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Faculty Attitudes and Practices Regarding Students with Disabilities: Two Decades After Implementati... - page 25 / 67





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lessons, the percentage of target self-advocacy behaviors used in role plays in unfamiliar academic courses steadily grew to 77% to 100% implementation during the posttest. Person C was somewhat less proficient in self-advocacy in the closing phases of the training, but he still demonstrated 77% to 82% mastery of the 17 skills in the last three measurements. As a result of the training during the lessons, participants learned how to advocate for their classroom needs in unfamiliar course settings (e.g., in a physical science or communications class with the trainer playing the role of a faculty member).

Presenting results from the extended generalization test., Figure 3 shows convincing evidence of the participants' ability to self-advocate. Their ability to request classroom accommodations from an unfamiliar person for a different academic course steadily grew from 25% to 40% in the first measure taken before training (Time 1) to 80% to 90% at Times 4 and 5 (i.e., after lesson 6 and 14 to 20 days after training which suggests that students maintained the skills for at least a 2 to 3 week period). Significantly, all 3 of the participants implemented the skills in a steady ascent, with Person C's extended generalization performance comparing favorably with the performance of the other two students. Hence, results in Figure 3 are indicative of both acquisition and maintenance of the skills, as well as of generalization to new situations comparable to the actual behavior setting in which the participants are expected to perform.

Based on pretest/posttest assessments, the students made significant improvements in their performance of the 17 target self-advocacy behaviors. Prior to introduction of the seven advocacy lessons, participants spontaneously used from less than 10% to about 35% of the target behaviors in requesting classroom accommodations in a U.S. history class from an actual faculty member. Use of the skills increased to a range of 70% to 90% on the posttests in a behavior setting closely mirroring the demands in an actual academic situation. Again, the results suggest that the students have the ability to generalize the advocacy skills to a veridical situation, that is, in an interchange involving a person they knew to be a faculty member.


Self-advocacy skill training had positive effects on the acquisition, maintenance and generalization of the target behaviors. Of course, in vivo measures would also be of value to determine the extent to which students use the skills in discussing classroom accommodation needs with their actual instructors (Durlak, Rose, & Bursuck, 1994). Although promising for all participants, the results indicated that Person C did not always demonstrate skill acquisition and maintenance comparable to the other two participants. His performance, in part, depended on the severity of his arthritis symptoms that, at one point, became so severe that he needed to drop out of the program. Nevertheless, the self-advocacy training approach was flexible enough to allow him to resume instruction at a later date.

Throughout the training, the authors worked on a number of style considerations. One individual spoke in a very soft voice, which was, in part, a function of his disability. Instructors encouraged this participant to increase voice volume as much as possible. Pacing and timing in the use of the skills in relation to the conversational "give and

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