Key Impact Areas

Compared to deaf people without a college degree1,2,3, deaf college graduates have greater career mobility, enhanced earnings, and an increased likelihood of stable employment. Deaf people who have not completed postsecondary education are at risk for underemployment and unemployment, and they are also more likely to have shorter job tenure4The National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes conducted a review of the literature on practices that address root causes of challenges to deaf people’ postsecondary attainment and identified five key impact areas:

Postsecondary training and education programs are gateways to employment and maximizing one’s potential. There is no permanent or prescriptive “one-size-fits-all” solution to making educational programs and services accessible for deaf* learners, especially for a population with a high incidence
of co-occurring disabilities.

What can be learned from the existing literature on designing environments that provide access to these critical learning opportunities for deaf individuals?

Instructional Design and Accessibility

The transition from secondary to postsecondary learning environments marks two important changes in accessibility for students with disabilities.

  • First, the responsibility for initiating the use of accommodations shifts from the school district in secondary education to the student in postsecondary education7.
  • Second, at the secondary level, school districts are responsible for designing special instruction to meet the needs of students with disabilities and for providing accommodations. At the postsecondary level, education programs are not required to design special instruction; instead, accommodations are provided so that students with disabilities can access the same course program and content as other students20.


Institutions and instructors are responsible for designing learning to meet the needs of as wide a range of students as possible. Best practices in accessible instructional design call for multiple representations of content and multiple means of expression and engagement21Providing information and formal training on accessible design for instructors may result in more inclusive learning environments10.

Students can be more successful when flexible options are available to all8Deaf people who use sign language interact more when direct access to sign language is provided22Deaf students’ greater active involvement in learning environments is related to higher learning outcomes. Accessible vocational training and on-the-job training lead to higher employment success for deaf vocational rehabilitation clients19Internship and practicum experiences are often challenging for deaf individuals to obtain due to supervisors’ concerns about cost and competence. Educating internship programs about how to hire qualified interpreters, how to use accommodations, the benefits of cultural diversity, and the unique communication skills of deaf applicants can help change the attitude toward deaf applicants12.

Use of Accommodations to Improve Accessibility of Learning and Assessment

When providing accommodations to deaf individuals, it is important to consider personal needs and preferences. Students’ needs can change over time and often differ based on instructional content and format. Classroom-access accommodations for deaf students include a range of options, such as sign language interpreters, note-takers, captioned media, speech-to-text providers, or a combination thereof5,24.

  • Deaf students who sign often report the presence of quality interpreters as a main factor in effective classroom communication10.
  • There is evidence that real-time speech-to-text transcription is effective for some students in college-level classes17.
  • Contemporary learning environments often include a high degree of interaction between students. Furthermore, postsecondary content often contains a high degree of technical terminology. The format and content of curricula, as well as the preferences of deaf individuals, may dictate the need for dual accommodations (e.g., interpreting and speech-to-text) to facilitate both interaction and access to course content4.
  • A common misconception is that deaf students who have an interpreter have the same access classroom instruction as hearing students. Interpreters typically cover direct instruction by faculty members but rarely can capture all the dialogue that occurs in a postsecondary classroom setting1,18.
  • Access providers who work in postsecondary settings need to have sufficient content language proficiency, education, and skill to work in a higher education environment9,25.


When administered appropriately, testing accommodations can facilitate access to critical content and allow for more valid measurement by providing deaf individuals an opportunity to demonstrate their true abilities in a domain.

Test Accommodation Examples
Examples of assessment accommodations for deaf individuals include an interpreter or scribe during a test, extra time for standardized tests, or translation of test items into sign language5.
No One-Size-Fits-All Approach
There is no one set of ideal testing accommodations for deaf individuals. Accommodation decisions should be made by examining the faculty member’s intent for the test and matching student needs and preferences with accommodations that provide the greatest access to the content3.
Translating test items from English to American Sign Language requires thoughtful consideration of balancing American Sign Language linguistics and conventions while maintaining the original meaning of the items in English13.

Accessibility in Informal Learning Environments

Informal learning experiences, or incidental learning, include gaining knowledge from the broader educational environment, overhearing conversations, and learning from others during social interactions14.
  • Language, cognitive, academic, and social delays in young adults are often explained, in part, by the lack of access to incidental learning2,16.
  • Most deaf postsecondary students are in a predominantly spoken-language environment; therefore, they often experience reduced opportunities for social networking and expanding their language competency, vocabulary, and knowledge of world events.
  • Postsecondary institutions can increase access to informal learning opportunities by embedding language-accessibility options into formal social events, such as departmental presentations, mixers, and club meetings.

Influence of Institutional Capacity on Accessibility

An institution’s capacity to effectively serve deaf individuals relies on a variety of factors, including the following:
  • Availability of enough qualified service providers, including interpreters and captionists
  • Proximity of available resources (i.e., accessibility differs across rural and urban settings)
  • Request systems that are flexible enough to allow for complex accommodation needs7
  • Institutional readiness and proficiency in the use of technology
  Ease of access to accommodations is an important factor for institutional capacity to serve deaf individuals. For example, the structure or process for requesting accommodations can become a barrier to access for many students, especially if the process for requesting accommodations is unclear or unduly complicated5.

What Can I Do?

Accessible postsecondary environments are critical for deaf students’ learning and growth but are often challenging to design and implement. The changes in accessibility requirements between secondary and postsecondary environments are significant and call for a focus on meeting the access needs of individual students in a variety of learning environments, including professional environments.

The evidence-based strategies presented above show that there is a range of accessibility strategies, including direct instruction via sign language, use of interpreters, and use of speech-to-text services. Deaf individuals’ needs and preferences for specific accessibility strategies or combinations of strategies need to be thoughtfully considered when designing high-quality accessible environments.

