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 Table of Contents  
AWARD PAPER: DR JK TRIVEDI AWARD PAPER
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 34  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 16-20

Effect of teacher's training on enhancing self-determination among individuals with intellectual disability


1 Department of Special Education (Intellectual Disability) Government Rehabilitation Institute for Intellectual Disabilities (GRIID), Chandigarh, India
2 Professor in Special Education (Intellectual Disability) Institute of Special Education, Sweekaar Academy of Rehabilitation Sciences, Secunderabad, Telangana, India

Date of Web Publication29-Mar-2018

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Wasim Ahmad
Department of Special Education, Government Rehabilitation Institute for Intellectual Disabilities, Sector-31-C, Chandigarh - 160 030
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijsp.ijsp_118_17

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  Abstract 


Background: During the past two decades, self-determination has emerged as an important concept in education, progress, and services delivery for persons with disabilities. Objective: This study attempted to find out the effect of teacher's training on enhancing self-determination among individuals with intellectual disability (IID) with respect to gender and age. Sample: IID (n = 50) were intervened by the trained special educators. Design: Single group pre- and post-test design has been used. Tool: Self Determination Scale for Adults with Mental Retardation was utilized for collection of data. Results: The data collected was analyzed using the statistical techniques such as t-test, ANCOVA, and post hoc Tukey test. The results show that the training has a remarkable impact on self-determination among IID. Conclusion: The findings have shown that there is a significant effect of teacher's training on enhancing self-determination among IID.

Keywords: Intellectual disability, self-determination, teacher's training


How to cite this article:
Ahmad W, Thressiakutty A T. Effect of teacher's training on enhancing self-determination among individuals with intellectual disability. Indian J Soc Psychiatry 2018;34:16-20

How to cite this URL:
Ahmad W, Thressiakutty A T. Effect of teacher's training on enhancing self-determination among individuals with intellectual disability. Indian J Soc Psychiatry [serial online] 2018 [cited 2018 Jun 22];34:16-20. Available from: http://www.indjsp.org/text.asp?2018/34/1/16/228785




  Self Determination Top


It is the belief that people with disabilities have the right and ability to choose and control their own quality of life, their own goals and dreams, and what services they need to obtain them. The opportunities to make choices, express preferences, experience control over outcomes, take risks and assume responsibility for personal actions are highly prized by most people. Researchers suggest that individuals with higher level of self-determination are more independent and have a better quality of life. It also enhances their performance in academic areas as well.[1]

Taking an active part and responsibilities in one's own life is not always easy, particularly at adolescence, which is a very important period in which people progressively find their identity and life projects.[2] Self-determination is a concept reflecting the belief that individuals have the right to direct their own lives. Individuals with intellectual disability (IID), who have self-determination skills, have stronger chances of being successful in making the transition to adulthood including employment and independence.[3] A self-determined person sets goals, makes decisions, see options, solves problems, speaks up for himself, and understands what supports are needed for success and knows how to evaluate outcomes.[4]


  Need and Significance Top


Self-determination has become a core concern in the field of special education for the past few decades, particularly for adolescents with developmental disabilities including intellectual disability. It is believed that individuals with intellectual disabilities who are self-determined are more likely to succeed as adults in all walks of life which promote their quality of life.

Numerous research studies have been conducted on self-determination among IID at international level. The possibility of exercising self-advocacy also has been proved by data-based studies. However, in India, still the concept remains new, and the attitude of professionals and parents are not much on positive side. As a result of the underestimation of the ability level of IID, parents and professionals have apprehensions in introducing new concepts such as self-determination and self-advocacy. The self-determination is very important for everybody in day-to-day life. In general, individuals learn these skills through opportunities, exposure, imitation, and intuition but for the IID, it is difficult to perform the same due to sub-average intelligence.[5]

Aims and objectives

To find out the effect of teacher's training on enhancing self-determination among IID with respect to gender and age.


