing Yourself, Valuing Yourself, Planning, Act, and Experience Outcomes and Learn. The results of the ANCOVA performed on the self-determination measures indicate no significant difference between the groups for any of the self-determination measures (p< .05). Table 10 provides the mean differences for each group. From these results, it can be concluded that Hypothesis 1 cannot be rejected. Advocating. Hypothesis 2 states that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group. The results from the ANCOVA performed on the advocating scores demonstrated a significant difference between the experimental group and the control group (p<.01). Table 1 1 provides the mean differences for each of the groups. The existence of a significant difference between the two groups means that Hypothesis 2 can be rejected.

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64 The advocating interview scores were analyzed further to determine the areas of greatest improvement. The results of these analyses are discussed in the next section of this chapter. Table 10 Self-Determination ANCOVA Results Pretest Difference Scores Class Mean. Control Mean ANCOVA P-Value Overall Self-determination -3.73 -3.26 .70 Knowing Yourself .53 -.68 .25 Valuing Yourself -1.00 -.11 .11 Planning -.73 -.53 .46 Act -1.47 -1.16 .58 Experience Outcomes and Learn -1.07 -.84 .63 Table 1 1 Advocating ANCOVA Results Pretest Difference Scores ANCOVA Class Mean. Control Mean P-Value Advocating Interview *c;^:c.^ — „ nc 1 1 3.23 -.42 .01* * Significant at .05 level Anxiety. Hypothesis 3 states that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group. No significant difference was found between the anxiety measures, state or trait, of the two groups (p< .05). Table 12 provides the mean differences for each of the groups. i These results indicate that Hypothesis 3 cannot be rejected.

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65 Table 12 Anxiety ANCOVA Results Pretest Difference Scores ANCOVA Class Mean. Control Mean P-Value State Anxiety -2.93 2.47 .31 Trait Anxiety .47 -.37 .49 Study Skills . Hypothesis 4 states that there will be no significant difference in the post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. No significant difference was found between the two groups on any of the study skills measures (p < .05). Table 13 provides the mean differences for each of the groups. Therefore, Hypothesis 4 cannot be rejected. Further Analysis Self-determination . Interestingly, both the experimental and control groups had a self-determination mean pretest score well above the reported norm mean score. The mean score reported for this measure was 3 1 . The experimental and control groups' mean pretest scores were 71.75 and 76.45, respectively. The subtest scores were also higher than the reported norm mean scores. In order to better understand the self-determination data, an item analysis was completed for all 92 items. Due to the categorical nature of the data, the Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel test was used. Each question has four possibilities or categories. The participant could have answered incorrectly on the pretest and incorrectly on the posttest (I-I), incorrectly on the pretest and correctly on the posttest (I-C), correctly on the pretest and incorrectly on the posttest (C-I), or correctly on the pretest

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66 and correctly on the posttest (C-C). The percentage of the students in each group who fell into each category was analyzed to determine whether the groups differed significantly on each question and to see if there was a pattern among the participants in the way they answered the questions. Table 13 Study Skills ANCOVA Results Pretest Difference Scores ANCOVA Class Mean Control Mean P-Value Attitude 1.27 2.00 .49 Motivation 3.07 1.00 .91 Time Management 2.07 -2.21 .09 Anxiety with School -1.80 .89 .13 Concentration 2.87 -.16 .65 Information Processing 3.20 1.37 .82 Selecting the Main Idea .73 .53 .64 Study Aids 2.27 1.26 .99 Self Testing 2.07 1.42 .53 Testing Strategies -.33 0.00 .40 The groups did not differ significantly in how they answered most of the questions and only four out of the 92 were significant. In a few cases, the lack of different answers made the test of significance impossible. These four questions and all of the questions scoring above 75% or below 60% in the correct-correct category were further examined. These additional analyses were conducted to determine if any explanations could be formulated about why the self-determination scores were so high for these participants.

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67 The item analysis did provide some interesting information. The groups only differed significantly on four of the 92 questions: Question #41, before I do something, I think about what might happen; Question # 62, 1 could not describe my strengths and weaknesses in school. Question # 69, 1 give in when I have differences with others.; and Question #71,1 tell my friends what I want to do when we go out. In questions 41 and 71, more of the control group's students answered correctly on the pretest and correctly on the posttest than the experimental group's students. On those same questions more than half of the experimental group's students who answered incorrectly on the pretest answered correctly on the posttest. On questions 62 and 69, both of the groups had almost equal rates of answering correctly on the pretest and posttest. The students in the control group also had a higher rate of going from correct answers on the pretest to incorrect answers on the posttest for both of those questions. The students in the experimental group had a higher rate of answering incorrectly on the pretest and incorrectly on the posttest for question 69; however, on question 62 they went from answering incorrectly on the pretest to answering correctly on the posttest. Another interesting pattern was that over 50% of the students answered 69 out of 92 questions in a correct-correct pattern. This reflects in their above-average selfdetermination scores. Many of the questions on this study are not related directly to school and thus the participants in this study, who were all student-athletes, could associate them with other parts of their lives. The 40-point difference in initial mean scores between this group and the norms given indicate that student-athletes with learning disabilities maybe significantly different from other students with learning disabilities.

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68 This concept is explored further in the next chapter. See Appendix E for the complete item analysis. Despite the lack of statistical significance, two subtests of the self-determination score presented patterns that warranted closer examination. The mean difference scores of the Knowing Yourself and the Valuing Yourself subtests were graphed (see Figure 8). As Figure 8 depicts, the experimental group's (class) score increased in the Knowing Yourself area while the control group's score went down in this area. Conversely, the experimental group's Valuing Yourself score dropped more than the control's. The journals and offered more evidence to support the increase in the Knowing Yourself trend. In the journals, three fourths of the students reported learning more about themselves and their learning disability. The lowering of self-esteem was more surprising, because the students were openly participating and sharing experiences about having a learning disability and how others have acted towards them. How the students felt in this classroom full of individuals with learning disabilities might be different than how they feel about dealing with others who don't have a learning disability. Further possible implications and meanings of these trends will be addressed in Chapter 5. Advocating. In order to determine what areas of the advocating interview improved the most, an item analysis was conducted on the advocating interview data. A Wilcoxon Rank Sum test was performed to analyze these data. Each of the areas on the advocating interview score sheet was included in this test. Table 14 provides the mean difference scores for both groups and the level of significance for each scoring area. There was a significant difference between the groups in the areas of voice tone, posture, and

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69 0.8 0.6 0.4 0.2 Knowing Yourself Valuing Yourself Control Class Figure 8. Knowing and Valuing Yourself Trends explaining one's learning disability (p< .04, .05, and .03, respectively). Although only three areas reach significance, the experimental group increased in 10 out of the 15 areas. Anxiety . The state anxiety change scores for each of the participants were graphed to provide more information (see Figure 9). The graph provides visual evidence that the majority of the participants in the experimental group's state anxiety measures did decrease. Interestingly, the two participants in the experimental group with the highest increase in anxiety were seniors, who were less than a week from graduation and who had more absences than the others in that group. The participants in the control group had state anxiety scores that varied considerably. The graph indicates that state anxiety may

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70 have been affected by the intervention but this was not a statistically significant result at the .05 level of significance. These results are discussed further in Chapter 5. Table 14 Advocating Item Analysis Item Name Difference Scores Wilcoxon Class Mean Control Mean p-value Eye Contact .13 .18 .93 Volume .57 .18 .12 Voice Tone .53 .16 .04* Posture .40 .00 .05* Introduces Oneself .17 -.45 .11 Explains Learning Disability .73 .00 .03* Indicates Strengths -.08 -.07 .45 Indicates Weakness .33 -.05 .12 Requests Accommodations .27 -.24 .14 Justifies Accommodations .23 -.03 .39 External Supports -.37 -.18 .43 Asks About Services -.03 .00 .29 Requests Contact Person .00 .00 1.00 Appropriate Closing .10 .03 .83 Speaks in Complete Sentences .23 .11 .30 * Significant at .05 level I o 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 -5 -10 -15 -20 — H n 1 + IIControl Figure 9. Changes in Anxiety Scores Change in Student Scores Class

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71 Study skills . Although no statistically significant differences were found between the two groups in any of the 10 study skills areas, two significant trends were discovered in the areas of Time Management and Anxiety with School. These trends are displayed in Figure 10. The class increased in time management skills while the control group decreased (p < .09). The students in the class increased in their understanding of how important it is to plan their time because having a learning disability often results in : • needing more time to accomplish a task. The class did, however, decrease in its anxiety score. Unlike the previous anxiety measure a decrease in score in this test means and increase in anxiety. The difference here could stem from the fact that the questions on this anxiety measure focus on negative self-talk and self-awareness. Some sample items are " I am very tense when I study" and "Worrying about doing poorly interferes with my concentration on tests." The anxiety score in this measure seems more in line with the Knowing Yourself and Valuing Yourself trends discussed earlier. The students in the class knew more about themselves, even negative things, and that didn't translate into all positive feelings. The importance of these findings will be discussed further in Chapter 5. Between-Test Correlations The relationship between some of the areas being measured warranted investigation. The Spearman Correlation tests were run to see if any correlations existed between state anxiety scores, trait anxiety scores, advocating scores, and knowing yourself scores. These correlations were run on pretest scores, posttest scores, within groups, and on the whole group of participants.

