I'm Determined

I'm Determined Logo

The I’m Determined Project provides engaging opportunities for students, educators, and families to practice self-determination skills.

The project helps students – especially those with disabilities – undertake control of their lives by helping them set and steer the course rather than remaining silent passengers. It is also used to capture the skills needed to shape the student’s own life and ability to understand themselves and express their needs, which are critical skills needed in life and the workplace.

Prince William County Public Schools’ Career and Transition Services team works closely with the regional Training and Technical Assistance Center at George Mason University and the Virginia Department of Education (which funds the program) to provide I’m Determined resources to schools. A group of PWCS transition specialists supports schools in implementing the I’m Determined and self-determination curriculum.

Components of I’m Determined and Self-Determination

  • Choice making
  • Decision-making
  • Problem-solving
  • Goal setting and attainment
  • Self-regulation
  • Self-instruction
  • Self-advocacy
  • Internal locus of control
  • Self-efficacy
  • Efficacy expectation
  • Self-awareness and self-knowledge

Impact of Self-Determination Skills

Students with self-determination skills:

  • Perform better academically and socially
  • Are more independent after high school graduation
  • Are likely to live independently, outside the family home
  • Have higher rates of enrollment in postsecondary education pathways
  • Have higher rates of employment and earn higher wages
  • Have increased self-confidence and self-advocacy
  • Develop stronger communication skills
  • Are more likely to set and achieve postsecondary goals

For more information, please visit the I'm Determined website.