Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  Magill-Evans, J., Galambos, N., Darrah, J., & Nickerson, C. (2008). Predictors of employment for young adults with developmental motor disabilities. Work, 31 (4), 433-442.
Title:  Predictors of employment for young adults with developmental motor disabilities
Authors:  Magill-Evans, J., Galambos, N., Darrah, J., & Nickerson, C.
Year:  2008
Journal/Publication:  Work
Publisher:  IOS Press
Full text:   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  No
Research design:  Mixed methods

Structured abstract:

Background:  Though much has been done for disability advocacy there is little knowledge about how to successfully facilitate employment in persons with non-degenerative motor disabilities such as cerebral palsy or spina bifida. Past research has shown that 20 to 31% of Canadians with cerebral palsy or spina bifida were working full time and 16 to 23% were working part time. Individuals with motor disabilities are significantly less likely to be employed than their non-disabled peers.
Purpose:  The purpose of this study was to examine the factors that contribute to employment for young adults with motor disabilities.
Study sample:  Seventy-six participants with motor disabilities (35 males, 41 females) took part in the study. All participants were aged between 20-30 years and had either cerebral palsy (n=54) or spina bifida (n=22).
Data collection and analysis:  All participants completed questionnaires designed to measure task coping, depression, family functioning, and family fostering of autonomy. Participants were also interviewed and asked about educational attainment, employment history, income, transition services, and transportation. A qualitative element was also a part of this study. During the interviews participants were asked about job preparation services, what made a job right for them, jobs that didn’t work out, and finding jobs that correlate to education and abilities. The interviewers were probing for barriers to employment. Hierarchal regression analysis was used on the quantitative data to determine barriers and facilitators to employment.
Findings:  Females, those with lower IQ scores, and those that were dependent on others for transportation were less likely to be employed. Participants often felt that there was little room for advancement and few options for other work among those that were employed.
Conclusions:  These findings underscore the significance of transportation in employment outcomes among young adults with motor disabilities. Vocational rehabilitation counselors should be aware of other issues such as gender that could present barriers to employment.

Disabilities served:  Cerebral palsy
Outcomes:  Other