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72 2.5 2 1.5 1 Time Management Anxiety with School Control Class Figure 10. Study Skills Trends Whole group pretest correlations . On the pretests, a significant positive correlation was found (r =.49, p<.002) between the advocating score and the knowing yourself score. A significant positive correlation (r =.71, p<.0001) was also reported between the trait and state anxiety measures. Significant negative correlations were found between advocating and both trah (r = -.35, p< .04) and state (r = -.39, p<.02, respectively) anxiety measures. A negative correlation was also found to exist between Knowing Yourself and both trait (r = -.58, p<.0002) and state (r = -.42, p<.01) anxiety measures. Whole gro up posttest correlations. Different correlations were found at posttesting. Advocating no longer correlated significantly with any of the other measures.

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73 However, state anxiety and advocating had a nearly significant trend (r = -.30, p<.08). Trait and state anxiety still had a significant positive correlation (r = .65, p<.0001) with each other. The significant negative correlation between state anxiety and Knowing Yourself (r = .39, p<.02 ) still existed. Experimental group pretest correlations. The experimental group had three strong correlations. There was a significant positive correlation (r = .62, p<.01) between advocating and knowing yourself. There was also a significant positive correlation (r .69, p<.003) between state and trait anxiety scores. The final correlation found within the experimental group pretest scores was a negative correlation (r =-.48, p.>06) between trait anxiety and knowing yourself. Control group pretest correlations . The control group's pretest scores revealed some new significant correlations. The significant positive correlation (r = .83, p<.0001) between state and trait anxiety still existed. No other significant positive correlations were found with in this group. Significant negative correlations were found, however, between advocating and trait anxiety (r = -.47, p<.04) and between knowing yourself and both trait (r = -.61, p<.004) and state (r = -.55, p<.01) anxiety. Experimen tal group posttest correlations. Only one significant correlation was found in within the experimental group's posttest. There was a positive correlation (r = .54, p<.04) between trait and state anxiety scores at a level. Control group posttest correlations. A significant positive correlation (r = .68, p<.001) was discovered between the state and trait anxiety scores. Knowing Yourself was found to have a significant negative correlation with both trait (r = -.57, p<.01) and state(r

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74 = -.53, p<.02) anxiety. No other significant correlations were found. The significant correlation found between state and trait anxiety on each of the tests was as expected. State and trait anxiety are correlated and, had these tests not demonstrated that relationship, the results would be questioned. A person's overall anxiety disposition affects and helps predict his/her level of anxiety in specific situations. Journal Themes From a review of the students' journals, a few constant themes could be found. Approximately, three quarters of the students reported that they learned about themselves and how to advocate. The brainstorming accommodations activity was beneficial and enjoyed by 13 of the 15 students. A majority of the students reported being able to relate to classmates' comments and experiences, along with those of the people in the videotapes watched in class. This seemed to make them feel more comfortable with their disabilities. Almost all of the students reported that they liked working in groups and that it helped them pay more attention. Learning about the laws made the students feel empowered, according to half of the students. The students found both the modality unit and the computer learning styles inventory useful, but they felt that the computer learning style inventory needed to be more specific. Finally, the students thought that they needed to spend more time role-playing with an instructor rather than with peers. Only one student was unable to find anything useful about the course. In general all of the journals reflected the positive comments the students had shared in class.

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75 Summary Chapter 4 provided the resuhs of the statistical analyses performed on the preand posttest data from the self-determination intervention. Only Hypothesis 2 (there will be no significant difference in the advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group) could be rejected based on the results of the ANCOVAs performed. Further analysis of some tests was done to determine if patterns or trends among the data collected could be found. Trends in the scores in the self-determination subtests of Knowing Yourself and Valuing Yourself were presented in this chapter and are discussed further in Chapter 5, along with the supporting data from the study skills measures. An item analysis on the self-determination measure and the advocating measure were also performed and reported in this chapter. The state anxiety scores were presented in graph form, so trends could be examined. The data were also examined to determine if correlations existed between advocating, trait anxiety, state anxiety, and knowing yourself scores. The relevance of all of these findings for post-secondary students with learning disabilities, professionals in the field, and future research is presented in Chapter 5.

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CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION Introduction The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of explicit instruction of self-determination skills on post-secondary students with learning disabilities. Chapter 5 provides a brief overview of the study, including a summary of the literature review and the procedures used. This overview is followed by an in-depth discussion, which includes a brief review of the resuhs for each hypothesis, implications for the profession, and directions of future research. Overview of Study Review of the Literature Research has demonstrated that, despite efforts to develop self-determination in students with LD at the secondary level, post-secondary students with LD typically do not demonstrate self-determined behavior (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Brinckerhoff, 1996; Brinckerhoff et al., 1992; Cullen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997). In particular, many college students with LD do not have effective skills for communicating about their learning disabilities and accommodation needs (Benham, 1997; Brmckerhoff et al.; Cullen et al.; Day & Edwards, 1996; Greenbaum et al.; Kroeger & Aune; Norton; Vogel et al., 1998; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993). 76

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77 After interviewing 107 college students with LD, Vogel et al. (1993) reported that most students had limited self-awareness or knowledge about their learning disabilities. Because the number of students with LD choosing to attend post-secondary institutions is rapidly growing (Blackorby & Wagnor, 1996), the need to increase self-determination among post-secondary students with LD is crucial. The laws that govern services provided at the post-secondary level require postsecondary students with LD to act in a self-determined manner, yet they are often stirrounded by individuals who know little or nothing about learning disabilities. This requires that students with LD must be equipped to educate others about learning disabilities. Students who lack self-determination are unprepared to meet these demands and are often left with high levels of anxiety, little self-confidence, and low self-esteem. Professionals have had some success in teaching self-determination skills to secondary students (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak, 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996a, Van Reusen & Bos, 1990). Determining the best method for building on the success of self-determination instruction with secondary students and tailoring it to the needs of students with LD at the post-secondary level is the focus of this dissertation. Methods This study was designed to test the effects of a one-semester course on the selfdetermination, self-advocacy, anxiety, and study skills on post-secondary students with LD To test these effects a pretest-posttest design was employed. Two groups, experimental and control, were used in the study. ' '

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78 Study participants. The participants in this study were thirty-six college studentathletes with learning disabilities. The participants were randomly assigned to the experimental and control groups. The experimental group had 16 students, but one student withdrew before the end of the study. The control group had 20 students, but one student from this group also chose not to continue in the study. Study procedures . The participants individually took a pretest on selfdetermination and study skills. An anxiety pretest was taken immediately prior to the advocating interview. The advocating interviews were then scored by two independent raters. After the pretesting was completed, the experimental group participated in a semester-long course on self-determination. Following the intervention, the participants took the self-determination and study skills tests again. They also took the anxiety measures again immediately before participating in the advocating interview. Comparisons of the groups were conducted using a series of ANCOVAs with pretests as the covariates. Additional tests were performed (i.e., correlation and item analysis) in an effort to understand more fully the effects of the intervention. Discussion of Results Review of Results The results of this study have two main limitations. The first limitation is the size of the groups. The groups were sufficient but small. The number of members in each group makes the average scores susceptible to extreme scores. To strengthen the fmdings of this study, replication of this study is recommended.

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79 The second limitation is the fact that all of the participants in this study were student-athletes. The uniqueness of the student-athlete with a learning disability was a factor in this study. This is most evident in the self-determination score. The studentathlete with a learning disability is unique for many reasons (Lane et al., in press). Student-athletes with learning disabilities have had successfiil experiences in the athletic arena that have created a frame of reference that is significantly different than other students with learning disabilities. These two limitations must be considered when interpreting the resuhs, implications, and future research directions derived from this Study. ' ' • This study had four main hypotheses. In this section, each hypothesis is reviewed and the results of the analyses are discussed and interpreted. Hi: There will be no difference in post intervention determination between the control group and the experimental group. H2: There will be no difference in post intervention advocating scores between the control group and the experimental group. H3: There will be no difference in post intervention anxiety scores between the control group and the experimental group. H4: There will be no difference in post intervention study skills scores between the control group and the experimental group. The ANCOVA results for hypothesis 2 (advocating) demonstrated a significant difference between the experimental and the control groups. Hypothesis 2 can, therefore, be rejected. The analysis of the other three hypotheses did not yield significant differences

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80 and HI, H3, and H4 cannot be rejected. However, further analysis did reveal relevant information in each of the domains. Self-determination . A lack of significant difference between the groups on the selfdetermination measure may be related to the high self-determination scores among the participants. The average scores for both groups were 40 points above the norm average. The room for growth, therefore, was limited. The Self-Determination Scale for Students may not be appropriate for this population. Population in this instance refers to postsecondary student-athletes with learning disabilities not post-secondary students with learning disabilities in general. In both groups, 75% of the participants scored correctly on the same questions on the pretest and posttest for 30 of the questions. The item analysis revealed that many of these questions were not directly related to school. This allowed participants to apply the question to any area of their life. Because all of the participants were highly successful, self-determined athletes, it is likely that they related the questions to the athletic domain rather than the academic domain. For example, question seven states "There are no interesting possibilities in my future", and question 51 states "I imagine myself being successful." For any college student-athlete, these questions may be related to athletics and answered in a positive manner. At first glance, question 43 ("I know what grades I am working toward in my classes") might appear more appropriate, but all student-athletes know what grades are required to stay eligible for athletic competition. The majority of participants in this study, as reported by their academic counselors and tutors, have not displayed self-determined behavior relating to academic domain. For this reason the high self-determination scores may be misleading.

