Transition is a process that occurs throughout life. The focus of this basic qualitative study was on the services and programs provided to individuals with autism and intellectual disabilities. This study included the exploration of participants’ experiences in the classroom and community. There was limited research on current pioneers in the area of transition services for individuals with disabilities between the ages of 18 and 22 who returned to the public school system for a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). The literature review in this study included extensive research regarding the value of and many practical suggestions for designing quality transition programming to prepare each student with skills and competencies necessary for successful post-school outcomes. This study included interviews with transition coordinators, special education directors, special education teachers, and paraprofessionals. The research findings include observations of transition programs within the classroom and community setting, a review of Transition Individualized Education plans. The results from this study identified the services and programs that have led to successful post-secondary options for students with disabilities and revealed the following findings, community independence, soft and hard skills, utilization of visuals to design the curriculum, real-world activities, and age-appropriate experiences. The findings of this qualitative study suggested several implications for transition services and programs for students between the ages of 18 and 22 with autism and intellectual disabilities. School districts should offer community-based programs for students with disabilities starting at the age of 14, which would be in middle school. Despite the data collected during this study, services and programs for students with intellectual disabilities and autism continue to need fine-tuning.
|Commitee:||Boston, Marc, Hinshaw, Steve|
|Department:||School of Education|
|School Location:||United States -- Minnesota|
|Source:||DAI-A 78/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Special education, Secondary education|
|Keywords:||Autism, Free Appropriate Public Education, Intellectual disabilities, Special education, Transition services|
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