Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Does job coaching really work?

CV clipart

Can a government-sponsored job coaching program for individuals with intellectual disabilities really help someone get a job?

That’s what a team of USC researchers wanted to find out when they looked into a statewide job-coaching program offered through the S.C. Department of Disabilities and Special Needs (DDSN).

“We’ve been collecting data on special needs–individuals in South Carolina for 13 years, focusing on both prevention of disabilities and quality of life issues,” said Suzanne McDermott, a professor in the School of Medicine’s Department of Family and Preventive Medicine. “As we turned our attention to people with intellectual disabilities who want to earn a real wage, we wondered if government-supported job coaching programs really work—are the programs any more effective than someone just going out and finding a job without assistance?”

The question is particularly relevant for South Carolina, which administers a federally mandated job coaching effort to assist the roughly 10,000 citizens who have intellectual disabilities and the basic abilities to hold down a job.

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