Academic Commons

Theses Doctoral

Self-efficacy, Knowledge, and Implementation of Secondary Transition Evidence-based Practices: Transition Professionals’ Practices With Students With Severe and Multiple Disabilities

Andersen, Lauren Elizabeth

For students with severe and multiple disabilities who generally need support after high school culminates, the post-secondary transition is a critical time period in which transition professionals and parents/guardians must come together to plan for the child’s future. Researchers from the National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center (NSTTAC) have identified secondary transition evidence-based practices (EBPs) that transition professionals can use to help students with severe and multiple disabilities develop critical skills that will enable them to be as successful as possible after high school. The present study utilized a mixed methods design to examine knowledge and implementation of secondary transition EBPs among transition professionals, including special education teachers and transition specialists. In the quantitative component of the study, a broad group of transition professionals who worked with students with severe and multiple disabilities reported on their levels of experience, professional development and training, university preparation, self-efficacy, and knowledge and implementation of transition EBPs. In the qualitative component of the study, semi-structured interviews were conducted among a smaller subset of special education teachers of students with severe and multiple disabilities to further understand their experiences and practices related to secondary transition EBPs and perceived barriers. Results of the quantitative component of the study revealed significant associations among professionals’ reports of self-efficacy and professional development and training, and their knowledge and implementation of transition EBPs. Findings from the qualitative component of the study revealed that special education teachers reported numerous responsibilities in their work with students with severe and multiple disabilities. Additionally, the following barriers were cited to implementing transition EBPs: priority given to academics, legal requirements, and lack of knowledge of transition and the adult service system. Together, both components of the study underscored the importance of continued work on this relatively under-studied population of students, those with severe and multiple disabilities, who are in need of effective post-secondary transition practices to improve their post-school outcomes.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Health and Behavior Studies
Thesis Advisors
Jahromi, Laudan B.
Degree
Ed.D., Columbia University
Published Here
November 2, 2020