  Methods Top


Sample

Purposive sampling has been employed for the selection of the samples. Twenty-five special educators were selected from various special schools of Coimbatore District, Tamil Nadu, for giving training to the students with intellectual disability. A total of 50 IID were selected and allotted to special educators of the same schools, and each special educator was given two individuals with ID for providing them intervention on self-determination. Following were the inclusion criteria for sample selection:

  • Age group: IID with 14 years and above
  • Gender: Male and female
  • Level: Mild intellectual disability (IQ 50–69)
  • Functional academics preferably at second-class level.


Design

The experimental design under single group pre- and post-test has been adopted to carry out the present study.

Tool

The Self Determination Scale for Adults with Mental Retardation (SDSAMR) developed by Keshwal and Thressiakutty (2011) was used for the present study. The scale has 36 items distributed in five domains, namely, personal management (12 items), community participation (6), recreation and leisure time (6), choice-making (6), and problem-solving (6). The SDSAMR scale is a valid tool, and its reliability and validity have been established and published in the journal. The SDSAMR is a self-administrated scale by the adults with mild intellectual disability. It is important for the administrator to check the current level in functional academics and communication so that appropriate assistance can be provided to the subjects while administering the scale. The first four domains of SDSAMR have five choices expressed in terms of “stars” 4 - stars for always; 3 - stars for most of the times; 2 - stars for sometimes; 1 - star for rarely or with assistance, and no star for no exposure at all. In the fifth domain (problem-solving), four options were provided in a hierarchical order. The first, second, third, and fourth option were given the score of 4, 3, 2, and 1, respectively. The scoring is done domain-wise as well as the sum of all the five domains.[6]

Procedure

Before the collection of data, permission was sought from the heads and incharge/s of the schools. Informed consent was sought from IID and their Teachers. The selected special educators were provided with sufficient orientation by the investigator, about the concept of self-determination, tool administration, and self-determination training to IID. The participants were explained the aims and objectives of the study. The pretest data were collected using self-administered tool – SDSAMR. Each participant received the scale and voluntarily completed it. Then, training to the IID on self-determination was given for a total of 50 sessions (3 months). After completion of the training, as the posttest, the sample was again given the same scale to rate their level of self-determination. The collected data was analyzed by applying paired sample t-test ANCOVA and Post Hoc (LSD) Tukey test.


  Results Top


In this study, the trained special educators (n = 25) imparted the training to IID (n = 50) on self-determination (personal management, community participation, recreation and leisure time, choice-making, and problem-solving). The collected data has been analyzed, interpreted, and presented below:

[Table 1] depicts the comparison of pre- and post-tests mean and standard deviation (SD) obtained by the selected sample (n = 50) on the overall and its areas of self-determination. The calculated t value of personal management, community participation, recreation and leisure time, choice-making, and problem-solving was 13.9, 11.6, 13.3, 10.6, and 9.26, respectively. The overall results of self-determination also show significant difference (16.6, P < 0.01).
Table 1: Comparison of pre- and post-tests means and standard deviation of overall and area wise self-determination

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[Table 2] summarized the comparison of overall and area-wise mean and SD of IID on self-determination with respect to gender. The calculated F value of personal management, community participation, recreation and leisure time, choice-making, and problem solving were F = 1.20, F = 1.44, F = 0.28, F = 0.51, and F = 0.08, respectively. The overall results of self-determination with respect to gender also show no significant difference (F = 2.37, P > 0.05).
Table 2: Results of ANCOVA on post test mean scores of overall and area wise self-determination with respect to age

