Choice Versus Transition: The College Choice Process for Students With Disabilities
Author(s): Murrary, T. A., Schultz, S. M., & Cabrera, N. L.
Citation: Murrary, T. A., Schultz, S. M., & Cabrera, N. L. (2016). Choice Versus Transition: The College Choice Process for Students With Disabilities. Journal of The First-Year Experience & Students in Transition, 28(2), 115-135.
While there is little empirical research regarding how the college choice process unfolds for students with disabilities, Webb (2000) developed a five-stage transition model for this population. In this study, we sought to identify the overlap as well as the specific points of departure that Webb’s model has with traditional college choice models. Using survey results of two entering cohorts at the University of Arizona, we found similarities and differences between students with and without disabilities in the way they accessed higher education. The results demonstrate that while there was some overlap, students with disabilities had distinct paths to higher education relative to students without disabilities. This study highlights the need for systematic support for students with disabilities in the college-going process while reconceptualizing choice and transition as overlapping—rather than separate—theories.