Title

College Students with Disabilities: The Relationship Between Student Characteristics, the Academic Environment, and Performance

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

The Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability

Volume

30

Issue

3

Publication Date

9-8-2017

First Page

209

Last Page

221

Abstract

Increasing numbers of individuals with disabilities are pursuing postsecondary education and training to assist them in achieving satisfying careers and sustainable earnings. Unfortunately, students with disabilities face numerous challenges leading to less than desirable college completion outcomes, with lower rates than their peers without disabilities. As a result of this disparity, there is a growing interest in the factors predicting academic success for students with disabilities. The purpose of this study was to examine modifiable factors (i.e., peer support, disability services, faculty teaching, campus climate, and self-advocacy) as potential predictors of higher academic performance for college students with disabilities. Three hundred and twenty-five students with disabilities from three large universities completed an online survey and participated in this study. Findings indicated that only one modifiable factor: self-advocacy, predicts higher grade point average. Implications for secondary and postsecondary professionals are discussed.

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