Using Ego Network Analysis as an Indicator of the Effectiveness of Postsecondary Education Programs

Session Number: 2508
Track: Disabilities and Underrepresented Populations
Session Type: Poster
Tags: disabilities and other vulnerable popula
First Author or Discussion Group Leader: Patricia Spencer [Graduate Research Assistant - University of South Alabama]
Second Author or Discussion Group Leader: James Van Haneghan [Professor - University of South Alabama]
Third Author or Discussion Group Leader: Abigail Baxter [Professor - University of South Alabama]
Fourth Author or Discussion Group Leader: Alexandra Chanto-Wetter [Assistant Director - University of South Alabama]
Time: Nov 13, 2019 (06:30 PM - 08:30 PM)
Room: Poster 38

Other Authors: Lindsey Meyer
Audience Level: All Audiences

Session Abstract (150 words): 

Postsecondary education programs for individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ID) strive to help provide students with ID independent living skills. One important element of independent living is the social interaction and support of a network of friends and acquaintances. Ego network analysis from both student and parent perspectives provides a way to formatively and summatively evaluate the social world of students with ID.  We present the networks of two cohorts (n=6) in a 2-year postsecondary certificate program that were analyzed at three times. Baseline data (T1) confirmed existing research that students begin with limited networks that expand considerably in the first year (T2), and stabilizes by the last year (T3), to reflect significant relationships.   The data suggests that the program provided a context to increase the size of students’ networks. However, whether students continue to maintain these networks once they leave the program and its supports is still an open question.