National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. (2019). Research summarized! Designing accessible environments. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. Retrieved from
  1. Aldersley, S. (2002). Least restrictive environment and the courts. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 7(3), 189–199.
  2. Bull, R. (2008). Deafness, numerical cognition, and mathematics. In M. Marschark & P. Hauser (Eds.), Deaf cognition: Foundations and outcomes (pp. 170–200). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  3. Cawthon, S. (2015). From the margins to the spotlight: Diverse deaf and hard of hearing student populations and standardized assessment accessibility. American Annals of the Deaf, 160(4), 385–394. doi:10.1353/aad.2015.0036
  4. Cawthon, S. (2017, March). Online learning and deaf students: Accessible by design. Presentation to the 2nd International Conference on Teaching Deaf Learners, Amsterdam, NL.
  5. Cawthon, S. W., & Leppo, R. (2013). Accommodations quality for students who are d/Deaf or hard of hearing. Grantee submission.
  6. Cawthon, S., Leppo, R., Ge, J., & Bond, M. (2015). Accommodations use patterns in high school and postsecondary settings for students who are d/Deaf or hard of hearing. American Annals of the Deaf, 160(1), 9–23. doi:10.1353/aad.2015.0012
  7. Cawthon, S., Schoffstall, S., & Garberoglio, C. L. (2014). How ready are postsecondary institutions for students who are d/Deaf or hard-of-hearing? Educational Policy Analysis Archives, 22(13), 1–25. doi:10.14507/epaa.v22n13.2014
  8. Dolan, R., Hall, T. E., Banerjee, M., Chun, E., & Strangman, N. (2005). Applying principles of universal design to test delivery: The effect of computer-based read-aloud on test performance of high school students with learning disabilities. The Journal of Technology, Learning and Assessment, 3(7), 1–32.
  9. Downs, S., Davis, C. D., Thomas, C., & Colwell, J. (2008). Evaluating speech-to-text communication access providers: A quality assurance issue. 2002 PEPNet Conference Proceedings, 25–29.
  10. Foster, S., Long, G., & Snell, K. (1999). Inclusive instruction and learning for deaf students in postsecondary education. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 4(3), 225–235.
  11. Garberoglio, C. L., Cawthon, S., & Bond, M. (2017). Deaf people and employment in the United States: 2016. Retrieved from resources/Deaf%20Employment%20Report_final.pdf
  12. Hauser, P. C., Maxwell-McCaw, D. L., Leigh, I. W., & Gutman, V. A. (2000). Internship accessibility issues for deaf and hard-of-hearing applications: No cause for complacency. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 31(5), 569–574. doi:10.1037/0735-7028.31.5.569
  13. Higgins, J., Famularo, L., Cawthon, S., Kurz, C., Reis, J., & Moers, L. (2016). Development of American Sign Language guidelines for K–12 academic assessments. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 21(4), 383–393. doi:10.1093/deafed/enw051
  14. Hopper, M. J. (2011). Positioned as bystanders: Deaf students’ experiences and perceptions of informal learning phenomena (Doctoral dissertation, UR Research at the University of Rochester). Retrieved from
  15. Lang, H., Stinson, M., Kavanagh, F., Liu, Y., & Basile, M. L. (1998). Learning styles of deaf college students and teaching emphases of their instructors. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 4(1), 16–27.
  16. Leppo, R., Cawthon, S., & Bond, M. (2013). Including deaf and hard-of-hearing students with cooccurring disabilities in the accommodations discussion. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 19(2), 189–202. doi:10.1093/deafed/ent029
  17. Marschark, M., & Hauser, P. C. (2008). Cognitive underpinnings of learning by deaf and hard-of-hearing students. In M. Marschark & P. Hauser (Eds.), Deaf cognition: Foundations and outcomes (pp. 3–23). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  18. Marschark, M., Leigh, G., Sapere, P., Burnham, D., Convertino, C., Stinson, M., & Noble, W. (2006). Benefits of sign language interpreting and text alternatives for deaf students’ classroom learning. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 11(4), 421–437.
  19. Moore, C. L. (2001). Disparities in job placement outcomes among deaf, late-deafened, and hard-of-hearing consumers. Rehabilitation Counseling Bulletin, 44(3), 144–150. doi:10.1177/003435520104400304
    Oregon State University. (2015). Differences between K–12 and postsecondary education. Retrieved from
  20. Rose, D. H., Harbour, W. S., Johnston, C. S., Daley, S. G., & Abarbanell, L. (2006). Universal design for learning in postsecondary education: Reflections on principles and their application. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 19(2), 135–151.
  21. Saur, R. E., Popp-Stone, M. J., & Hurley-Lawrence, E. (1987). The classroom participation of mainstreamed hearing-impaired college students. Volta Review, 89, 277–286.
  22. Stauffer, L., & Viera, J. (2000). Transliteration: A comparison of consumer needs and transliterator preparation and practice. Journal of Interpretation, 61–80.
  23. Steinfeld, A. (1998). The benefit of real-time captioning in a mainstream classroom as measured by working memory. Volta Review, 100(1), 29–44.
  24. Witter-Merithew, A., & Johnson, L. J. (2005). Toward competent practice: Conversations with stakeholders. Alexandria, VA: Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf.

Promoting High Expectations for Success

High expectations for postsecondary success includes believing in deaf individuals’ capability to succeed and not viewing their opportunities as limited because they are deaf. These expectations are a necessary component of deaf youths’ environment to successfully navigate the transition from high school to postsecondary education or training. Many people hold low expectations for the abilities of deaf people10,30. Deaf individuals’ expectations about their abilities and future attainment do not develop in a vacuum; teachers, parents, and other professionals make a significant contribution to how those expectations and beliefs are formed3,7,25.

What can be learned from the existing literature on promoting high expectations for success of deaf people?

Strengths-Based Approaches to Promote High Expectations

Using strengths-based approaches, as opposed to focusing on deficits, provides opportunities for deaf people to develop autonomy, self-determination skills, and self-advocacy. Strengths-based interventions that promote self-determination include training in activities like goal setting, problem solving, and knowledge of self and the “soft” skills needed to navigate social interactions24,29.

