Vocational rehabilitation services and employment outcomes for people with disabilities: A United States study

Authors: Employment outcomes of transition-aged adults with autism spectrum disorder: A state of the states report
Year Published 2008
Publication Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation
Volume 18
Number 4
Pages 326-334
Publisher Springer Science+Business Media, LLC

Work is fundamental to the physical and psychological well-being of all people. The United States state-federal vocational rehabilitation programs spend more than $2.5 billion annually. Understanding the factors and service patterns that contribute to successful employment outcomes will help enhance services.


The purpose of the study is to identify key factors associated with successful employment outcomes for people with sensory/communicative, physical, and mental impairments in the United States.


This study included individuals with disabilities served by multiple vocational rehabilitation agencies in various settings.


Data for this study were extracted from the fiscal year 2005 RSA-911 Case Service Report. The sample includes 5,000 clients from each disability group (sensory/communicative, physical, and mental impairments) whose cases were closed as either rehabilitated or not rehabilitated.

Data Collection

Data extracted from the RSA-911 data were analyzed using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). Logistic regression analysis was used to examine the association among demographic characteristics, provision of cash or medical benefits, VR service patterns, and employment outcomes. (p. 328)


Comparison of cases that were closed rehabilitated to those that were closed not rehabilitated.


Individuals with sensory/communicative impairments had the highest employment rate (75%) compared to 56% for the physical impairments group and 55% for those with mental impairments. Job placement, on-the-job support, maintenance, and other services were identified as significant predictors of employment success.


This study provides some empirical support documenting the association between vocational rehabilitation services and employment outcomes of people with disabilities. (p. 326)

URL https://www.researchgate.net/publication/23449787_Vocational_Rehabilitation_Services_and_Employment_Outcomes_for_People_with_Disabilities_A_United_States_Study
Disabilities Emotional disturbance | Intellectual disabilities | Orthopedic impairments | Speech or language impairments
Populations Male & Female
Outcomes Employment acquisition
NIDILRR Funded Yes
Research Design Observational
Peer Reviewed Yes