Evaluating a pilot education-to-work program for adults with Down syndrome

Denise E. De Souza, Athena Vongalis-Macrow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Low employment rates of individuals with intellectual disabilities in Australia stem from apprehensions about their abilities to engage in work, and employers’ low confidence in hiring them in paid positions. Drawing on principles of evaluative reasoning, this paper reports on findings from a mixed-methods formative evaluation. It was conducted to understand the need for a two-year Education-to-Work training program, the quality of its content, and the views that 8 parents, 5 facilitators, and 4 students had about changes attributable to the program after its first year. Program performance was assessed against the quality standards of excellent, good, satisfactory, marginal, and needs improvement. Findings from the evaluation highlighted the potential usefulness of post-secondary education (PSE) transitioning programs to secure longer term employment, for adults with Down syndrome. Specific recommendations are made to improve the quality of the program, and abstractions gleaned from the study are highlighted.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberhttps://doi.org/10.1016/j.stueduc.2021.101016
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalStudies in Educational Evaluation
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021


  • Down syndrome
  • Employment training program
  • Formative evaluation
  • Intellectual and development disability or IDD
  • Needs assessment
  • Program evaluation


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