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Study Information

Research Project #1: A Prospective Study of the Relationship between the Amount and Type of VR Services and the Employment Outcomes of Individuals with ASD (Dr. David Dean)

This project will look at information gathered from administrative records of all individuals applying for services to the Virginia Department of Rehabilitative Services (DRS) during state Fiscal Year 2007 (July 1, 2006 - June 30, 2007). Specifically, data will be gathered to determine the impact of VR involvement on individual’s earnings.

Research Project #2: A Collaborative Public/Private Employment Training and Placement Model for Transition Age Youth with ASD (Dr. John Kregel, Jennifer McDonough, Dr. Carol Schall)

This project will test the efficacy of two different models of employment and training for young adults with significant support needs through a random clinical trial. Three dependent measures will be investigated: (1) employment status upon completion of the program and then again at 90 days post completion, (2) wage upon completion, and (3) number of hours worked per week upon completion.

Project Overview and Case Studies - Read More | Download PDF

Research Project #3: Identifying Effective Components of a Collaborative Career Planning Model for Individuals with ASD in Postsecondary Education Settings (Liz Getzel)

This study will look to identify the effective components of a collaborative career planning model based on the input of college students with ASD, VR counselors, Disability Support Service (DSS) providers in 2 and 4 year colleges and universities, and postsecondary education career center staff members.

The study will survey members of the Virginia Higher Education Leadership Partners (VA HELP) to determine the number of students with ASD receiving services through Disability Support Services offices and the services and supports provided to these individuals. Next, structured interviews with college students with ASD to assess their experiences in post-secondary education, current status of their career planning and preparation, and current satisfaction with support services and accommodations will be completed. Then the results of the student interviews will be used to construct an on-line survey that will be used to assess the knowledge of VR counselors, Disability Support Services providers, and post-secondary Career Planning and Placement providers regarding their role the career preparation of post-secondary students with ASD and their need for additional training in this area. Finally, the results of the survey and assistance from our partnering organizations will be used to develop a series of on-line training modules.

Research Project #4: ASDATC (Autism Spectrum Disorder Assistive Technology for Cognition) Project: Demonstrating the Effectiveness Handheld Computers as Assistive Technology in Job Support for Individuals with ASD (Dr. Tony Gentry)

This project will look at how a PDA can be used by individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder who receive DRS-affiliated job coaching services. Participants in this Randomized Controlled Trial will be given a PDA at either the beginning of their job or 3 months into their job. Each individual will be assessed for (a) task performance, (2) job satisfaction, (3) employer satisfaction, (4) earnings, and (5) hours of job training.

ASDATAC Project: A Randomized Controlled Trial of the Apple IPod Touch as Task Support Among People with ASD on the Job- Read more | Download PDF

If you would like more information on any of the VCU ASD Career Links studies, please contact:

Jennifer McDonough
Project Coordinator


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VCU Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Workplace Supports and Job Retention
Virginia Commonwealth University
Virginia Commonwealth University |
This project is funded by the Disability and Rehabilitation Research Project (DRRP) grant #H133B080027 from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR).
VCU Rehabilitation Research and Training Center
1314 West Main Street | P.O. Box 842011 | Richmond, Virginia 23284-2011
Phone: (804) 828-1851 | TTY: (804) 828-2494 | Fax: (804) 828-2193
Last updated: 12/22/2014