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[Table 3] and [Table 4] shows the results of overall and area wise mean and SD of IID on self-determination with respect to age. The calculated F value of personal management, community participation, recreation and leisure time, choice-making, and problem solving were F = 8.60, F = 7.49, F = 2.02, F = 3.36, and F = 6.95, respectively. There is a significant difference in all the areas (personal management, community participation, choice- making, and problem solving) except recreation and leisure time. However, overall results of self-determination with respect to gender show no significant difference (F =0.798, P > 0.05). To find out the areas where the significant difference has been seen within the group, the post hoc analysis was done. It indicated that which pair, (G1G2, G1G3, and G2G3) is really significant. The difference in means between G1 and G3 was 3.88 (P< 0.01) and between G2 and G3 was 2.71 (P< 0.05) were significant. However, the mean difference of 1.17 between G1 and G2 was not significant, indicating that the personal management is not differing between these two groups. Similarly, the mean between G1 and G3 was 2.96 (P< 0.01) and between G2 and G3 was 1.71 (P< 0.05) and were found to be significant. However, the mean difference of 1.25 between G1 and G2 was not significant, indicating that the community participation is not differing between G1 and G2. The difference in mean between G1 and G3 was 1.8 (P< 0.05), and it is significant at 5% level. The difference in other two pairs that is between G1 and G2 1.29 and between G2 and G3 0.51 were not significant, indicating that the choice-making is not differing between these two pairs of groups. Similarly, the difference in means between G1 and G3 was 2.76 (P< 0.05) and between G2 and G3 was 1.80 (P< 0.05) were significant. However, the mean difference of 0.96 between Group 1 and G2 was not significant, indicating that the problem-solving is not differing between these two groups. It could be inferred from the results that the training improved the performance among the selected samples on self-determination irrespective of their age.
Table 3: Results of ANCOVA of post test mean scores of area wise and overall self-determination with respect to age

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Table 4: Post hoc analysis: Pairwise comparisons of posttest mean scores of personal management, community participation, choice-making and problem-solving with respect to age

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  Discussion Top


The difference in the performance on the self-determination is due to the training given to the IID. The inferences are supported by the study which examined the extent to which individuals experience personal autonomy and may provide a crucial measure of the attainment of a more normalized lifestyle. Results were discussed in terms of the need to operationalize meaningful improvements in the lives of persons with intellectual disability that go beyond the appearance of the physical environment. This study reveals the need for creating opportunities which would help the IID to make decisions by their own.[7] Another study suggests that even the youngest students with diverse learning needs were able to set goals and use self-determined learning model of instruction. Teachers used the model effectively to support the investigation of student interests, the facilitation of choices, and the goal setting and attainment of young children.[8] The results of the study are also in agreement with the above inference, i.e., 17 of the 19 students, made dramatic changes from baseline to intervention conditions, at levels that exceeded teachers' expectations as a result of the self-determined learning model of instruction.[9] The study conducted on community living preferences of four institutionalized adults with mild intellectual disability. Individuals then were taught to obtain information regarding their preferences during tours of community group homes, to report that information to their social workers, and to evaluate the homes based on the information obtained. The results indicated that people with intellectual disability can take an active role in major lifestyle decisions that others have typically made for them. Since choice-making is one of the components of self-determination, it was understood from the study that even individuals with mild intellectual disability have the capacity to prefer their choices of living similar to those without intellectual disability.[10] The finding of the present study fails to explore any study which supports the age difference. It is inferred that there is no significant difference in the problem-solving scores with reference to gender.[11] The impact of the self-determined career development model (SDCDM) on the job performance of four adults with moderate intellectual disabilities employed in competitive work settings. Employees learned to set work-related goals, develop an action plan, implement the plan, and adjust their goals and plans as needed. Using multiple baseline design on four participants, the self-selected goal at levels that exceeded their supervisor and job coach expectations achieved. Findings extend the current line of research utilizing the SDCDM and support the use of the model by personnel providing support to individuals with disabilities in work settings.[12]

Implications

The findings of the study have some distinct implications in the habilitation process of IID. The knowledge gained through this study is of immense use as it declares that there is a positive impact on self-determination among IID by training the special educators. The special educators are the actual implementers of any training or skills for IID. Therefore, the need was felt to train the special educators.

  1. The self-determination for IID is relatively new concept particularly in Indian context where it is not being practised widely. It is better to have the implementation of self-determination in the schools as the present study advocates for the same
  2. This study enabled the special educators with the adequate knowledge and skills to assess, implement, and train on self-determination among IID.