  • Establishing “learning partnerships” with other deaf individuals in the classroom setting may be beneficial to bolstering social and academic skills needed to thrive in postsecondary settings.
  • Strong social skills in deaf high school students have been linked to higher rates of postsecondary attendance and graduation. Therefore, activities that promote social skill development in secondary school may have benefits that extend beyond high school graduation.
  • Parents’ expectations have been found to contribute to a stronger sense of autonomy in deaf adolescents and the likelihood of deaf individuals graduating from college and obtaining employment in the future.
  • Many supervisors at internship and practicum sites have doubts about deaf applicants’ abilities to perform well. Educating supervisors about the benefits of cultural diversity and the unique communication skills of deaf applicants can help change attitudes toward deaf applicants.

Postsecondary Planning Processes to Promote High Expectations

Postsecondary planning includes holding annual individualized education program (IEP) or admission, review, dismissal (ARD) meetings; identifying postsecondary goals; organizing a plan for the identified goals (including alternative strategies); and providing support and resources to achieve such goals. Postsecondary planning is highly individualized, so other planning activities may be warranted. Comprehensive planning activities (e.g., focus on short- and long-term goal-setting, identification of strengths and areas of growth, exploration of career interests) during secondary grades lays the foundation for student success in postsecondary settings.

Current Research
Current research demonstrates a lack of adequate transition preparation and instruction for deaf people after high school15,16.
Academic and Self-Advocacy Skills
An estimated 60% of deaf students who enroll in postsecondary settings do not graduate, as deaf students are often underprepared to navigate the postsecondary environment, especially in terms of their academic and self-advocacy skills12,17,19.
Tailored Strategies
Educational and transition instruction needs to include tailored strategies and support for deaf students26.
The Importance of Self-Advocacy
It is critical to integrate self-advocacy training into transition planning for deaf individuals so they are prepared to be assertive when requesting necessary accommodations or clarifying misconceptions about deaf people22.

Role Models to Promote High Expectations

Role models serve as examples of the attitudes, values, and behavior associated with diverse types of roles in a community. Role models can provide comfort, support, guidance, and motivation, especially in cultural minority populations. Deaf teachers, coaches, community members, and professionals are all examples of possible role models5. Role models and mentors address a critical need for deaf individuals and serve an important function in developing social capital. Deaf role models can also positively influence cultural attitudes and expectations held by hearing individuals toward people who are deaf.
  • Deaf role models have been found to benefit families, improve parent expectations and attitudes toward deafness, and increase young deaf individuals’ self-identity and belief in their capabilities5,20.
  • Deaf residential schools provide the opportunity for deaf students to access strong role modeling through deaf faculty and staff members18.
  • Recruiting older deaf students or members of local organizations to serve as role models or mentors can help students adjust to life in postsecondary settings1.

Parents and Teachers' Role in Promoting High Expectations

There is a significant need to educate parents and professionals about deaf individuals’ true potential for success.
  • Teachers of deaf students can provide support and guidance through sharing high expectations for their students’ achievement, teaching them to be self-advocates, and supporting their healthy self-concept and socioemotional development25.
  • Professionals who were previously trained in deafness or deaf issues reported more positive attitudes toward deafness6.
  • Administrators can support the development of high teacher expectations for deaf students by introducing cultural perspectives from deaf experiences into special education teacher training and preparation programs11.
  • Parental expectations are an important contributor to long-term outcomes (living independently, enrolling in college, completing college) of deaf individuals4.
  • Deaf adolescents whose parents have higher expectations about their future potential have a stronger sense of autonomy, are more likely to find their jobs independently, and have more job experience8.
  • Among deaf students with high expectations for themselves (e.g., the expectation that they will attend college), research provides evidence that their parents tend to have similarly high expectations. Additionally, family support has been found to bolster deaf students’ expectations for their own success23.

What Can I Do?

Promoting strengths-based approaches works toward shifting the culture to recognizing the strengths of deaf individuals working toward attaining their postsecondary goals. Early relationships, such as those formed with parents, caretakers, and teachers, influence the formation of deaf individuals’ self-beliefs and self-concept. Optimistic expectations for the success of deaf individuals can have a big impact on student development, including their motivation to pursue and persist in postsecondary education. The information presented in this brief shows that evidence-based strategies such as comprehensive career and college planning, mentor programs, and parent and professional education have the potential to raise expectations of deaf people.

