Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Susan MacDermott

Second Advisor

Becki Cohill

Third Advisor

Erin Schwier

Medical Subject Headings

Education, Special; Personal Autonomy; Occupational Therapy; Communication; Social Skills; Problem Solving; Program Development


It is becoming increasingly important for individuals to obtain post-secondary education in order to gain employment (Alverson et al., 2019; Chandroo et al., 2018). This increased importance to attend post-secondary education makes it imperative for students who are graduating from high school to be fully prepared for the transition to post-secondary education (Rothman et al., 2008). The transition from high school to post-secondary education is difficult for any individual. However, it is even more difficult for students with learning differences, as they tend to have problems in the areas of social skills, communication, problem solving, self-advocacy, and executive functioning (Alverson et al., 2019). These are critical skills required for successful post-secondary transition planning. This indicates a necessary role for OTs to contribute to students’ transition planning as OTs are fully equipped to support the development of skills such as self-advocacy and self-determination (Angell et al., 2019; Spencer et al., 2017). However, currently, there is a limited number of OTs working in transition planning for postsecondary education (Dirette, 2019).

The purpose of this capstone project is to develop an occupational therapy-based transition program from high school to post-secondary education. The program will focus on social, self-advocacy, and self-determination skills to help the students transition from high school to post-secondary education as smoothly as possible.


Capstone project submitted to the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Occupational Therapy.