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Education and Employment Outcomes in Persons with Pediatric-Onset Spinal Cord Injury vs. Adult-Onset Spinal Cord Injury

Phillips, Ryan Lindsey (2006) Education and Employment Outcomes in Persons with Pediatric-Onset Spinal Cord Injury vs. Adult-Onset Spinal Cord Injury. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Employment is considered to be an important predictor of life satisfaction and success. Statistics on unemployment rates are of concern among our society, especially when the statistics involve individuals with disabilities. In an era where the American with Disabilities Act and Rehabilitation Act have pushed for the community and workforce to become more accessible, unemployment rates among individuals with disabilities still remain high. Spinal cord injury (SCI) is an interesting population in that individuals, who want to work, can work with the appropriate technology and accommodations. Yet, over half of the individuals with SCI who worked prior to their injury remain unemployed years later. Many of the past and current studies investigating employment recruit subjects who are at least 18 years of age, with some recruiting individuals who are 16 years of age. Children with disabilities have a plethora of resources and services offered to them within the school district. From Individualized Education Programs (IEP) to transition services, many individuals work with the child to help them become an active participant in society. This study looks specifically at SCI of pediatric-onset. Examining already existing data collected by the NSCID, we investigated: a) employment and education rates among individuals with pediatric-onset SCI (PO-SCI) compared with adult-onset SCI (AO-SCI); b) variables that may contribute to vocational outcomes among this population; and c) if acquiring an SCI at a young age is positively correlated with higher rates of employment and levels of education. Statistical results yielded no difference between PO-SCI and AO-SCI with respect to employment rates (working vs. not working). Differences were noted in level of education achieved between PO-SCI and AO-SCI, with individuals who had PO-SCI more likely to pursue additional education and higher levels of education post-injury. Results do indicate that post-injury level of education does correlate with post-injury employment status; higher levels of education yielded higher employment levels at follow-up. Results from the study also indicate that individuals with spinal cord injury, regardless of age at injury, still remain unemployed years after their injury. Rehabilitation counselors can play a crucial role in helping individuals with SCI overcome employment barriers.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Phillips, Ryan
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairBoninger, Michael Lboninger@pitt.eduBONINGER
Committee MemberMcCue, Michaelmmccue@pitt.eduMMCCUE
Committee MemberFitzgerald, Shirleysgf9@pitt.eduSGF9
Date: 5 January 2006
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 27 September 2005
Approval Date: 5 January 2006
Submission Date: 22 December 2005
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences > Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: rehabilitation counseling; transition
Other ID:, etd-12222005-101130
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 20:11
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:55


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