National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. (2019). Research summarized! Promoting high expectations for success. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. Retrieved from www.
  1. Boutin, D. L. (2008). Persistence in postsecondary environments of students with hearing impairments. Journal of Rehabilitation, 74(1), 25–31.
  2. Carlson, E., Chen, L., Schroll, K., & Klein, S. (2003). SPeNSE: Study of Personnel Needs in Special Education. Final report of the paperwork substudy. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education.
  3. Cawthon, S. W., Caemmerer, J. M., Dickson, D. M., Ocuto, O. L., Ge, J., & Bond, M. P. (2015). Social skills as a predictor of postsecondary outcomes for individuals who are deaf. Applied Developmental Science, 19(1), 19–30. doi:10.1080/10888691.2014.948157
  4. Cawthon, S., Garberoglio, C. L., Caemmerer, J. M., Bond, M., & Wendel, E. (2015). Effects of parent expectations and parent involvement on postschool outcomes for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. Exceptionality, 23(2), 73–99.
  5. Cawthon, S. W., Johnson, P. M., Garberoglio, C. L., & Schoffstall, S. J. (2016). Role models as
    facilitators of social capital for deaf individuals: A research synthesis. American Annals of the Deaf, 161(2), 115–127.
  6. Cooper, A., Rose, J., & Mason, O. (2004). Measuring the attitudes of human service professionals toward deafness. American Annals of the Deaf, 148(5), 385–389.
  7. Crowe, K., McLeod, S., McKinnon, D., & Ching, T. (2015). Attitudes toward the capabilities of deaf and hard of hearing adults: Insights from the parents of deaf and hard of hearing children. American Annals of the Deaf, 160(1), 24–35. doi:10.1353/aad.2012.1602
  8. Garberoglio, C. L., Schoffstall, S., Cawthon, S., Bond, M., & Caemmerer, J. M. (2016). The antecedents and outcomes of autonomous behaviors: Modeling the role of autonomy in achieving sustainable employment for deaf young adults. Journal of Developmental and
    Physical Disabilities, 29(1), 107–129. doi:10.1007/s10882-016-9492-2
  9. Hauser, P. C., Maxwell-McCaw, D. L., Leigh, I. W., & Gutman, V. A. (2000). Internship accessibility issues for deaf and hard-of-hearing applications: No cause for complacency. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 31(5), 569–574. doi:10.1037/0735-7028.31.5.569
  10. Jamieson, J. R., Zaidman-Zait, A., & Poon, B. (2011). Family support needs as perceived by parents of preadolescents and adolescents who are deaf or hard of hearing. Deafness & Education International, 13(3), 110–130.
  11. Johnson, J. R., & McIntosh, A. S. (2009). Toward a cultural perspective and understanding of the
    disability and deaf experience in special and multicultural education. Remedial and Special Education, 30(2), 67–83.
  12. Kelly, R. R. (2015). The employment and career growth of deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals.
    Rochester, NY: REACH Center for Studies on Career Success, National Technical Institute for the Deaf, Rochester Institute of Technology. Retrieved from
  13. Lombardi, A. R., Kowitt, J. S., & Staples, F. E. (2015). Correlates of critical thinking and college and career readiness for students with and without disabilities. Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals, 38(3), 142–151.
  14. Luckner, J. L., & Muir, S. (2001). Successful students who are deaf in general education settings. American Annals of the Deaf General Libraries, 146(18), 435–446. doi:10.1353/aad.2012.0202
  15. Luft, P. (2012). Employment and independent living skills of public school high school deaf students: Analyses of the transition competence battery response patterns. Journal of the American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association, 45(3), 292–313.
  16. Luft, P. (2016). What Is different about deaf education? The effects of child and family factors on educational services. The Journal of Special Education, 51(1), 27–37. doi:10.177/0022466916660546
  17. Marschark, M., Lang, H. G., & Albertini, J. A. (2001). Educating deaf students: From research to practice. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  18. Moores, D. F. (2001). Educating the deaf: Psychology, principles, and practices (5th ed.). Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.
  19. Newman, L., Wagner, M., Cameto, R., & Knokey, A. M. (2009). The post-high school outcomes of youth with disabilities up to 4 years after high school: A report from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS2). Washington, DC: National Center for Special Education Research.
  20. Rodgers, K. D., & Young, A. M. (2011). Being a deaf role model: Deaf people’s experience of working with families. Deafness and Education International, 13(1), 2–16.
  21. Rogers, S., Muir, K., & Evenson, C. R. (2003). Signs of resilience: Assets that support deaf adults’ success in bridging the deaf and hearing worlds. American Annals of the Deaf, 148(3), 222–232.
  22. Schoffstall, S. J. & Cawthon, S. W. (In preparation). From theory to practice: Self-advocacy skill development of students who are deaf or hard of hearing who are transitioning into postsecondary settings.
  23. Shaver, D., Newman, L., Huang, T., Yu, J., & Knokey, A. (2011). The secondary school experiences and academic performance of students with hearing impairments: A report from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS-2). Menlo Park, CA: SRI International.
  24. Shogren, K. A., Lopez, S. J., Wehmeyer, M. L., Little, T. D., & Pressgrove, C. L. (2006). The role of positive psychology constructs in predicting life satisfaction in adolescents with and without cognitive disabilities: An exploratory study. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1(1), 37–52.
  25. Smith, D. H. (2013). Deaf adults: Retrospective narratives of school experiences and teacher expectations. Disability & Society, 28(5), 674–686. doi:10.1080/09687599.2012.732537
  26. Stinson, M. S., & Kluwin, T. N. (2003). Educational consequences of alternative school placements. In M. Marschark & P. Spencer (Eds.), Oxford handbook of deaf studies, language, and education (pp. 52–64). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  27. Walker, A., Kortering, L. J., Fowler, C. H., Rowe, D. A., & Bethune, L. (2013). Age appropriate transition assessment toolkit (3rd ed.). Charlotte, NC: National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center.
  28. Wandry, D. L., Webb, K. W., Williams, J. M., Bassett, D. S., Asselin, S. B., & Hutchinson, S. R. (2008). Teacher candidates’ perceptions of barriers to effective transition planning. Career Development for Exceptional Individuals, 31, 14–25.
  29. Wehmeyer, M. L., Shogren, K. A., Palmer, S. B., Williams-Diehm, K. L., Little, T. D., & Boulton, A. (2012). The impact of the self-determined learning model of instruction on student self-determination. Exceptional Children, 78(2), 135–153.
  30. Weisel, A., & Cinamon, R. G. (2005). Hearing, deaf, and hard-of-hearing Israeli adolescents’ evaluations of deaf men and deaf women’s occupational competence. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 10(4), 376–389.

Collecting and Using Data for Decision-Making

One of the longstanding issues in supporting postsecondary enrollment, persistence, and completion for deaf individuals is the lack of comprehensive data to identify individual and systemic factors that affect these outcomes. Although there have been several efforts to collect data about the transition from high school to postsecondary settings, including careers, the field often does not have the rigor or depth of information to make truly data-based decisions about policies, programming, or service provision for deaf individuals.

What can be learned from the existing literature on collecting and using data for decision-making related to postsecondary outcomes of deaf individuals?

Data-Driven Decision Making

Educational leaders see collecting and analyzing data to make decisions about educational programs, systems, and processes as a critical component to improving student outcomes8,16Data-driven decision-making is a key component of the U.S. Department of Education’s Results-Driven Accountability framework that the Office of Special Education Programs and states use to measure the outcomes of students with disabilities26.

Data-driven decision-making requires available and accurate data and training on analysis to make valid inferences and lead to positive change in educational processes and programs13,16Challenges to finding accurate and accessible data to improve education for deaf individuals include the following:

  • Establishing data-sharing agreements between secondary education, vocational rehabilitation, and other agencies is difficult.
  • With a greater number of deaf students attending mainstream schools, attendance and outcome data are more dispersed.
  • Variables that are important predictors of academic success for deaf individuals, such as social skills and parental expectations,6 are not often captured in research.
  • Inaccessible assessments may lead to invalid achievement data.

