Self determination

Self-determination means making choices to live your life the way you want to. In these resources, learn more about how people with intellectual and developmental disabilities can increase their self-determination and lead more fulfilling lives.

44 Series - Financial Well-Being: Reframing the Conversation

Watch the archived webinar here. When looking for a new job, it’s logical to “do the math.” We consider what we need (food, housing, healthcare) and what we want (gym membership, car, vacation). We balance potential income against expenses. Finally, we evaluate whether a particular job will help us achieve our goals. Benefits can be a lifeline, but continuous reliance on them can limit people to a life in poverty.

44 Series - Informed Choice and Employment First: What does it Really Mean?

Listen to the archived webinar here. This webinar looked at the subject of informed choice. What considerations come into play when someone with IDD “chooses work”? What information and exposure or exploration does someone need to decide to leave a familiar setting, such as a sheltered workshop or day program, to work in their community?

Delphi Panel Findings #4: Education and Training for Job Seekers

This is the fourth in a series of briefs on the findings from a Delphi process conducted by the Employment Learning Community in 2013–2014. More information on the Employment Learning Community and the Delphi process can be found in Brief #1 (Introduction, Values, and Overall Themes). This brief focuses on the role of education and training for job seekers with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), which was the third-ranked overarching priority among the Delphi panel members.

Choosing Employment: Factors that Impact Employment Decisions for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

Little is known about the factors that shape the employment-related decisions of individuals with Intellectual and/or Developmental Disabilities (ID/DD). This article presents findings from qualitative interviews with individuals with ID/DD, their family members and employment-support professionals from four Community Rehabilitation Providers (CRPs) throughout Massachusetts. Recognizing the value of participatory action research, this study also included a co-researcher with ID/DD who participated in all facets of the research process.

The Influential Role of the Job Developer: Increasing Self-Determination and Family Involvement Through the Job Search

Job developers can influence decision-making during the job search and placement process. For a study exploring the employment decisions of people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD), researchers interviewed 16 individuals with IDD, their family members, and professionals involved in their job search. Participants were asked what factors, circumstances, or people affected their decisions about work. The job developer was consistently named the most influential person in the job-search process.

Supporting Employment Choices: Lessons Learned

Little is known about the factors that influence employment-related choice-making for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). As a result, research staff from the Institute for Community Inclusion interviewed 16 individuals with IDD at four community rehabilitation providers (CRPs) throughout Massachusetts, along with their family members and employment professionals.

Massachusetts: Using a Collaborative, Person-Centered Approach to Facilitate Community Employment

The Northeast Region Supported Employment Project was developed by the North Shore area office of the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services in 2007. This pilot program, open to any individual with ID/DD who wanted to work, emphasized a person- centered planning approach to achieving the individuals' goals for employment in the community. The project emphasized the individual's choice of employment providers, collaboration with the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC), and use of an independent facilitator to support career and life planning.