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81 Trends (see Figure 8) did reveal that the experimental group increased in the Knowing Yourself subset of self-determination while the control group decreased slightly. Increases in the Knowing Yourself area of self-determination after the intervention of explicitly teaching of self-determination skills supports previous results from the literature (Carpenter, 1995; Durlak, 1994; Field & Hoffman, 1996a; Van Reusen & Bos, 1990) on teaching secondary students to be self-determined. Students' knowledge about their leammg disabilities can be increased through explicit instruction. The students' journals reported that the students were learning more about themselves and their learning disabilities. Twelve of the 15 journals contained at least one statement reflecting thoughts such as "I am learning a lot about myself and "I am learning what a learning disability is." The increase in Time Management scores and the decrease in Anxiety with School scores also support the belief that explicit instruction in self-determination skills can increase knowledge about one's learning disability. In the case of the decrease in the Anxiety with School score, it is demonstrated that learning more about oneself does not always immediately lead to positive thoughts. The other trend noted in the results that helps to illustrate this point is the decline in the Valuing Yourself score among the experimental group. No journal comments reflected this decline in self-value. This finding does not support previous findings that self-esteem is also raised during the explicit instruction of self-determination skills (Carpenter, 1995; Field & Hoffman, 1996a). However, the Field and Hoffman study was -1 . . conducted with secondary students and specifically used their "Steps to SelfDetermination" curriculum. Carpenter used a self-concept measure to determine increases

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82 in self-esteem, not a self-determination scale. Many of the post-secondary students with LD have never really understood the various aspects of having a learning disability, especially those diagnosed after entering college. Initially, finding out how a learning disability might affect one's life can be overwhelming and disheartening. It may take longer to come to terms emotionally with having a learning disability and then focus on what one can do instead of what one has trouble doing. The major concern about the declining trend in the Valuing Yourself area is that the research also reports a low use of psychological counseling among individuals with learning disabilities (Brier, 1994; Gregg et al., 1992; Malian & Love, 1998; Rosenthal, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993). A greater incorporation of counseling into the post-secondary self-determination course might be necessary. Advocating . The significant increase in the self-advocacy skills of the participants in the experimental group after the intervention is the most important finding of this study. Researchers in this field have demonstrated clearly that the lack of ability to communicate about their learning disabilities is the leading barrier to success for postsecondary students with LD (Aune & Kroeger, 1997; Benham, 1997; Brinckerhoff, et al., 1992; CuUen et al., 1996; Greenbaum et al., 1995; Norton, 1997; Vogel et al., 1998; Vogel & Adelman, 1992; Vogel et al., 1993). The same researchers have also found that postsecondary students with LD must be able to communicate about their learning disabilities, because so many of the people they encounter have limited or no knowledge about learning disabilities. The item analysis on the advocating interview revealed that students did increase significantly in their ability to explain their learning disabilities. Other areas of

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83 their advocating abilities still need improvement, such as requesting and justifying accommodations, asking about services, and requesting contact information. The student journals provided an important insight on how to improve the advocating training. In eight of the fifteen journals, the students indicated that they would have preferred to practice advocating with the instructor rather than with classmates. The students felt that they did not take the advocating role-playing seriously enough when just practicing with each other. • « • Anxiety . The difference in state and trait anxiety scores did not reach significance. The changes in the state anxiety scores of the control group were variable, but 12 of the 16 participants in the experimental group had decreasing scores. One of the students in the experimental group with an increase in anxiety had only a slight increase. The two largest increases in state anxiety were recorded for two seniors in the experimental group. It is important to note that both of these students were graduating the week of , • • posttesting and were preparing to try out for professional football teams. These outside circumstances may have affected their anxiety scores. The final student with an increase in anxiety was the one student who repeatedly (in class on the advocating interview and in the journal) stated a disbelief in learning disabilities. This participant displayed a negative attitude throughout the study. Due to the small number of participants, getting significant results is highly sensitive. The scores of these three students could have kept the state anxiety results from being significant even though the intervention was effective in decreasing state anxiety.

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84 Study skills . There was no significant difference between the experimental and control groups in any of the study skills areas. Study skills were not directly taught in the intervention class. The results indicate that explicit instruction of self-determination does not automatically resuh in a student having or developing better study skills. Direct instruction of study skills is probably necessary. Implications for the Profession The field of post-secondary learning disabilities is young and growing. Researchers and practitioners who work with college students with LD face the challenge of developing effective practices with limited information about what does and does not work. This study contributes to the knowledge base that informs these researchers and professionals. Teaching self-determination . Teaching self-determination skills to post-secondary students with LD is important. This study demonstrated that post-secondary students with LD may increase their self-advocacy skills through explicit instruction of selfdetermination. Professionals who provide services for post-secondary students with LD should consider offering a course in self-determination and self-advocacy. This course could be offered through the campus office for students with disabilities or through the special education department, if one exists on campus. These offices may want to ' consider collaborating with their athletic association or department to make the most of the available resources. Being an effective self-advocate is essential to the success of postsecondary students with disabilities, and professionals in the field need to take a more proactive role to assure students have these necessary skills.

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85 Clearly, teaching students about their learning disabilities in a one-semester course is not enough. Providing adequate counseling services for post-secondary students with LD, especially those diagnosed after entering the post-secondary setting, is extremely important. Increasing knowledge about learning disabilities may increase self-doubts and led to lower self-esteem. Providing adequate counseling services by counselors who are knowledgeable about learning disabilities is important. Continuing to provide support after educating individuals about their learning disabilities should be another area of focus for post-secondary service providers. High levels of anxiety can lead to a perceived lack of control and loss of commitment, which can hinder the development of some of the traits associated with successftil adults with learning disabilities (e.g., control over one's life, desire to succeed, and persistence). Another possible outcome of lowering selfvalue is depression. Providing the appropriate counseling services can reduce the risks of full-blown and long-term depression. This is true as well for individuals whose post-secondary setting is the workplace, not college. Professionals working with adults who have learning disabilities should be aware of the psychosocial difficuhies, such as depression, that might develop as individuals with learning disabilities face the demands of their new environments. Secondary school professionals who teach self-determination should ensure that their programs produce students who are able to self-advocate to individuals who have limited or no knowledge about leaming disabilities. Advocating can be fostered through explicit instruction and role-playing. Initial role-playing with peers should lead to roleplaying with adults, specifically authority figures. .: . •

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86 Student-athletes . The use of student-athletes as the participants in this study has presented some interesting implications. Professionals who work with student-athletes with LD should be aware of the ways being a successful athlete can mask problems that may lead to being an imsuccessful adult. Because the student-athlete possesses certain personality traits in one area, it may be incorrectly assumed that those traits occur in all areas. The inflated self-determination scores of these participants is a good example of how students can be self-determined in one area (sports) and, therefore, appear selfdetermined on tests of self-determination, but not act in a self-determined manner with regard to academics. Professionals who work with postsecondary student-athletes with LD need methods to help their students transfer some of the positive behaviors seen on the athletic field into the classroom and other areas of life. Post-secondary student-athletes with LD may have an advantage over other postsecondary students with LD. These student-athletes have an area of life in which they have been self-determined. Many of the components of self-determination are taught to student-athletes as part of their training. Methods for analyzing strengths and weaknesses, being effective goal setters, having higher levels of self-confidence and selfefficacy are all emphasized and researched in athletics. Researchers have found these components to be important to athletic success. The researchers have examined the relationship of these components to athletic success and developed effective methods of instruction of these skills as they relate to athletics (Chung & Elias, 1996; Kingston & Hardy; 1997; Martin &. Gill, 1991; Mathieu, Martineau, & Tannenbaum; 1993; Pierce «& Burton, 1998).

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87 Chung and Elias (1996) examined the relationship between adolescent problem behaviors and self-efFicacy, social competence and life events. They found students who participated in sports and non-sports activities displayed fewer problems behaviors, had higher self-efficacy and social competence, and experienced more positive life events. Participation in school related activities can be linked to positive results in other areas of life. Professionals dealing with students with learning disabilities need find ways to help these students transfer the behaviors and skills they have learned (i.e., self-efficacy and goal setting) in other arenas into the classroom. Professionals might also steer students with learning disabiUties toward participation in extra-curricular activities. Any areas of interest and talent, not just sports, should be strongly encouraged and developed. Transferrmg components of self-determination learned outside the classroom might be easier than trying to develop self-determination in students who have not experienced it at aU. Future Research More research in the area of teaching self-determination and self-advocacy skills to post-secondary students with learning disabilities needs to take place. The number of participants in this study was small, so replication of the study with adaptations would be appropriate. Increasing the length of the intervention and including more in-depth learning m the areas of self-esteem, planning, evaluating, and study skills may be appropriate. Other components of the course could be altered based on the results and experience. Increasing the number of individual meetings so more time can be spent on evaluating each student's individual strengths, helping them capitalize on their strengths.

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88 and helping them choose the most appropriate study strategies. More group activities are recommended, as well. The students' level of participation increased during group activities, and they held each other accountable. Having a learning disability was no excuse in these groups. Finally, having the students advocate with other adults, familiar and unfamiliar to them, should be increased. Interventions that may improve self-esteem among post-secondary students with LD while at the same time increase knowledge among individuals outside the field of special education are needed. A study that has post-secondary students with LD providing training in learning disabilities to professionals outside of the field might accomplish both of those goals. Students would gain self-esteem and self-confidence by becoming the experts and sharing that knowledge with others, especially those usually • seen as authority figures. Longitudinal studies are needed to determine if the secondary curricula used to teach self-determination in secondary schools produce self-determined students at the post-secondary level. If these curricula are only producing students who can act in a selfdetermined manner in a secondary setting, additional instruction will be necessary to promote self-determination in the post-secondary setting. These studies would also provide information on whether or not self-determination is subjector situation-specific. The skills necessary to be self-determined may be situation-specific and may require continuous instruction and modification to promote generalization to other situations. Research into the generalization of skills mastered in one area of life to another has demonstrated than generalization is difficult, and seldom automatic for individuals with a

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89 disability (Stokes & Baer, 1977). However, transferring a skill from one area to another is easier than learning a skill that is unknown. Researchers need to examine the uniqueness of individuals with learning disabilities who have strong talents in other areas. Can their experiences in their areas of talent be used to teach more efficiently and effectively skills such as self-determination? A student with high levels of interest or talent in an area outside of school might be taught to be a better advocate by first advocating or educating others on the area of interest of the individual with LD. These ideas need to be developed and examined by researchers in the field of learning disabilities in order for individuals with LD to meet the challenges of post-secondary life. Development of appropriate self-determination measures for individuals at the post-secondary level needs to be undertaken. Most of the tests available are specific to lEP meetings and other topics found in secondary settings. Researchers have begun to examine self-determination in the post-secondary setting. The validity of the measures with the post-secondary population needs to be examined. Finally, researchers have begun to consider the uniqueness of post-secondary student-athletes with learning disabilities. The unique characteristics of student-athletes with learning disabilities and how those characteristics can influence academic performance, positively and negatively, warrant further research. The similarities and differences between student-athletes with learning disabilities and nonstudent-athletes with learning disabilities needs to be better defined. Norms for this group on test instruments already normed for students with disabilities may need to be established.