Most interventions for deaf individuals are not based on significant levels of empirical evidence. 
The low-incidence categorization of deaf students and the relatively small number of experienced researchers in the field of deaf education are likely factors in weaknesses in data-driven decisions about best fit of interventions to individual student needs.

Education and Employment Data About Deaf People

When making data-driven decisions about deaf individuals, it is important to be aware of the author’s background, affiliation with deaf individuals, and perspective toward deafness. The following are two common models:

The "Medical" Perspective
The “medical” perspective views deafness as a deficit condition and frames research with an intent to “cure” or “fix” deafness17.
The "Cultural" Perspective
The “cultural” perspective views deafness as something to be preserved and embraced. Deaf culture represents shared beliefs of a diverse group of individuals and includes common appreciation for the linguistic richness of sign language12.
It is considered “best practice” to use data that are collected and interpreted in collaboration with deaf people when making decisions about programs and practices for deaf people12The range of learning environments, communication modalities, and diverse experiences of deaf students should be considered when using data to make decisions about policies and programs related to deaf education, training, and employment.
  • Deaf students attend school in a variety of settings, ranging from those where they may be the only deaf student enrolled to those that enroll only deaf students.
  • Deaf students receive instruction in a variety of communication modalities. In some education settings, English is the only language used for instruction, whereas American Sign Language or some other visual communication mode is the primary language used with deaf students in other settings14,18.
  • In addition to diversity in linguistics and communication, deaf students have a wide range of cognitive and sociocultural needs22.
  • Approximately 35% of deaf students come from homes where a language other than American Sign Language or English is used regularly10.
  • Not all data include information about the diverse experiences of deaf individuals. Care should be taken when making decisions based on analyses of limited data sources.
  • Variability in the deaf population extends well beyond communication and learning environments and is important to consider. Data such as disability, gender, socioeconomic status, race, and ethnicity should be included when analyzing data and making decisions about deaf programs and practices.

Available Education and Employment Data

The Council of Chief State School Officers recently outlined the following four areas of students’ college and career readiness that were developed by collaboration between state departments of education and industry partners:

  • Progress toward post-high school credentials
  • Co-curricular learning and leadership experiences
  • Assessment of knowledge and skills
  • Transitions beyond high school


States face obstacles in collecting and analyzing data that represent these measures in a valid way. Despite the challenges identified in this brief, useful data about deaf individuals do exist. The second National Longitudinal Transition Survey dataset is one example and includes many variables related to transition to postsecondary environments for students with disabilities21Employment is a critical outcome in measuring postsecondary success. Multiple sources of national and state employment data are available for analysis, including the following:

  • The American Community Survey is a national survey that collects data about jobs, occupations, educational attainment, and other information that aids public officials in planning25.
  • American Community Survey data allow analysis of deaf individuals’ employment and education attainment11.
  • Data sources such as the American Community Survey, population surveys, and state vocational rehabilitation administrative records are available, but more consistency is needed across state vocational rehabilitation agencies in terms of data use to examine employment outcomes9.
  • Analysis of state vocational rehabilitation data can be used to identify obstacles to employment for youths with disabilities and highlight paths to improved employment outcomes24.


Many colleges and universities use survey instruments to measure factors related to student learning, retention, and graduation with the goal of institutional improvement20. There is a lack of institutional-level measurement of factors specifically related to deaf students’ learning, retention, and graduation at the postsecondary level.

Moving Toward Data-Driven Decision-Making for Deaf People

Existing data are available to make informed decisions about programs and services for deaf individuals.

  • Depending on the area of focus for analysis, census data, vocational rehabilitation data, and secondary school data (e.g., attendance, achievement, graduation) are available.
  • Include deaf educators, administrators, and counselors when analyzing and making inferences from data.
  • Use caution when making decisions from sources that lack the demographic data needed to fully represent the diversity of deaf people.


Districts and schools can collect and use data to tailor instruction and services15.

  • A variety of survey, assessment, and observation instruments can be used to collect data to improve instruction and programs at a local level.
  • Off-the-shelf instruments with English presentation will not necessarily yield valid data for deaf people who are American Sign Language speakers. When using English-based assessments, educators need to understand the English language proficiency of the student and English language demand of the assessment before administering.
  • Professionals administering assessments to deaf students need training to ensure high-quality data collection that will enable good decision-making.

What Can I Do?

Using data to drive practices and policies is a key tenet in today’s public education system. Data collection and analysis of deaf individuals’ education and employment outcomes are challenging due to the diversity and high degree of variability in the deaf population. The data are complex and require analysis by researchers that are knowledgeable of contextual issues. Filling gaps in knowledge about postsecondary outcomes and models to promote success for deaf individuals is critical.

