|Title:||Exploring Predictors of Transition Planning Participation and Future Goal Aspirations of Secondary Students with Disabilities|
|Principal Investigator:||Johnson, David||Awardee:||University of Minnesota|
|Program:||Transition to Postsecondary Education, Career, and/or Independent Living [Program Details]|
|Award Period:||2 Years (07/01/2018-06/30/2020)||Award Amount:||$680,156|
Co-Principal Investigators: Thurlow, Martha; Wu, Yi-Chen
Purpose: The purpose of this project is to examine associations between student-, family-, and school-level factors, students' involvement in the transition planning process (as part of their Individualized Education Program [IEP]), and students' future goal aspirations for postsecondary education, employment, economic independence, and independent living. While research supports the connection between student involvement in the IEP process and post-school outcomes, there has been limited investigation of the factors that influence whether and to what extent students are involved and if that involvement is associated with the students' post-school goal aspirations. Additionally, as previous studies in this area have mostly included small, unrepresentative samples, there is a need for more detailed information on these relations for students with a wider range of disabilities. The current study aims to address these gaps by conducting secondary data analyses with a representative sample of students with disabilities from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2012 (NLTS-2012) to explore relations among student, family, and school characteristics, students' involvement in the IEP transition planning process, and students' future goal aspirations. Analyses will also explore how relations differ by disability category and race/ethnicity.
Project Activities: The research team will conduct four separate studies, to explore associations between student-, family-, and school-level factors, students' participation in the IEP transition planning process, and students' post-school goal aspirations. Secondary analyses of NLTS-2012 data will conducted and results will inform the development of a comprehensive model of factors that are associated with students' involvement in the IEP transition planning process and future goal aspirations.
Products: The products of this project will include preliminary evidence of a relationship between student-, family- and school-level characteristics and students' participation in the IEP process and post-school aspirations. Products will also include peer-reviewed publications and presentations.
Setting: Secondary data will be obtained from NLTS-2012, a nationally-representative study conducted in 2012-2013 involving approximately 12,000 secondary students (ages 13-21) with and without disabilities and their parents.
Sample: The sample will include the 8,960 students with IEPs across the disability categories defined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and their parents.
Malleable Factors: The malleable factors under investigation include student- (e.g., self-determination), family- (e.g., parent involvement in education), and school-level (e.g., college or career readiness coursework, vocational experiences) factors that may be associated with student's involvement in the IEP transition planning meeting. Students' participation in the IEP transition planning process will also be examined as a malleable factor that may be associated with students' future goal aspirations.
Research Design and Methods: The research team will conduct four studies using extant data from NLTS -2012. The first study will provide a foundation for the other three studies by exploring students' experiences in IEP transition meetings (i.e., their invitation, attendance, and contribution) and differences in IEP transition meeting involvement based on type of disability and race/ethnicity. The second study will examine associations between malleable student-, family-, and school-level factors and student participation in the IEP transition planning process. The third study will examine relations between malleable factors and students' goal aspirations. The fourth and final study will use the results of the first three studies to develop and test a comprehensive model of factors that influence students' involvement in the IEP transition planning process and future goal aspirations. Findings will have implications for the development of an intervention targeting improved transition outcomes for students with disabilities.
Control Condition: Due to the nature of the research design, there is no control condition.
Key Measures: The research team will use a number of key variables included in the NLTS 2012 Youth Baseline Questionnaire and the NLTS 2012 Parent Baseline Questionnaire. These include variables related to students' participation in the IEP transition planning process, student-, family- and school-level characteristics, and variables to assess students' expectations for the future. Some variables will be directly analyzed and others will be combined to create variables representing constructs not directly assessed in NLTS-2012 (e.g., parent involvement).
Data Analytic Strategy: The research team will conduct descriptive statistics, correlation, regression analyses, exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses, and multi-level structural equation modeling to explore the relationship among predictors (student, family, and school) and transition planning meeting invitation, participation, and contribution and future goal aspirations.