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90 Summary This study has examined the effects of explicit instruction on the selfdetermination, advocating abilities, anxiety, and study skills of post-secondary students with learning disabilities. The students' abilities to advocate and communicate about their learning disabilities were significantly increased through the explicit instruction of selfdetermination skills. Professionals should ensure that students with learning disabilities are being instructed in the self-determination skills that will make them successful after leaving the secondary setting. More research into the area of self-determination and postsecondary students with learning disabilities is needed.

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APPENDIX A COURSE SYLLABUS

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Personal Learning Styles Syllabus EEX 4905 Section 0222 Instructor: Sharon L. Blatz Text: • Help yourself: How to take advantage of your learning styles by Gail Murphy Sonbuchner • Learning Disabilities: A student handbook by Susan Vogel Materials: • Planner calendar of daily activities • Portfolio expanding folder • Journal Bound notebook Objectives: • Teach the meaning of learning disability. • Increase a student's understanding of his/her personal learning disability. • Inform students of their rights pertaining to having a disability. • Increase a student's ability to effectively communicate about his/her learning disabilities. • Teach the students how to set both long term and short term goals. • Teach the students how to effectively plan and evaluate their progress. • Demonstrate the need for self-determination skills in becoming a successful adult. Content: The class will cover the following topics. • The LD Vocabulary • Successful Adult Literature • Defining Learning Disabilities • Manifestations of Learning Disabilities • Learning and Personality Styles • Accommodations • Legal Rights and Responsibilities • Goal Setting • Self-Advocating 92

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93 • Communication Styles The students will also be asked to use a planner throughout the semester and keep a journal of their thoughts and feelings about the course activities. Outside of Class Activities: • The students will be required to self-advocate with one person outside of the class. • The students will create and maintain a personal profile portfolio. • The students will individually meet with the instructor on two occasions to discuss individual LD manifestations. Grades: This class is 3 credits and has only two grade options Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory A grade of satisfactory will be given to students who meet the following criteria: • Complete and turn in their personal portfolios • Complete all out of class activities • Turn in a Journal • Have no more than unexcused 2 absences

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Agenda: Date Topic/ Activity Jan. 11 Introduction/Personal LD history /Famous people/glossary Jan. 13 Successful people (articles & activities)/Successflil advocates Jan. 18 LD definition (group project and presentations) Jan. 20 Complete presentations Jan. 21 FAT City Video Jan. 25 video review/never say never game(disability sensitivity) Jan. 27 Knowledge check/LD Unit (group)-manifestations of LD Jan. 28 Complete LD Unit Feb. 1 Knowledge check/Review psychological tests Feb. 3 Complete testing/Multiple intelligence Feb. 4 Learning Styles Inventory Feb. 8 Meyers Briggs Feb. 10 Modality Feb. 15 Modality continued Feb. 17 Expert modality Feb. 22 Academic accommodations Feb. 24 Academic accommodations/Student fact sheet Feb. 29 Strategies Mar. 2 LD college student handbook/laws Mar. 14 Laws/Rights and responsibilities Mar. 16 Help Video Mar. 21 Video review/goal setting Mar. 23 Goal setting/short and long term goals . ; ^

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95 Mar. 28 Plan, act, & evaluate goals(individual goal project assigned) Mar. 30 Self-advocating (meaning)/information sheet Apr. 4 Scripts/comment sheets (pair practice) Apr. 6 Assertive, passive, aggressive communication/love game Apr. 11 Role playing (advocacy )/goal project progress check Apr. 13 Role playing (advocacy) Apr. 18 Knowledge check (self-advocacy) ; , . i' j
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APPENDIX B SUMMARY OF INSTRUCTOR'S DAILY DIARY

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Diary Summary Date Objectives and Activities Comments Jan. 1 1 0-Assess current knowledge of LD and provide semester overview. A-Peer interviews, completing personal cards, and each student shared his/her definition of LD with class. Class went as well as any other class on the first day. Students came in late and only 12 of the 16 were present. *Concemed about having to meet in different rooms each day. Jan. 13 0-Understand that individuals with disabilities lead successful lives and identifv successful adults with disabilities A-As a class we reviewed the successful/famous people with disabilities list. The students completed matching activity and than we came together as a class to go over it. Most students commented on this being a positive activity. Late students caused us to review a few times. Only 10 out of 16 found today's room. Two of the students have not made it to either room. J an. 18 0-Identify traits and behaviors linked to successful adults with disabilities. AClass brainstormed what they thought were successful behaviors. Students broke into small groups and each group read a different research article about successful adults with disabilities. They group picked out the traits associated with success and shared them with the whole class. Shifting rooms is still causing problems. We start late and only 1 2 out of the 1 6 got to class today. 1 don't know if the room is the problem or they are using it as an excuse. We have been in three different rooms. Some of the students had a hard time reading the research article. Next time I might just provide summaries with the articles or highlight the important parts. Jan. 20 0-Identify traits and behaviors linked to successful adults with disabilities. Identify successful traits you posses. A-Review of previous class. Comprised list on board of successful traits. Students raised their hands to indicated behaviors they possessed. We kept a tally on the board. Class discussed why they felt they had a particular behavior and what behaviors as a class we needed to focus on. Another class was in our room today so we had to move to another classroom. Only 8 out of 16 students were present by the end of class Thf *;tiiH£*iit^ nrt^^put wprp vprv honest about their feelings and what skills they thought they should work on. Small group may have benefited the activity. 1 might consider a silent voting method next time. Jan. 21 0-Define learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. A-Students were given directions for group presentations. The students in groups of four had to create a presentation on what a learning disability is and how it affects your life. We will be watching movies and completing worksheets in order to gain the necessary information. Today we watched the Post-Secondary Transition video and completed a worksheet about the video. The video seem to be a good choice. A few students commented on how they could relate to the students in the video and how they have tried or might try some of the strategies the students in the video talked about. This was a good day despite only 1 1 out of the 16 students made it to class and 3 were really late. 1 have inquired at the Office of Student Life about using one of their rooms. 97

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98 Jan. 25 0Define learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. A-Continued gathering presentation information. The class was started by doing the perception activities from the F.A. T. City video. The class than watched the FAT City Video. We stopped periodically to talk about the points being made. The students could relate to some of the issues brought out on the video but many were bothered by the presentation. They felt that the instructor was annoying, frustrating, and moving too fast. If normal is too fast for many of them to process a man going twice as fast to make a point is probably overwhelming. Only 10 out of 16 today. Jan. 27 • 0Define learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. A-Finished F.A. T. City video. The Office of Student Life got the class a room in the Academic Advisement Center. This should help the attendance problems. The student were getting fidgety towards the end of the video. In the future I might only show selected parts of the video. Jan. 28 0Define learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. A-The class went over the LD definition given in the "Become Your Own Expert" curriculum. Than the student worked in groups to complete the LD unit from the same curriculum. The students worked hard in their groups and asked good questions. Most of the students are coming. I have only two students that are a problem. I will talk to their counselors. Feb. 1 0Define learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. A-Students worked in groups to create their presentations. The students had the opportunity to do any type of presentation-posters, video, skits, & etc. All of the groups seem to be doing a skit. One of the two missing students came to class. I will meet with him independently to catch him up. Feb. 3 0Defme learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. AStudents worked in groups to create their presentations. Students worked well today. Only one missing student. Feb. 4 0Define learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. AStudents worked in groups to create their presentations. Students were a little fidgety today. I might have given them too much freedom. They seem to be getting off-task a bit and quite a few were missing. Feb. 8 0Defme learning disability. Identify how a learning disability can affect one's life. A-Student's gave presentations in class today. The other groups provided feedback on the presentations. The presentations varied in quality. One group did the Jerry Springer Show it was very good and they were all very open about how having a learning disability has affected them in school and emotionally. All of the groups were able to give a basic definition of a learning disability and give examples of how it can affected lives. They really enjoyed giving each other feedback.