National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. (2019). Research summarized! Collecting and using data for decision-making. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. Retrieved from www.
  1. Cawthon, S. (2007). Hidden benefits and unintended consequences of No Child Left Behind policies for students who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. American Educational Research Journal, 44(3), 460–492.
  2. Cawthon, S. (2009). Professional development for teachers of students who are deaf or hard-ofhearing: Facing the assessment challenge. American Annals of the Deaf, 154(1), 50–61.
  3. Cawthon, S. (2011). Accountability-based reforms: The impact on deaf or hard of hearing students. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press.
  4. Cawthon, S. W., Caemmerer, J. M., Dickson, D. M., Ocuto, O. L., Ge, J., & Bond, M. P. (2015). Social skills as a predictor of postsecondary outcomes for individuals who are deaf. Applied Developmental Science, 19(1), 19–30. doi:10.1080/10888691.2014.948157
  5. Cawthon, S. W., & Garberoglio, C. L. (2017). Introduction. In S. Cawthon & C. L. Garberoglio (Eds.), Research in deaf education: Contexts, challenges, and considerations (pp. vii–xv). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  6. Cawthon, S. W., Garberoglio, C. L., Caemmerer, J. M., Bond, M., & Wendel, E. (2015). Effect of parent involvement and parent expectations on postsecondary outcomes for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. Exceptionality, 23, 73–99. doi:10.1556/AAlim.2015.0002
  7. Council of Chief State School Officers. (2017). Destination known: Valuing college and career readiness in state accountability systems. Retrieved from
  8. Duncan, A. (2009). Robust data gives us the roadmap to reform: Secretary Arne Duncan addresses the fourth annual IES Research Conference. Retrieved from
  9. Fabian, E., & Neubert, D. (2015, May). Using VR data to improve outcomes for transitioning youth. Presentation at the Capacity Building Institute: Improving Postsecondary Outcomes for All Students With Disabilities, Charlotte, NC.
  10. Gallaudet Research Institute. (2013). Regional and national summary report of data from the 2011–2012 Annual Survey of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children and Youth. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University.
  11. Garberoglio, C. L., Cawthon, S., & Bond, M. (2016). Deaf people and employment in the United States: 2016. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes.
  12. Graham, P., & Horejes, T. (In press). Why positionality matters in deaf education research: An insider ethnographic perspective. In S. Cawthon & C. L. Garberoglio (Eds.), Research in deaf education: Contexts, challenges, and considerations. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  13. Hargreaves, A., & Braun, H. (2013). Data-driven improvement and accountability. Boulder, CO: National Education Policy Center. Retrieved from
  14. Karchmer, M., & Mitchell, R. E. (2003). Demographic and achievement characteristics of deaf and hard-of-hearing students. In M. Marschark & P. Spencer (Eds.), Oxford handbook of deaf studies, language, and education (pp. 21–37). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  15. Lynch, M. (2017, January 17). The newest trend in data-driven decisionmaking [Guest post]. Education Week’s Education Futures: Emerging Trends in K–12 Blog. Retrieved from
  16. Marsh, J. A., Pane, J. F., & Hamilton, L. S. (2006). Making sense of data-driven decision making. Retrieved from
  17. Middleton, A., Hewison, J., & Mueller, R. F. (1998). Attitudes of deaf adults toward genetic testing for hereditary deafness. The American Journal of Human Genetics, 63(4), 1175–1180.
  18. Mitchell, R. E., & Karchmer, M. A. (2005). Parental hearing status and signing among deaf and hard of hearing students. Sign Language Studies, 5(2), 83–96.
  19. National Survey of Student Engagement. (2016a). Engagement insights: Survey findings on the quality of undergraduate education—Annual results 2016. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research.
  20. National Survey of Student Engagement. (2016b). NSSE 2016 overview. Retrieved from
  21. Newman, L., Wagner, M., Huang, T., Shaver, D., Knokey, A.-M., Yu, J., … Cameto, R. (2011). Secondary school programs and performance of students with disabilities. A special topic report of findings from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS2) (NCSER 2012-3000). Washington, DC: National Center for Special Education Research.
  22. Paul, P. V. (2016). d/Deaf and hard of hearing learners: DML, DLL, ELL, EL, ESL . . . or culturally and linguistically diverse. American Annals of the Deaf, 161(1), 3–7.
  23. Pizzo, L., & Chilvers, A. (2016). Assessment and d/Deaf and hard of hearing multilingual learners: Considerations and promising practices. American Annals of the Deaf, 161(1), 56–66.
  24. Poppen, M., Lindstrom, L., Unruh, D., Khurana, A., & Bullis, M. (2017). Preparing youth with disabilities for employment: An analysis of vocational rehabilitation case services data. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 46(2), 209–224.
  25. U.S. Census Bureau. (2016). American Community Survey: Information guide. Retrieved from
  26. U.S. Department of Education. (2014). New accountability framework raises the bar for state special education programs. Retrieved from
  27. Wohlstetter, P., Datnow, A., & Park, V. (2008). Creating a system for data-driven decision-making: Applying the principal-agent framework. School Effectiveness and School Improvement, 19(3), 239–259.

Leveraging Community Resources

Strengthening community networks and connections increases social capital, the advantage gained through relationships and social networks. Social capital can help individuals navigate complex school and workplace situations. Some deaf individuals have limited access to social capital due to information deprivation and reduced access to full language environments. Without access to the full mix of informal and formal communication opportunities necessary to build social capital, it can be challenging for deaf individuals to gain entry into higher levels of responsibility and advancement.

What can be learned from the existing literature on leveraging community resources to improve postsecondary outcomes for deaf individuals?

Building Social Capital Through Community Activities

Community members can include both deaf and hearing people who reside in a region (either locally or nationally) and/or share similar cultural values (e.g., effective communication for all, accessibility, increasing opportunities for education and employment, social justice) and identification. Each of these intersecting communities brings different values and perspectives to community activities. Members may include but are not limited to parents, students, educators, employment service providers, representatives of disability organizations, and local legislators. Both rural and urban communities emphasize using strategies such as connecting stakeholders, strengthening existing collaborations, and educating new employers on the importance of increasing employment opportunities for people with disabilities to build social capital3.
Working Together
Community members and stakeholders can effectively work together to identify what actions need to be taken at the local community and state levels to improve employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities10.
Sharing Experiences & Advice
Community members can build social capital by sharing experiences and advice on how to navigate inaccessible settings and cope with frustrating obstacles in a hearing-dominated society7.

Outcomes Associated with Building Social Capital

Identifying as part of the deaf community can be beneficial for self-esteem, which is highly related to achievement4,13Further, community membership can help cushion discrimination, rejection, and failure8Deaf community members are an invaluable resource in providing guidance to hearing parents with a deaf child26Deaf role models help build social capital by providing support with language development, communication skills, social skills, and guidance within academic and work settings. Increased access and opportunities for engaging with deaf role models and peers bolsters the number of protective factors in a youth’s life20Mentors of the same cultural or ethnic background have special insight into the challenges of navigating academia as a minority. Such mentors are better positioned to provide effective psychosocial and career development support11,15,18People who attend community discussion events report being more aware of what they can do to increase employment opportunities for young people with disabilities24.

