Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  Tansey, T. N.,Bezyak, J., Chan, F., Leahy, M.J., & Lui, J. (2014). Social-cognitive predictors of readiness to use evidence based practice: A survey of state vocational rehabilitation counselors. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 41 127-136.
Title:  Social-cognitive predictors of readiness to use evidence based practice: A survey of state vocational rehabilitation counselors
Authors:  Tansey, T. N.,Bezyak, J., Chan, F., Leahy, M.J., & Lui, J.
Year:  2014
Journal/Publication:  Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation
Publisher:  IOS Press
Full text:   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  Yes
Research design:  Survey research

Structured abstract:

Background:  People with disabilities have high rates of unemployment. Researchers need to partner with professionals in state agency Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) to develop evidence based practices across all its programs. Currently, there are very few to guide VR practices aimed at improving work outcomes. Furthermore, VR practitioners may not be aware of what evidence exists, or how its has evolved. This leads to not using evidence based practice, inconsistent use or variations in application. Knowledge translation can help overcome these and other challenges and gives practitioners the information needed to provide the most effective VR services. Research or the knowledge must be translated into relevant information. Furthermore, to initiate new research or implement best practices a baseline of VR counselors current understanding is required.
Purpose:  This aim of this study was to assess what VR professionals know about evidence-based practices. More specific the researchers were interested in perceived self efficacy, outcome expectancy, barriers, and readiness to use evidence.
Setting:  Not stated
Study sample:  A total of 396 vocational rehabilitation counselors were recruited from four State VR agencies. States included: Maryland, Mississippi, Texas and Utah. The majority were white/non hispanic (58%). The average age of the participants was 44 years. A majority or 82% of the sample had a Masters Degree. The mean number of years on the job was 7.99 years.
Intervention:  There was no intervention.
Control or comparison condition:  There was no control of comparison.
Data collection and analysis:  An Evidence-based Practice in Vocational Rehabilitation Survey (EBP-VR Survey) was developed. The instrument included 37 items and four subscales: perceived self-efficacy, perceived benefits, perceived barriers, and stages of change. Ratings were based upon ten point Likert scales. Missing data was handled using an imputation method instead of case deletion. Descriptive statistics, one way analysis of variance, and multiple regression analysis were computed using SPSS version 18.
Findings:  Moderately high self efficacy in the use of evidence based practice was reported with an average score of 6.75. Moderately high outcome expectancy, 6.74, was also reported. This seems to indicate that the rehabilitation counselors believe they possess the knowledge and skills to implement evidence based practice by modifying their practice behaviors and agree that the use of these could improve quality of services and employment outcomes for people with disabilities. Moderately low levels of barriers to the use of evidence based practice was reported at 3.90. Agency and personal barriers were not seen as problematic. Agency barriers like a lack of support from senior management and a lack of knowledge about evidenced based practice among supervisors were reported as most significant. The average rating about readiness to use evidence based practice was 5.61, the lowest of all sub-scales.
Conclusions:  Vocational rehabilitation counselors understand the importance of using evidence based practice but face agency barriers. Self efficacy and outcome expectancy are positively associated with readiness to use evidence based practice. Agency and personal barriers are negatively related to readiness to use.

Outcomes:  Other