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99 Feb. 10 0-Name laws, rights and responsibilities associated with disabilities. A-As a class we read through the sections of the College Student with Disabilities Handbook that related to laws, rights, and responsibilities. On going discussion was encouraged. 1 might try to make this more interactive next time the students participated in the discussion but we had to stop at one point and move around because people seemed to be unfocused. The students were, however, commenting on how surprised they were that they are actually laws that protect their rights. Feb. 15 0Name laws, rights and responsibilities associated with disabilities. A-Students worked in groups to find the answers to questions about the laws, rights, and responsibilities read about last class. After the groups completed the sheets we went over the answers as a class. Attendance is still good. The one missing student is dropping out of the class. The students asked a lot of clarifying questions and liked being able to work on the sheet in groups. Feb. 17 0-Define accommodations. List possible accommodations. AWe used the "Becoming Your Own Expert" worksheets to help define accommodations. The students than broke into groups and had to list on a paper as many accommodations as they could. After 10 minutes the class came back together and wrote the list on the board to see which group had the most on their list. The students really responded to the competitiveness. They were able to list quite a few accommodations. Most of the groups had the same ones but some students were surprised. They said they didn't know that there were so many different accommodations. There were only 16 different accommodations listed. Attendance was good, two students out due to competitions. Feb. 22 0List accommodations. Match accommodations to situations. A-Class read through College Student with Learning Disabilities Handbook. We read the section on accommodations and why they might be used. Students used information to complete Individual Student Fact sheet fi-om the "Becoming Your Own Expert" curriculum. The activity went well and the students were able to list accommodations for each area on their fact sheet. We had a great off topic discussion about how some individuals don't believe in LD (i.e. the president of Harvard). One student had heard it on the news. This particular student has somewhat of a negative attitude and doesn't believe the LD stuff is real-just need to try harder. Feb. 24 0-Identify learning styles and list study habits appropriate for different learning styles. A-The students all completed the Learning Styles Inventory on the computer. After returning to the classroom, the class discussed what good and bad learning and study habits they had. The students like the computer activity although they did think some of the questions were kind of silly. I felt that the format was a little immature. The students were able to list some study habits they might need to change after completing the inventory.

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100 Feb. 29 0Identify learning styles and list study habits appropriate for different learning styles. Define Modality and list personal modality strengths and weaknesses. A-The class began by reviewing the Learning Styles Inventory results. I facilitated this by reading the heading of each section and what the possible outcomes could be. The students than read their summaries to find out about themselves. After review all of the results we started on the Modality Unit from the "Becoming Your Own Expert" curriculum. It took a while to get through the learning style feedback. We just started the modality unit. The students commented that the learning style inventory was neat to look at but that they already knew some of that stuff. 1 felt the inventory lack any real depth but it got them thinking. 1 might try to fmd a more in depth learning styles evaluation next time. I collected journals today -just to make sure the students were keeping up. Some students wrote good comments and some don't understand the point of the journal. They just stated what we did not how they felt or thought. Mar. 2. 0Defme Modality and list personal modality strengths and weaknesses. AWe worked through the modality unit as a class. Each day we started off with an example of each modality in action (role-playing). I kept having to repeat information. This unit is a little complicated. The students were finally getting the hang of it towards the end of class. One student missing today. Mar. 14 0Defme Modality and list personal modality strengths and weaknesses. AWe worked through the modality unit as a class. Each day we started off with an example of each modality in action (role-playing). This is a long unit. The student's have commented that they are learning about themselves but it is very dry. I would definitely find a way to make this more interactive — Spread it out between other topics or shorten the worksheets. They are quite comprehensive but possible a little beyond the student's level. Mar. 16 0-Understand reason for setting goals and write a goal for oneself A-Class brainstormed goals people might set. I provided them with ways that goal setting can be helpful. The students had to list five goals for themselves. The students than selected and turned in one goal they felt they could accomplish in four weeks. The students were good at setting long term goals like graduation, marriage, children much easier than more intermediate and short term goals like get an A in this course or on this test. After providing a few examples they were able to list these types of goals. One student's attendance will be sporadic most of this month due to athletic participation. He selected a goal related to sportsconsidering his focus this month it seemed appropriate. Mar. 21 O-Listing accommodations specific to areas of need. A-Students worked in groups to find accommodations appropriate when given a scenario. This was called an Accommodations Scavenger Hunt because the groups were allowed to access all of the information and books discussed in class. This again was competitive. The first group done with acceptable answers won. The students really respond to group and competition. I think because the competition was done as a group it was less threatening. Only two students were absent and both were competing. Most of the students have been good about getting the information they missed from students or seeing me individually to get caught up.

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101 Mar. 23 0-Understand how learning disabilities can vary from student to student AWe watched the "Help Video" from Marshall University. I stopped the movie periodically to ask question and clarify. The video was a little boring. It was obviously not as professional as the others we watched. The students relate to the things said by the college students on the video. They were also surprised that one student wasn't diagnosed until Med. School. Mar. 28 0-Understanding communication styles. AWe had a guest speaker, Dr. Crooks. He works in public relations. The students thought his stories were interesting but they had a hard time figuring out the point. He varied off the topic into the broad scope of communication. I will try to relate it to the specific information on aggressive, passive and assertive communication styles that I wanted. Mar. 30 0-Understanding communication stylesspecifically aggressive, assertive, and passive. A-I gave the class the handouts from the "Becoming Your Own Expert" on the three communications styles. After going over the communication styles I role-played with the students each type of communication. The class oflfered feedback on each of the roleplaying events( how communication could be improved). The students enjoyed role-playing, at least those who were involved in the actual roleplaying. The other students offered good feedback. I think more examples of real situations related to the students experiences would be helpftil. We also did a short progress check on goals. Students wrote down what actions they had taken, how they had turned out, and what they were going to do next. Apr. 4 0-to communicate clearly about one's disability and needs. AWe read through the sheet from the "Becoming Your Own Expert" curriculum on advocating. Students filled out information sheet from same curriculum in order to organize their thoughts and needs so that they could advocate better. Good day but how helpful it was will be determined next class when they write scripts and try to advocate. Apr. 6 0to communicate clearly about one's disability and needs. A-students will use the script outline or make one of their own to make a script for advocating about their learning disabilities. The student information sheets should make this easier. After completing the short scripts students performed them in pairs. Students had a little trouble writing scripts but it went okay. Some scripts were short. The actual advocating went okay. Some students acted silly but I just needed to supervise them more. Apr. 1 1 0to communicate clearly about one's disability and needs. A-The class continued to advocate to each other in pairs. This time they had to provide feedback to each other and on a feedback sheet to me. The took it a little more seriously this time. The students wanted to advocate to me instead of each other. Next time I might arrange for other faculty or adults to be around for the students to advocate to.

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102 Apr. 13 0-to evaluate a set goal. A-The class went over a format for evaluating a goal. State goal, List actions, Record action results. Evaluate overall goal results, Suggest this that could be done differently. The students than had to complete this evaluation of the goal they had set and turn it in. The students were able to accomplish many of their goals but not always how they expected. Many students commented on how writing down the goal made them fee! more responsible for accomplishing it. It might spend more time on this next time. Apr. 18 0-iist reasons for counseling and types of counseling. A-A graduate student who worked in the counseling office as a counselor came and spoke to the class on the benefits of counseling, reasons for going, and confidentiality. The conversation was on topic and he had them do a few activities. The set up of the room made it difficult to do a lot of activities. The presentation was on topic and usefiil if not overly exciting. Apr. 20 0-list disclosure issues and possible solutions. A-The class had a discussion on why one may not disclose their disability, when it is important they do, and how to handle the emotions involved. It was a very open and honest discussion. The whole semester has been that way. Having a class with other students with disabilities help to give them a place to vent their issues. The fact that others didn't know that that was what the class was about was good. Apr. 25 0-Review and complete missing work. A-lt is exam week so only students who needed to make-up work came today. Three students who were missing work did show up to finish it. One student will be meeting with me later to complete his final assignment.

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"r » \ 103

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APPENDIX C INFORMED CONSENT

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INFORMED CONSENT Dear Participant: I am a doctoral student in the Department of Special Education at the University of Florida and my faculty supervisor is Dr. Jeanne Repetto. As part of my doctoral research, I need to gather information on self-determination skills. Self-determination is an area that includes defining or explaining one's disability and legal rights, determining one's strengths and weaknesses, identifying appropriate study skills and accommodations, and communicating this information to others in an appropriate and productive manner (self-advocacy). Individuals who have mastered these skills at a higher level have been shown to be more successful in life. The training sessions will take place one to three days a week for one hour over the course of five months. The instruction will be related to the current tutoring program you are attending. The instructor will be the primary investigator. You will be asked to participate in interviews at the beginning and end of the study to gather information about you selfdetermination. All of the interviewers will be affiliated with the University of Florida and will sign documents assuring the confidentiality to the extent provided by law of all information given during the interviews. These interviews will be videotaped in order for them to be reviewed, scored, and feedback offered. I will do the reviews, with the help of two other graduate students in the Department of Special Education. You may ask for the videotape to be given to you upon completion of the research, ask the researcher to erase the videotape, or give the research permission to keep the video for educational purposes only. This decision can be made at any time. The following instruments will also be administered prior to and upon completion of the explicit instruction. 1. Self-determination scale 2. Anxiety measure 3. Study skills inventory It is anticipated that participation in this project could benefit you in several ways: increase your overall self-esteem, enhance your ability to self-advocate, and increase your independent functioning. There are no known risks associated with this project and no compensation for participation will be given. You have the right to withdraw consent for participation at any time during this study, without penalty or prejudice. If you have any questions regarding any portion of this study, please feel free to contact me at 392-0701 ext. 292. Questions or concerns about the research participants' rights can be directed to UFIRB office, PO Box 1 12250, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. 32611-2250. (352) 392-0433. Thank you for your consideration. Sharon L. Blatz I have read the procedure described above, I voluntarily agree to participate in the procedure and I have received a copy of this description. SIGNATURE OF PARTICIPANT SIGNATURE OF PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR 104

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I 105

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APPENDIX D INTERVIEW SCORE SHEET