Types of Community Activities that Build Social Capital

Key components of community-based approaches to building social capital include the following:

  • Identifying common issues that require attention
  • Identifying possible evidence-based solutions to common issues
  • Devising specific strategies for collaborating with essential stakeholders and developing a plan for implementation19


One strategy for building social capital that allows community members to discuss important issues and strategies to address these issues is termed “community conversations.” The following are core assumptions of community conversations:

  • All communities possess unique social and cultural resources.
  • Community members are experts on the most important challenges that face the community and the most viable solutions for addressing challenges.
  • Communities that come together identify new resources and ideas through connections with people with different perspectives and life experiences.
  • Real and lasting change comes with strategies and approaches that originate in the community.

Ideas produced through community conversation provide critical information for stakeholders on what services and systems change efforts are needed. Extracurricular activities outside of school such as athletics, religious activities, youth groups, or performing art groups increase links to community networks.

What Can I Do?

The literature supports strengthening community networks and connections to increase social capital, which can help individuals navigate complex school and workplace situations. Within deaf communities, community-based advocacy and research increases participant buy-in, increases collaboration, and gains the trust of deaf people1. Strong community networks and relationships are important for the success of deaf youth6. Strengthening community connections, particularly with the deaf community, contributes significantly to psychosocial well-being2,13,14 and persistence toward degree completion9,22.

National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. (2019). Research summarized! Leveraging community resources. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. Retrieved from www.

  1. Barnett, S., McKee, M., Smith, S. R., & Pearson, T. A. (2011). Deaf sign language users, health inequities, and public health: Opportunity for social justice. Preventing Chronic Disease, 8(2), A45.
  2. Bat-Chava, Y. (1993). Antecedents of self-esteem in deaf people: A meta-analytic review. Rehabilitation Psychology, 38(4), 221–234. doi:10.1037/h0080303
  3. Bumble, J. L., Carter, E. W., McMillan, E., & Manikas, A. S. (In press). Using community conversations to expand employment opportunities of people with disabilities in rural and urban communities.
  4. Campbell, J. D., & Lavallee, L. F. (1993). Who am I? The role of self-concept confusion in understanding the behavior of people with low self-esteem. In R. Baumeister (Ed.), Selfesteem: The puzzle of low self-regard (pp. 3–20). New York, NY: Plenum Press.
  5. Cawthon, S. W., Johnson, P. M., Garberoglio, C. L., & Schoffstall, S. J. (2016). Role models as facilitators of social capital for deaf individuals: A research synthesis. American Annals of the Deaf, 161(2), 115–127.
  6. Cawthon, S. W., Leppo, R., Dickson, D., Schoffstall, S., & Wendel, E. (2016). The art of managing expectations: Vocational rehabilitation counselors as mediators of expectations between clients who are deaf and potential employers. JADARA, 50(1). Retrieved from
  7. Covell, J. A. (2006). The learning styles of deaf and non-deaf pre-service teachers in deaf education. Beaumont, TX: Lamar University.
  8. Crocker, J., & Major, B. (1989). Social stigma and self-esteem: The self-protective properties of stigma. Psychological Review, 96(4), 608–630.
  9. Danermark, B. (1995). Persistence and academic and social integration of hearing-impaired students in postsecondary education: A review of research. JADARA, 29(2), 20–33.
  10. Dutta, A., Kundu, M. M., Johnson, E., Chan, F., Trainor, A., Blake, R., & Christy, R. (2016). Community conversations: Engaging stakeholders to improve employment-related transition services for youth with emotional and behavioral disabilities. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 45(1), 43–51.
  11. Hauser, P. (2017, April). Mentoring aspiring scientists. Symposium in Research and Child Development Pre-Conference Workshop. Austin, TX.
  12. Hintermair, M. (2007). Prevalence of socioemotional problems in deaf and hard of hearing children in Germany. American Annals of the Deaf, 152(3), 320–330.
  13. Hintermair, M. (2008). Self-esteem and satisfaction with life of deaf and hard-of-hearing people—A resource-oriented approach to identity work. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 13(2), 278–300.
  14. Jambor, E., & Elliott, M. (2005). Self-esteem and coping strategies among deaf students. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 10(1), 63–81.
  15. Koberg, C. S., Boss, R. W., & Goodman, E. (1998). Factors and outcomes associated with Mentoring among health-care professionals. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 53(1), 58–72.
  16. Morrow, S., Gonzalez, A., Hampton, T., & Lantz, A. (2015). Working with ODEP to create systems change: The story of two protégé states. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 42(3), 195–200.
  17. Newman, M., Barabasi, A. L., & Watts, D. J. (2006). The structure and dynamics of networks. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
  18. Ragins, B. R. (2010). Relational mentoring: A positive approach to mentoring at work. In K. Cameron & G. Spreitzer (Eds.), The handbook of positive organizational scholarship (pp. 519–536). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
  19. Roussos, S. T., & Fawcett, S. B. (2000). A review of collaborative partnerships as a strategy for improving community health. Annual Review of Public Health, 21(1), 369–402.
  20. Schenkel, L. S., Rothman-Marshall, G., Schlehofer, D. A., Towne, T. L., Burnash, D. L., & Priddy, B. M. (2014). Child maltreatment and trauma exposure among deaf and hard of hearing young adults. Child Abuse & Neglect, 38(10), 1581–1589.
  21. Schoffstall, S., Cawthon, S., Dickson, D., Bond, M., Ocuto, O., & Ge, J. (2016). The impact of high school extracurricular involvement on postsecondary outcomes among deaf and hard-ofhearing youth. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 29(2), 179–197.
  22. Stinson, M. S., Scherer, M. J., & Walter, G. G. (1987). Factors affecting persistence of deaf college students. Research in Higher Education, 27(3), 244–258.
  23. Swedeen, B., Cooney, M., Moss, C., & Carter, E. W. (2012). Launching inclusive efforts through community conversations: A practical guide for families, service providers, and communities. Retrieved from
  24. Trainor, A. A., Carter, E. W., Swedeen, B., & Pickett, K. (2011). Community conversations: An approach for expanding and connecting opportunities for employment for adolescents with disabilities. Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals, 35(1), 50–60. doi:10.1177/0885728811419166
  25. Wagner, M., Cadwallader, T. W., Marder, C., Cameto, R., Cardoso, D., Garza, N., … Newman, L. (2003). Life outside the classroom for youth with disabilities: A report from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS2). Retrieved from
  26. Watkins, S., Pittman, P., & Walden, B. (1998). The deaf mentor experimental project for young children who are deaf and their families. American Annals of the Deaf, 143(1), 29–34.

