Education K-12 M.A.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Elliott, Nathan


Students with significant developmental disabilities demonstrate different strengths and needs than typically developing students. These students’ skills in the areas of academics, communication, fine and gross motor, daily living skills, adaptive/functional skills, etc. are significantly discrepant from their same-age non-disabled peers. Because of this, students with such high needs should not be expected to learn the same way as their peers. Instruction for students with significant disabilities must be individualized. Communication strategies, teaching techniques, and technology are critical for individualizing instruction for students with significant disabilities. The structured teaching approach provides students with the visual and concrete instruction they need through work systems. Work systems teach students new tasks by articulating the task or activity the student is supposed to complete, how much work is required during the specific work period, how the student knows that the activity is finished, and what happens next. The application portion combines the evidence-based strategies reviewed in the literature to create an individualized work system for a student with significant needs.

Degree Name

Education K-12 M.A.

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis