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Self-Directed Employment

A Handbook for Transition Teachers and Employment Specialists

Self-Directed Employment: A Handbook for Transition Teachers and Employment Specialists provides step-by-step instructions on how to infuse self-directed employment strategies into your school transition or agency-supported employment programs. First, you will read about the evolving nature of employment supports for individuals with disabilities and the important role that self-determination plays in this evolution. After the steps are stories and data demonstrating the effectiveness of the Self-Directed Employment (SDE) methodology.

Self-Employment Book Cover

This book consists of five major parts: a general discussion about employment and self-determination, assessment methodology, placement and follow-along methodology, data analysis, and photocopiable forms. This first two chapters summarize community employment and self-determination research. Chapters 3-7 present the steps for conducting an SDE assessment. Chapters 8 and 9 present information on placement and on-the-job problem solving. Chapters 2, 10, and 11 include case studies and summative data for the SDE methodology. Finally, the appendix contains photocopiable forms that enable the user to copy and implement the SDE methodology in schools or supported employment programs. Readers can download images directly from the Picture Bank below or from the publisher's website.

**Users may access materials at no cost thanks to permission from Paul Brookes Publishing**


Self-Directed Employment Lessons and Picture Bank

All chapter materials are PDF, unless otherwise noted. Picture Bank files are JPEG.

Chapter 1 discusses two major points - the revolutionary concept of community employment for people with significant disabilities and the structure of supported employment as well as the evolution of employment practices from 'get them any job' to self-directed employment. Chapter 2 describes and defines self-determination and explains how and why self-determination powers the SDE methodology.

  • Chapter 2 - Self-Determination: The Concept Powering Self-Directed Employment Practices

Chapter 3 presents the SDE curriculum and explains choice management and self-management outcomes. The organizational schema explains how to use Chapters 4-9 and the implementation reference guide lists the forms needed to implement each curriculum objective and the approximate time it will take.

  • Chapter 4 - Introduction to Section I. Goal A: Making Choices
  • Chapter 5 - Introduction to Section I. Goal B: Exploring Choices
  • Chapter 6 - Introduction to Section I. Goal C: Testing Choices
  • Chapter 7 - Introduction to Section I. Goal D: Final Choices

Where Chapters 4-7 focus on implementing the choice management assessment process, Chapter 8 emphasizes job placement matched to students' interests, skills, and job demands before and after accepting a new position. Chapter 9 explains how to apply basic self-management skills to adjust to demands of the workplace.

  • Chapter 8 - Introduction to Section II: Goal E: Finding a Job Matching Skills and Preferences
  • Chapter 9 - Introduction to Section II: Goal F: Solving On-the-Job Problems

Chapter 10 includes narratives and case studies of SDE participants' experiences, successes, lessons learned while navigating the ups and downs of securing employment, and instances where extenuating circumstances impeded success. Chapter 11 provides a review of the SDE assessment and placement procedures. Data is presented on the individual participants as well as program data and cost data. Chapter 12 summarizes ideas behind the SDE program.  

The Appendix presents photocopiable forms used in Chapters 4-9. Users have permission to photocopy the individual forms. The Reference Box located in the top left corner of each form lists the associated section, goal, and objective (ex: I:C:10, see Ogranizational Schema in Ch3).

Suggested citation: Martin, J. E., Mithaug, D. E., Oliphint, J. H., Husch, J. V., & Frazier, E. S. (2002). Self-directed employment: A handbook for transition teachers and employment specialists. Baltimore, MD: Paul Brookes Publishing Co., Inc.