Exploring Differences in the Content of Job Interviews between Youth with and without a Physical Disability

Authors: Lucca, A. M., Henry, A. D., Banks, S., Simon, L., & Page, S.
Year Published 2015
Publication PLOS ONE
Volume 10
Number 3
Publisher PLOS ONE

This study looked at the similarities and differences among youth with disabilities on a mock job interview compared to their typically developing peers. Understanding the content of job interviews may highlight areas where individuals with disabilities perform differently than those with typical development and how these areas may present barriers to employment.


The purpose of this research is to inform employment readiness programs and educate employers about the potential challenges associated with this recruitment method for those with disabilities.


This study is part of a larger, multi-method, cross-sectional observational study on employment readiness among youth with disabilities.


Employers and employment counselors (n = 19), and youth (n = 31) were interviewed for this study.

Data Collection

This study recruited youth through the use of advertisements at a pediatric rehabilitation hospital and community centers. Information packages were also sent to youth who were thought to meet the inclusion criteria.


There was no control for this study.


The study found several similarities and differences between youth with disabilities and typically developing youth. For youth with disabilities, differences in job interview answers included: (1) disclosing their condition; (2) giving fewer examples related to customer service and teamwork skills; (3) experiencing greater challenges in providing feedback to team members and responding to scenario-based problem solving questions; and (4) drawing on examples from past work, volunteer and extracurricular activities.


Clinicians and educators should help youth recognize their marketable skills and how to highlight those skills in an interview. Employers should recognize that the experiences of youth with disabilities may be different than typically developing youth.

URL http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article/file?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0122084&type=printable
Disabilities No specific disability
Populations Male & Female
Outcomes Employment acquisition
Research Design Qualitative
Peer Reviewed Yes