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Advocating Interview Score Sheet Pre Post Tape# Student # Observer SCORE BEHAVIORS RANGE SCORE (036) • EYE CONTACT 0None 1G lances 2-3X 2Looks 4-5x 3Constant • VOLUME 0Low/Soft (too loud) 1 Inconsistent 2Satisfactory • VOICE TONE (overall) 0-scared/agressive 1 -InconsistentAJncertain 2-friendly/confident • POSTURE O-Poor 1-Mixture 2-Good • INTRODUCES ONESELF 0No 1Says Hello & Name or 1 fact (not both) 2Name & 2 personal fact 3Name & 3 or more personal facts • EXPLAINS LEARNING DISABILITY 0Denies having one 1Acknowledges but has no info. 2Says 1 or 2 things about LD 3Mentions processing problem & at least 1 fact • INDICATES STRENGTHS 0None 1Lists 1 2Lists 2-3 3Lists 4 or more • INDICATES WEAKNESSES 0None 1Lists 1-2 2Lists 3 or more • REQUEST (Lists) ACCOMMODATIONS 0-None Mists 1 2lists 2-3 3lists more than 3 • JUSTIFIES ACCOMMODATIONS 0No explanation 1Gives 1 reason 2Gives 2-3 reasons 3Give reason for each accommodation • EXTERNAL SUPPORTS 0-None Mists 1 2lists 2-3 3lists more than 3 • ASKS ABOUT SERVICES 0Not at all 1Asks 1 question 2Asks 2 questions 3Asks 3 or more questions • REQUESTS CONTACT PERSON (INFO) 0-No 1-Yes • APPROPRIATE CLOSING 0-None 1-Yes • SPEAKS IN COMPLETE SENTENCES (THOUGHT) 0-Never 1 -Sometimes 2-Always • Total Score mmammmmmm 106

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107

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APPENDIX E SELF-DETERMINATION ITEM ANALYSIS

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Self-Determination Item Analysis Question Group I-I I-C C-I C-C pvalue 1 I am a dreamer Control 10.53% 0% 5,26%. 85.00% .60 Class 0% 7.14% 21.43% 71.43% 2 I know what is * X XVXX^/ TV WT^±%A'%f x^ Control 0% 0%) 6.67% 93.33% NA important to me Class 0% 0% 0% 100.00% 3. 1 have the right to Control 5.26% 0% 0% 94.74%) .27 decide what I want to do XX W V K VXW V T XXkXL X V T wU X ^ V4Vy Class 0% 6.67% 0% 93.33%. A \X/Vipn T Hn nnt opt VV liwii 1 \J\J ll\Jl Cnntrnl 5 26% 1 0 53% 5 26% 78 95% 29 something I want, I try a Class 6.67% 26.67% 20% 46.67% new annroach XX%^ WW vX li^ Ih/X V/ vX Xa 5. 1 forget to take care of Control 10.53% 10.53% 15.79% 63.16% .69 my needs when I am with Class 13.33% 6.67%) 40.00% 40.00%) my friends. 6. To help me the next Control 0% 10.53% 5.26% 84.21% .78 time, I evaluate how Class 13.33% 6.67% 20.00% 60.00% things turned out 7. There are no interesting Control 0% 0% 5.26% 94.74% NA possibilities in my fixture. Class 0% 0% 20.00% 80.00% 8 Nothine is imoortant to \j * X ^ Lx XX X X X X X X X v/ x v^xx x v Control 0% 0% 5.26% 94.740/0 .26 me. Class 0% 6.67% 6.67% 86 67% 9. No one has the right to Control 15.79% 10.53% 0% 73 68% .13 tell me what to do. Class 26 67% 0%> 13 33% 60 00% \J\J »\J\J / u 10 I can onlv think of one X vr • X ViXXX \JiHJ LXXXIXXV \J 1. V/XIW ContrnI 5 26% 0% 0%) Q4 74% 78 . / 0 wav to £?et something T Class 0% 6 67% 26 67% vU.v / /O want. 11. 1 can be successfiil Control 0% 5.26% 5.26% 89.47% .86 even though I have Class 0% 6.67% 6.67% 86.67% weaknesses. 12. 1 can figure out how to Control 0% 0% 5.26% 80.00% NA get something if I want it. Class 0% 0% 20.00% 94.74% 13. Sometimes I need to Control 0% 0% 0% 100.00% .23 take risks. Class 6.67% 6.67% 6.67% 80.00% 14. 1 don not have any Control 5.26% 0% 5.26% 89.47% .93 goals for school this year. Class 0% 6.67% 13.33% 80.00% *Significant at .05 level 108

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109! Self-Determination Item Analysis -continued Question Group I-I I-C C-I C-C Pvalue 15. 1 would not practice in my mind giving a speech to a class because it would just make me nervous. Control Class 5.26% 20.00% 5.26% 6.67% 21.05% 26.67% 68.42% 46.67% .38 16. 1 don not know my weaknesses. Control Class 0% 6.67% 5.26% 6.67% 5.26% 0% 89.47% 86.67% .46 17. My weaknesses stop me from being successful. Control Class 5.26% 0% 5.26% 13.33% 5.26% 13.33% 84.21% 73.33% .84 18. 1 do things without making a plan. Control Class 31.58% 40.00% 15.79% 20.00% 15.79% 20.00% 36.84% 20.00% .60 19. 1 know my strengths. Control Class 0% 6.67% 0% 13.33% 5.26% 13.33% 94.74% 66.67% .07 20. 1 do not know where to find help when I need it. Control Class 5.26% 0% 0% 0% 15.79% 13.33% 78.95% 86.67% .48 2 1 . It is a waste of time to reflect on why things turned out the way they did. Control Class 15.79% 13.33% 15.79% 13.33% 15.79% 13.33% 52.63% 60.00% .82 22. 1 dream about what my life will be like after I finish school. Control Class 0% 0% 5.26% 6.67% 0% 6.67% 94.74% 86.67% .83 23. 1 tell other what I want Control Class 5.26% 26.67% 0% 0% 10.53% 26.67% 84.21% 46.67% .64 24. If I want something I keep after it. Control Class 0% 6.67% 0% 0% 5.26% 6.67% 94.74% 86.67% .48 25. 1 think about how I could have done something better. Control Class 5.26% 0% 0% 13.33% 5.26% 6.67% 89.47% 80.00% .36 26. 1 make decisions without knowing if I have options. Control Class 21.05% 26.67% 21.05% 20.00% 15.79% 13.33% 42.11% 40.00% .83 27. 1 forgot to thing about what is good for me when I do things. Control Class 36.84% 40.00% 10.53% 13.33% 10.53% 13.33% 42.11% 33.33% .85 *significant at .05 level

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110 Self-Determination Item Analysis -continued Question Group I-I 1-C C-1 C-C Pvalue 28. 1 am frequently Control 26.32% 31.58% 10.53% 31.58% .25 surprised by what Class 13.33% 20.00% 6.67% 60.00% happens to me. 29. 1 am too shy to tell Control 5.26% 10.53% 15.79% 68.42% .49 others what I want. Class 13.33% 13.33% 13.33% 60.00% 30. 1 am too scared to take Control 0% 5.26% 10.53% 84.21% .85 risks. Class 0% 6.67% 13.33% 80.00% 3 1 . Criticism makes me Control 26.32% 10.53% 10.53% 52.63% .76 angry. Class 20.00% 20.00% 13.33% 46.67% 32. 1 am embarrassed Control 5.26% 5.26% 10.53% 78.95% .65 when I succeed. Class 13.33% 0% 0% 86.67% 33. 1 plant to explore Control 10.53% 5.26% 15.79% 68.42% .53 many options before Class 0% 20.00% 6.67% 73.33% choosing a career. 34. 1 prefer to negotiate Control 15.79% 5.26% 15.79% 63.16% .38 rather than to demand or Class 6.67% 20.00% 6.67% 66.67% give in. 35.1 would rather have the Control 42.11% 5.26% 15.79% 36.84% .89 teacher assign me a topic Class 40.00% 13.33% 26.67% 20.00% for a project than to create one myself. 36. 1 am unhappy with Control 0% 0% 10.53% 89.47% .25 who I am. Class 0% 6.67% 13.33% 80.00% 37. My life has no Control 5.26% 0% 5.26% 89.47% .75 direction. Class 0% 6.67% 6.67% 86.67% 38. 1 imagine myself failing Control 10.53% 0% 15.79% 73.68% .33 before I do things. Class 0% 20.00% 13.33% 66.67% 39. 1 like to know my Control 5.26% 5.26% 5.26% 84.21% .22 options before making a Class 13.33% 13.33% 0% 73.33% decision. 40. 1 think about what is Control 5.26% 15.79% 15.79% 63.16% .48 good for me when 1 do Class 13.33% 0% 13.33% 73.33% things. 41. Before I do something, Control 5.26% 0% 10.53% 84.21% .04* I think about what might Class 6.67% 26.67% 13.33% 53.33% happen. *cianiflr'!int at f\K

