Spring 2017

Document Type

Master's Thesis (Open Access)

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)


Teacher Education


According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, high school graduates with a diploma are more likely to secure a job and earn more income over their lifetime than non-graduates. Latinos have the largest racial/ethnic population of adults aged 25 and older with high school non-completion. This quasi-experimental quantitative research study was conducted for four weeks, with 30 Latino high school students with learning disabilities, in a low socioeconomic school district. In addition to typical instruction, the treatment group received the Self-Determined Learning Model of Instruction (SDLMI), and set goals utilizing the Goal Attainment Scaling Model (GAS). The control group received typical instruction. The Arc’s Self-Determination Scale (SDS) was implemented pre and post with both groups to determine if the SDLMI improved student level of self-determination. Independent and paired samples t-tests were conducted to determine if there were statistically significant differences between the means of both groups on the SDS. The results indicated that the SDLMI and goal-setting did not significantly increase Latino students with LD’s level of self-determination. Some improvements were noted in the results and in on-task behaviors with the treatment group. Suggested future research includes: shorter survey, questions accessible to ELL students, and increased time for goal-setting.