Impact of Occupational Instruction on the Performance and Vocational Identity of Special Education Students

By Roessler, Richard T.; Foshee, Karen | Rural Special Education Quarterly, Fall 2010 | Go to article overview

Impact of Occupational Instruction on the Performance and Vocational Identity of Special Education Students


Roessler, Richard T., Foshee, Karen, Rural Special Education Quarterly


Abstract

A special education teacher in a small rural high school instructed 23 students with disabilities in the occupational domain of the Life Centered Career Education curriculum. The students increased their Performance Battery scores from pre to post test, achieving both mastery on the competency tests and a skill level comparable to that of regular education students (n=15). Although the instructed students tended to report increased levels of occupational information from pre to post testing, they did not report fewer barriers to employment or increased vocational identity on the My Vocational Situation test.

According to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 1990 (IDEA, PL 101-476), secondary special education programs in rural and urban settings are expected to prepare students with disabilities to achieve adult outcomes in such areas as integrated employment, postsecondary education, and vocational training. To enable students to achieve employmentrelated goals, schools must offer courses of study that are broader in nature than content-area academics (DeStefano & Wermuth, 1992, p. 541). Hence, the authors' purpose in this study was to evaluate the impact of an employment-related curriculum, the Occupational Guidance and Preparation Domain of Life Centered Career Education (LCCE; Roessler & Brolin, 1992), on the performance levels and vocational identity of special education students in a rural high school.

Follow-up data from high school special education graduates underscore the need to help students with disabilities increase their level of vocational preparation (Affleck, Edgar, Levine, & Kortering, 1990; Louis Harris & Associates, 1989; Siegel, Avoke, Paul, Robert, & Gaylord-Ross, 1991). In a recent review of the outcome literature, Chadsey-Rusch, Rusch, and O'Reilly (1991) reported that youth with disabilities have about a one in three chance of acquiring full-time competitive employment after leaving school. They also noted that, even if students are employed, many are underemployed and earning less than minimum wage. Moreover, instead of improving over time, their chances for suitable employment decrease as time passes.

Many explanations exist for the failure of students with disabilities to succeed in securing full-time integrated employment. Sitlington, Frank, and Carson (1992) attributed deficiencies in the vocational preparation of students with disabilities to lack of involvement in vocational counseling, vocational training, and postsecondary training programs. When asked to reflect on how well the schools prepared them for the future, students with disabilities rated the quality of their preparation as low (Skovron, 1993). As a consequence of poor vocational preparation, few of the students with disabilities in the Skovron follow-up study, which included rural communities in Colorado, had definite plans for the future, particularly with regard to employment or career goals.

Students with disabilities are not only less likely to acquire vocational skills needed to succeed in employment but they are also less likely to acquire a selfimage conducive to the development and maintenance of vocational aspirations. Fisher and Harnish (1992) identified low expectations for the vocational outcomes of students with disabilities as one of the primary factors negatively influencing the development of a vocational identity. They reported that parents had low expectations for the vocational success of their children with disabilities. Unfortunately, they also found that teachers and counselors communicated even lower expectations to students with disabilities. Consequently, students with disabilities tended to be less hopeful than other students that they could acquire jobs characterized by higher wages, good working conditions, and higher status. These considerations are indicative of the need for schools to provide better transitional programs for students. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Impact of Occupational Instruction on the Performance and Vocational Identity of Special Education Students
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.