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Self-Determination Item Analysis -continued Question Group I-l I-C C-I C-C Pvalue 42. My friends are lucky Control 21.05% 21.05% 0% 57.89% .16 to know me. Class 26.67% 6.67% 13.33% 53.33% 43. 1 know what grades I Control 5.26% 0% 15.79% 78.95% .11 am working toward in my Class 6.67% 6.67% 0% 86.67% classes. 44. Doing well in school Control 5.26% 0% 21.05% 73.68% .64 does not make me feel Class 13.33% 0% 26.67% 60.00% good. 45. When I want Control 10.53% 5.26% 5.26% 78.95% .98 something different from Class 6.67% 13.33% 26.67% 53.33% my friend, we find a solution that makes us both happy. 46. It is important for me Control 5.26% 10.53% 15.79% 68.42% .73 to know what I do well in Class 13.33% 0% 13.33% 73.33% being a good friend. 47. In an argument, I am Control 0% 0% 5.26% 94.74% NA responsible for how I act Class 0% 0% 6.67% 93.33% on my feelings. 48. 1 wish someone would Control 5.26% 10.53% 10.53% 73.68% .78 tell me what to do when I Class 6.67% 6.67% 13.33% 73.33% finish school. 49. 1 like who I am. Control 0% 0% 5.26% 94.74% NA Class 0% 0% 6.67% 93.33% 50. Goals give my life Control 0% 0% 5.26% 94.74% .24 direction. Class 0% 6.67% 13.33% 80.00% 51.1 imagme myself being Control 0% 0% 0% 100.00% NA successfiil. Class 0% 0% 13.33% 86.67% 52. Personal hygiene is Control 5.26% 5.26% 15.79% 73.68% .87 important to me. Class 6.67% 0% 6.67% 86.67% 53. My experiences in Control 31.58% 5.26% 21.05% 42.11% .73 school will not affect my Class 20.00% 13.33% 13.33% 53.33% career choice. 54. When I am with Control 5.26% 10.53% 15.79% 68.42% .26 friends, I tell them what I Class 33.33% 6.67% 6.67% 53.33% want to do. significant at .05 level

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Self-Determination Item Analysis -continued Question Group I-I I-C C-I C-C Pvalue 55. If I am unable to solve Control 21.05% 5.26% 15.79% 57.89% .52 a puzzle quickly, I get Class 26.67% 13.33% 20.00% 40.00% frustrated and stop. 56. 1 make changes to Control 5.26% 21.05% 10.53% 63.16% .67 improve my relationship Class 0% 20.00% 13.33% 66.67% with my family. 57. I do not know if my Control 5.26% 15.79% 15.79% 63.16% .72 parents' beliefs are Class 6.67% 20.00% 20.00% 53.33% important to me. 58. If I need help with a Control 10.53% 5.26% 15.79% 68.42% .39 school project, I can figure Class 6.67% 0% 20.00% 73.33% out where to get it. 59. 1 am easily discouraged Control 15.79% 5.26% 5.26% 73.68% .18 when I fail. Class 26.67% 20.00% 6.67% 46.67% 60. 1 do things the same Control 31.58% 15.79% 15.79% 36.84% .50 way even if there might be Class 26.67% 26.67% 6.67% 40.00% a better way. 61. 1 know what is Control 5.26% 0% 5.26% 89.47% .13 important when choosing Class 0% 13.33% 0% 86.67% my friends. 62. 1 could not describe Control 15.79% 5.26% 26.32% 52.63% .01* my strengths and Class 33.33% 26.67% 0% 40.00% weaknesses in school. 63. 1 like to solve puzzles. Control 52.63% 5.26% 10.53% 31.58% .64 Class 46.67% 6.67% 20.00% 26.67% 64. Nothing good could Control 5.26% 15.79% 10.53% 68.42% .64 come from admitting to Class 13.33% 13.33% 0% 73.33% myself that I am having difficulty in a class. 65. At the end of the Control 10.53% 10.53% 26.32% 52.63% .75 marking period, I compare Class 13.33% 13.33% 40.00% 33.33% my grades to those I expected. 66. It is silly to dream Control 10.53% 0% 10.53% 78.95% 1.0 about what I will do when Class 6.67% 0% 6.67% 86.67% I finish school. *significant at .05 level

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113 Self-Determination Item Analysis -continued Question Group I-I 1-C C-I C-C Pvalue 67. 1 do not participate in Control 10.53% 0% 10.53% 78.95% 1.0 school activities because I Class 6.67% 0% 6.67% 86.67% have nothing to contribute. 68. 1 accept some criticism Control 5.26% 5.26% 10.53% 78.95% .72 and ignore some. Class 13.33% 6.67% 20.00% 60.00% 69. 1 give in when I have Control 0% 0% 21.05% 78.95% .01* differences with others. Class 33.33% 0% 6.67% 60.00% 70. 1 don not look back to Control 5.26% 5.26% 31.58% 57.89% .22 judge my performance. Class 13.33% 13.33% 20.00% 53.33% 71.1 tell my friends what I Control 0% 10.53% 10.53% 78.95% .04* want to do when we go Class 20.00% 26.67% 6.67% 46.67% out. 72. 1 know how to Control 0% 15.79% 10.53% 73.68% .53 compensate for my Class 13.33% 13.33% 20.00% 53.33% weaknesses in sports. 73. 1 ask directions or look Control 5.26% 10.53% 10.53% 73.68% .09 at a map before going to a Class 13.33% 26.67% 0% 60.00% new place. 74. 1 like to be called on in Control 57.89% 10.53% 15.79% 15.79% .75 class. Class 80.00% 0% 6.67% 13.33% 75. When I am angry with Control 0% 21.05% 5.26% 73.68% .22 my friends, I talk with Class 6.67% 26.67% 33.33% 33.33% them about it. 76. 1 like it when my Control 0% 5.26% 10.53% 84.21% .98 friends see me do well. Class 6.67% 0% 13.33% 80.00% 77. When going through Control 5.26% 5.26% 5.26% 84.21% .88 the cafeteria line, I pick Class 6.67% 6.67% 6.67% 80.00% the first thing. 78. 1 know how to get Control 5.26% 10.53% 5.26% 78.95% .90 11 1 T 1 • . help when 1 need it. Class 0% 13.33% 6.67% 80.00% 79. 1 prefer to flip through Control 26.325 15.79% 5.26% 52.63% .56 pages, rather than to use Class 46.67% 6.67% 26.67% 20.00% the index. 80. 1 think about how well Control 10.53% 10.53% 10.53% 68.42% .62 I did something. Class 20.00% 6.67% 0% 73.33% *significant at .05 level

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114 Self-Determination Item Analysis -continued Question Group I-I I-C C-1 C-C pvalue 81 1 do not volunteer in Control 21.05% 0% 15.79% 63.16%) .71 class because 1 will be Class 40.00% 0% 20.00% 40.00% embarrassed if I am wrong. 82. 1 do not know where Control 5.26% 10.53% 10.53% 73.68% .70 to get help to decide what Class 20.00% 0% 20.00% 60.00% I should do after I finish school. 83. If my friends criticize Control 0% 5.26% 10.53% 84.21% .23 something I am wearing, I Class 20.00% 6.67% 13.33% 60.00% would not wear it again. 84. 1 do not like to review Control 10.53% 10.53% 15.79% 63.16% .41 my test results. Class 26.67% 13.33% 20.00% 40.00% 85. Before 1 give a report Control 10.53% 5.26% 5.26% 78.95% .95 in class, I go over it in my Class 6.67% 13.33% 20.00% 60.00% mind. 86. 1 talk about people Control 26.32% 10.53% 10.53% 52.63% .75 without considering how it Class 20.00% 13.33% 20.00% 46.67% might affect them. 87. 1 feel proud when I Control 0% 0% 0% 100.00% NA succeed. Class 6.67% 0% 13.33% 80.00%) 88. When we are deciding Control 10.53% 31.58% 5.26%) 52.63% .71 what to do, I just listen to Class 20.00% 20.00% 6.67% 53.33% my friends. 89. When deciding what to Control 5.26% 5.26% 21.05% 68 42% .19 do with my friend, it is Class 0% 0% 33.33%) 66.67%) not possible for both of us to be satisfied. 90. When 1 want good Control 5.26% 10.53% 15.79%) 68 42%> 49 grades, 1 work until I get Class 13 33% 13 33% X ^ U /U 1 3 33% them. 91. If my team wins, Control 0% 5.26% 10.53% 84.21% .98 nothing can be gained by Class 6.67% 0% 13.33% 80.00% reviewing my performance 92. Before starting a pt job Control 31.58% 10.53% 10.53% 47.37% .59 or extracurricular activity. Class 26.67% 6.67% 13.33% 53.33% I think how it can affect my school work • t' * significant at .05 level

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REFERENCES Abery, B. (1994). A conceptual framework for enhancing self-determination. In M. Hayden & B. Abery (Eds.), Challenges for a service system in transition (pp. 345380). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. Abery, B., & Stancliffe, R (1996). The ecology of self-determination. In D. Sands & M. Wehmeyer (Eds.), Self-determination across the life span (pp.1 1 1-145). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. Adelman, P., & Vogel, S. (1993). Issues in the employment of adults with learning disabilities. Learning Disabilities Quarterly. 16 . 219-231. American heritage dictionary . (1992). Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, 42 U. S. C. 12101-12213 (1990). Anderson, P., Kazmierski, S., & Cronin, M. (1995). Learning disabilities, employment, discrimination, and the ADA. Journal of Learning Disabilities. 28 . 196-204. Aune, B., & Kroeger, S. (1997). Career development of college students with disabilities: An interactional approach to defining the issues. Journal of College Student Development. 38. 344-355. Bandura, A. (1977). Self-efficacy: Toward a unifying theory of behavioral change. Psvchological Review. 84 (2Y 191-212. Bender, W., & Golden, L. (1990). Subtypes of students with learning disabilifies as derived from cognitive, academic, behavioral, and self-concept measures. Learning Disabilities Ouarterlv. 13 . 183-194. Benham, N. (1997). Faculty attitudes and knowledge regarding specific disabilities and the Americans with disabilities act. College Student Journal. 3 I H 1. 124-127. Bigaj, S. J., Shaw, S. F., Cullen, J. P., McGuire, J. M., & Yost, D. S. (1995). Services for students with learning disabilities at twoand four-year institutions: Are they different. Communitv College Review. 23 r2V 17-31. 115

