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Technologies for Self-Determination for Youth with Developmental Disabilities

By: James R. Skouge, Mary L. Kelly, Kelly D. Roberts, David W. Leake, and Robert A. Stodden

Abstract: This paper focuses on “technologies for voice” that are related to the self-determination of youth with developmental disabilities. The authors describe a self-determination model that values family-focused, community-referenced pedagogies employing “new media” to give voice to youth and their families. In line with the adage that a picture is worth a thousand words, many youth and families find they are better able to convey their life situations and express their hopes and fears using multimedia (e.g., camcorders, voice recorders, digital cameras, PowerPoint) to find their voices in transition and IEP planning meetings. Systematic strategies are described to support teachers and other youth advocates employing multimedia technologies as tools of self-determination.
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