Developing Collaborative and Integrated Systems

Many of the current structures of services for deaf individuals operate in silos and often lack coordination, which indicates an immediate need for systemic change. Disparate data systems and administrative structures make it difficult to coordinate a timely, effective transition support process. Through the development and implementation of the Results-Driven Accountability framework, the Office of Special Education Programs has positioned itself to support states in driving systems changes that lead to improved outcomes for students with disabilities2.

What can be learned from the existing literature on developing collaborative and integrated systems to improve postsecondary outcomes for deaf individuals?

Integrated Data Systems

Disparate education data systems make it challenging to conduct longitudinal analyses that could be used to identify areas of need in educational and employment programs and practices4Data systems are considered “connected” if the state either has a central data warehouse that contains data from multiple agencies or creates temporary links between data systems. Connections or links can be made through common variables such as a student identification number, which often stays consistent throughout a student’s years in the state education system.

Barriers to connecting early-learning, K–12, postsecondary, and workforce data systems include data privacy concerns and political and financial hurdles. Thirty-seven states and Washington, D.C., currently connect data between at least two of the four core systems (i.e., early learning, K–12, postsecondary, workforce)6States with connected data systems can use data to inform legislation and drive decision-making on education policies and practices7.

Challenges to Tracking Data of Deaf Individuals

The Deaf Community and Data Collection
The deaf population is considered low incidence, and the methods used to collect a complete count of deaf students have been criticized as being biased or inadequate, resulting in inaccurate results5.
At the High School Level

At the secondary level, students are eligible for services through the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) only if their disability negatively affects educational performance. Because deafness does not negatively affect performance for all deaf students, IDEA data alone do not accurately capture education data for this population.

At the College Level
At the postsecondary level, the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 requires students to notify their institution’s disability office of their disability to request accommodations3. Many deaf students choose not to disclose their disability1, leading to an inability to accurately track postsecondary education data of deaf individuals.
Deaf Students' Data

Educational data systems vary in how they house deaf students’ data. When a student’s home district makes a referral to a school for the deaf, the student’s data sometimes are sent back to the home district and other times remain at the school for the deaf. This variation in data management presents a challenge in understanding how educational settings and practices affect achievement.

VR Data

Vocational rehabilitation data do not represent a complete picture of employment data for deaf individuals because only individuals whose disability presents “a substantial barrier to employment” are eligible for vocational rehabilitation services.

Collaborative Administrative Structures

Collaborative structures will be needed to fulfill the new transition services requirements under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. Collaboration between agencies is a predictor of positive postsecondary outcomes for students with disabilities9.

Special education and vocational rehabilitation collaboration is limited possibly due to a lack of understanding of each other’s practices and systems, differences in philosophy, professional biases, and limited collaboration skills in educators and counselors. Transition teachers and vocational rehabilitation counselors identify joint training as a practice that can improve collaboration.

Models for cross-state collaboration include professional learning communities that allow states to identify issues and opportunities and work together toward common goals while providing feedback and support.

Even though deaf people are a low-incidence population, they are not evenly distributed throughout geographic areas. Historical factors including current or previous locations of schools for the deaf, a strong network of services, and accessible work environments lead to clusters of high-density populations of deaf individuals and a need for administrative structures that allow for dissemination of information and practices from the clusters to more remote areas.

What Can I Do?

The systems that support deaf individuals currently reside within K–12 education, postsecondary education, and rehabilitative services. Some state agencies have knowledge and awareness of effective programs and policies to improve education and employment outcomes for deaf individuals, but others may not. Improved collaboration and positive working relationships between systems—within institutions, communities, and states—are critical for deaf individuals’ postsecondary attainment.

National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. (2019). Research summarized! Developing collaborative and integrated systems. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes. Retrieved from

  1. Cawthon, S. W., Schoffstall, S. J., & Garberoglio, C. L. (2014). How ready are institutions for students who are deaf or hard of hearing? Education Policy Analysis Archives, 22(13). doi:10.14507/epaa.v22n13.2014
  2. The Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center. (2017). Office of Special Education Programs: SSIP Phase I implementation guide – Part B. Retrieved from topics/ssip/Part-B-Implementation-Guide-May7.pdf
  3. Leppo, R. H., Cawthon, S. W., & Bond, M. P. (2013). Including deaf and hard-of-hearing students with co-occurring disabilities in the accommodations discussion. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 19, 189–202.
  4. Manzoor, M. (2016). Role of learning analytics in enhancing teaching and learning. In M. Anderson & C. Gavan (Eds.), Developing effective educational experiences through learning analytics (pp. 259–281). Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference.
  5. Mitchell, R. E. (2017). Demographics. In G. Gertz & P. Boudreault (Eds.), The SAGE deaf studies encyclopedia (pp. 296–298). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE. 6 Perez, Z. (2016). 50-state comparison on statewide longitudinal data systems. Retrieved from
  6. Perez, Z. (2017). Policy analysis: Examining SLDS development and utility. Retrieved from 
  7. Taylor, D., Morgan, R., & Callow-Heusser, C. (2016). A survey of vocational rehabilitation counselors and special education teachers on collaboration in transition planning. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 44, 163–173. doi:10.3233/JVR-150788
  8. Test, D. W., Mazzotti, V. L., Mustain, A. L., Fowler, C. H., Korterling, L., & Kohler, P. (2009). Evidence-based secondary transition predictors for improving postschool outcomes for students with disabilities. Career Development for Exceptional Individuals, 32, 160–181.
  9. WestEd National Center for Systemic Improvement. (2017). Transforming state systems to improve outcomes for children with disabilities. Retrieved from

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