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117 Field, S., & Hoffman, A. (1994). Development of a model of self-determination. Career Development for Exceptional Individuals. 17 (2). 159-169. Field, S., & Hoffinan, A. (1996a). Promoting self-determination in school reform, individualized planning, and curriculum efforts. In D. Sands & M. Wehmeyer (Eds.), Selfdetermination across the life span (pp. 197-214). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. Field, S., & Hoffman, A. (1996hy Steps to self-determination. Austin. TX: ProEd. Field, S., Hoffman, A., & Posch, M. (1997). Self-determination during adolescence: A developmental perspective. Remedial and Special Education. 1 8 . 285-293. Greenbaum, B., Graham, S., & Scales, W. (1995). Adults with learning disabilities and social status after college. Journal of Learning Disabilities. 29 . 167-173. Gregg, N., Hoy, C, King, M., Moreland, C, & Jagota, M. (1992). The MMPl-2 profile of adults with learning disabilities in university and rehabilitation settings. Journal of Learning Disabilities. 25. 386-395. Hock, M. F. (1998) The effectiveness of an instructional tutoring model and tutor training on the academic performance of underprepared college student-athletes. Unpublished doctoral dissertation. University of Kansas, Lawrence. Hock, M. F., Deshler, D. D., & Schumaker, J. B. (1993). Learning strategy instruction for at-risk and learning disabled aduhs: The development of strategic learners through apprenticeship. Preventing School Failure. 38 . 43-49. Hock, M. F., Schumaker, J. B., & Deshler, D. D. (1995). Training strategic tutors to enhance learner independence. Journal of Developmental Education. 19. 1 8-26. Hoffman, A., Field, S., & Sawilowsky, S. (1995). Self-determination assessment battery user's guide . Detroit, Michigan: Wayne State University. '•-^ : ; « f ' . : : Kinston, K. M., & Hardy, L. (1997). Effects of different types of goals on processes that support performance. The Sport Psychologist. 1 1 . 277-293. Lane, H. B., Ziegert, C. C, Blatz, S. L., Jordan, L., Allsopp, D. H., Moriarty, T. A., Dede, D. E., &, Conway, T. W. (in-press). Student-athletes with Learning Disabilities: Unique, problems, unique solutions. National Association of Athletic Academic Advisors Journal .

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118 Lapchick, R. E. (1996). Eliminating the battle of the sexes in college sports. In R. E. Lapchick (Eds). Sport in society: Equal opportunity or business as usual? (pp. 122123). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Malian, I., & Love, L. (1998). Leaving high school: An ongoing transition study. Teaching Exceptional Children. 28 . 5-10. Martin, J., & Marshall, L. H. (1996). ChoiceMaker: Infiising self-determination instruction into the lEP and transition process. In D. Sands & M. Wehmeyer (Eds.), Selfdetermination across the life span (pp. 215-236). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. Martin, J. J., & Gill, D. L. (1991). The relationship among competitive orientation, sport-confidence, self-efficacy, anxiety, and performance. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology. 13 . 149-159. Mathieu, J. E., Marineau, J. W., & Tannenbaum, S. 1. (1993). Individual and situational influences on the development of self-efficacy: ImpUcations for training effectiveness. Personnel Psychology. 46 . 125-147. Mithaug, D. (1996).The optimal prospects principle: A theoretical basis for rethinking instructional practices for self-determination. In D. Sands & M. Wehmeyer (Eds.), Self-determination across the life span (pp. 147-168). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. Mithaug, D., Campeau, P., & Wolman, J. (1992). In J. Patton & G. Blalock (Eds.), Transition and students vyith learning disabilities (pp. 69-70). Austin, TX: Pro-Ed, Inc. Momingstar, M. (1997). Critical issues in career development and employment preparation for adolescents with disabilities. Remedial and Special Education. 1 8 . 307320. Ness, J., & Price, L. (1990). Meeting the psychosocial needs of adolescents and aduhs with LD. Intervention in School and Clinic. 26 . 16-21. Norton, S. (1997). Examination accommodations for community college students with learning disabilities: How are they viewed by faculty and students? Community College Journal of Research and Practice. 21 . 57-69. Patton, J., Cronin, M., & Jairrels, V. (1997). Curricular implications of transition: Life skills education as an integral part of transition education. Remedial and Special Education. 1 8 . 294-306. • ' -

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119 Pierce, B. E., & Burton, D. (1998). Scoring the perfect 10: Investigating the impact of goal-setting styles on a goal-setting program for female gymnasts. The Sport Psychologist. 12 . 156-168. Powers, L., Sowers, J., Turner, A., Nesbitt, M., Knowles, A., & Ellison, R. (1996). TAKE CHARGE: A model for promoting self-determination among adolescents with challenges. In L. E. Powers, G. H. S. Singer, & J. Sowers (Eds.V On the road to autonomy: Promoting self-competence for children and youth with disabilities (pp. 291322). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. , . ,^ ,^ , Powers, L., Wilson, R., Matuszewski, J., Phillips, A., Rein, C, Schumacher, D., & Gensert, J. (1996). Facilitating adolescents self-determination: What does it take? In D. Sands & M. Wehmeyer (Eds.), Self-determination across the life span (pp. 257-284). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. Reiff, H., Ginsberg, R., & Gerber, P. (1995). New perspectives on teaching from successful adults with learning disabilities. Remedial and Special Education. 16 (1). 29-37. Rings, S., & Sheets, R. (1991). Student development and metacognition: Foundations for tutor training. Journal of Developmental Education. 15 . 30-32. Rosenthal, I. (1992). Counseling the learning disabled late adolescent and adult: A self-psychology perspective. Learning Disabilities Research & Practice. 7 . 217-225. Sanders, G. (1997). Learning disabilities and athletes. Self-Help & Psychology Magazine. 15 . 7-8, Sanders, K., & Dubois, D. (1996). Individual and socio-environmental predictors of adjustment among college students with disabilities. Journal of Post-Secondary Education and Disability. 12 . 28-42. Sands, D. J., & Wehmeyer, M. L. (1996). Self-determination across the life span. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes. Scott, S. (1994). Determining reasonable academic adjustments for college students with learning disabilities. Journal of Learning Disabilities. 27 . 25-37. Scott, S. (1995). Using collaboration to enhance services for college students with learning disabilities. Journal of Post-Secondary Education and Disability. 12 . 1-29. Sitlington, P., Frank, A., & Carson, R. (1992). Adult adjustment among high school graduates with mild disabilities. Exceptional Children. 59 . 221-233.

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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Sharon L. Blatz was bom in Oakland, New Jersey, on April 14, 1966. She was the fifth of six children. She graduated fi-om Indian Hills High School in 1984 and then attended Florida Atlantic University. She received both her B.A.E degree (1989) and her M.A.E. degree (1993) in special education from Florida Atlantic University. Sharon taught in the Florida public school system in Broward County from 1 989 through 1996. Predominately, she taught special education students at one high school in Broward County. During the summers she taught at center schools for either students with mental retardation or severe emotional disabilities. During these eight years, Sharon taught in a variety of settings such as self-contained classrooms, resource rooms, and general education classrooms. Sharon worked as a classroom teacher, a co-teacher, and an inclusion facilitator. Sharon has worked with students with a variety of disabilities as the schools all used the varying exceptionalities designation. Sharon had the opportunity to coach Softball and be the assistant athletic director for many years. .. While completing her doctoral studies at the University of Florida, Sharon has served as a graduate teaching assistant in the Departments of Special Education, Statistics, and Mathematics. She assisted in the development of statistics and mathematics courses for post-secondary students with learning disabilities. Sharon has also had the opportunity to work as a graduate assistant in the Transition Center at the University of 122

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123 Florida. She has assisted in the development of products and given assistance to individuals around the state relating to the transition of students with disabilities. Sharon has also been able to work as a personal tutor for the LaurelED-tutoring program. This program provides individual tutors to student-athletes with learning disabilities here at the University of Florida. This job led to her employment as a graduate intern at the University Athletic Association. Her duties consisted of coordinating services for student-athletes with disabilities, education counselors, staff, and coaches about learning disabilities and attention deficit disorder, and assisting in the diagnosing of studentathletes with learning disabilities. Sharon has presented at numerous local, state, and national conferences. Her conference presentations have focused on student-athletes with learning disabilities, the development of post-secondary courses in statistics and mathematics, and transitions needs and services for students with disabilities. Sharon has participated in the planning and execution of conferences and inservice meetings regarding transition. In the future, Sharon plans to pursue research in the areas of post-secondary services and post-secondary course development for students with learning disabilities, along with research in the areas of student-athletes with learning disabilities, tutoring, and transition. Additionally, Sharon is interested in providing preservice and inservice teacher education, specifically about special education to secondary and post-secondary teachers who are not in the field of special education. Sharon hopes to pursue a career teaching at the university level and working with post-secondary students with disabilities.

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I certify that I have read this study and that, in my opinion, it conforms to the acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. i^J^nne B. Repetto, Chair Associate Professor of Special Education I certify that I have read this study and that, in my opinion, it conforms to the acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Assistant Professor of Special Education I certify that I have read this study and that, in my opinion, it conforms to the acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, Duane E. Dede Associate Professor of Clinical and Health Psychology I certify that I have read this study and that, in my opinion, it conforms to the acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.

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I certify that I have read this study and that, in my opinion, it conforms to the acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Cecil D. Mercer Distinguished Professor of Special Education This dissertation was submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the College of Education and to the Graduate School and was accepted as partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. December 2000 Dean, College of Education Dean, Graduate School