Scope of the future research

Every research always aims to solve some question, but when it ripens at the conclusion, number of new problems and issues emerges. This has given a new direct to future research based on the conclusion of the present study. The following suggestions are made for future research:

  1. The current experiment was on single group pre- and post-test design. The effect of teacher's training on enhancing self-determination among IID can be more accurately evaluated if the research design is modified having a control group.
  2. This study was based on a single disability target group. Children with autism, cerebral palsy, or other disability areas such as hearing impairment or visual impairment can be trained to enhance their self-determination skills by designing such specialized training program keeping the present as a model.
  3. The present investigation has been conducted with 25 special educators and 50 IID. There is a wide scope to conduct this research on a large sample to have a wide generalization and better applicability.
  4. This study throws lights on self-determination training, and there is a scope to conduct a comparative study on employed and unemployed IID.


Limitations

  1. It was a single group pre- and post-test design study. There was no control group to compare the results
  2. The duration of the training for IID was for 3 months only.



  Conclusion Top


Review of literature shows that there is a wide scope of research in this area in our country as well as in abroad since there is no much data-based studies found by the researcher. As it is considered as the major need of hour, promoting self-determination has to be an integral part of the curriculum of students with intellectual disability. The real sense of self determination can be achieved when it will be put into practice. In the current study, the effect of teacher's training has been seen in enhancing self-determination among IID. As the era has been changed from segregation to inclusion, self-determination is very much important to lead a successful, self-esteemed, and dignified life. The present study has brought a positive effect among the IID through teacher's training on enhancing self-determination and suggests the need to carry out further training for the better quality of life and independence of IID.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Agran M, Hughes C. Introduction to special issue: Self-determination reexamined: How far have we come? Res Pract Persons Severe Disabl 2005;30:105-7.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Wehmeyer ML. Self-Determination and individuals with significant disabilities: Examining meanings and misinterpretations. Res Pract Persons Severe Disabl 1998;23:5-16.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Wehmeyer ML, Schwartz M. Self-determination and positive adult outcomes: A follow-up study of youth with mental retardation or learning disabilities. J Except Child 1997;63:245-55.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Martin JE, Marshall LH. Choice maker: Infusing self-determination instruction into the IEP and transition process. In: Sands DJ, Wehmeyer ML, editors. Self-Determination Across the Life Span. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes; 1996. p. 215-36.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Ahmad W, Thressiakutty AT. Developing self determination through audio visuals among individuals with intellectual disability. J Disabil Manag Spec Educ 2011;2:52-63.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Keshwal H, Thressiakutty AT. Effect of self-directed IEP on development of self-determination in special employees with mild mental retardation. J Disabil Manag Spec Educ 2011;1:56-69.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Kishi G, Teelucksingh B, Zollers N, Park-Lee S, Meyer L. Daily decision-making in community residences: A social comparison of adults with and without mental retardation. Am J Ment Retard 1988;92:430-5.  Back to cited text no. 7
[PUBMED]    
8.
Palmer SB, Wehmeyer ML. Promoting self-determination in early elementary school teaching self-regulated problem-solving and goal-setting skills. Remedial Spec Educ 2003;24:115-26.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Agran M, Blanchard C, Wehmeyer ML. Promoting transition goals and self-determination through student self-directed learning: The self-determined learning model of instruction. Educ Train Ment Retard Dev Disabl 2000;35:351-64.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
Faw GD, Davis PK, Peck C. Increasing self-determination: Teaching people with mental retardation to evaluate residential options. J Appl Behav Anal 1996;29:173-88.  Back to cited text no. 10
[PUBMED]    
11.
Wehmeyer ML, Kelchner K, Richards S. Essential characteristics of self-determined behavior of individuals with mental retardation. Am J Ment Retard 1996;100:632-42.  Back to cited text no. 11
[PUBMED]    
12.
Devlin P. Enhancing the job performance of employees with disabilities using the self-determined career development model. Educ Train Dev Disabil 2008;43:502-13.  Back to cited text no. 12
    



 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]



 

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  In this article
Abstract
Self Determination
Need and Signifi...
Methods
Results
Discussion
Conclusion
References
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