Paul V. Sherlock Center on Disabilities

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Self-Determined Learning Model of Instruction

The Self-Determined Learning Model of Instruction (SDLMI) is based on the principles of self-determination and student involvement. Wehmeyer (1999) defines self-determination as "acting as the primary causal agent in one's life and making choices and decisions regarding one's quality of life free from undue external influence or interference". A causal agent is someone who makes things happen in his/her own life.

The SDLMI was designed to enable teachers to "teach" students to take greater control over their own learning; to enable students to become causal agents in their lives; and to become self-directed learner. Below are resources and tools developed by the Beach Center on Disability, Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities, University of Kansas, as well as resources created and adapted through the Sherlock Center specifically for Rhode Island educators.

About Self-Determination
Whose Future Is It? Training Materials
Publications and Tools
Online Training Modules
The following training modules provide an overview of each of the three phases of SDLMI. Specific examples are provided in each. The modules are a work in progress. Additional examples will be added to each module over the course of the coming year. Goal Attainment Scaling Examples

Contact Information

For information on the SDLMI initiative in Rhode Island, contact Terri LaPlante, Sherlock Center, 401-456-4737 or email

Quick Links  | Resource Library | Adapted Literature/Lessons | Publications |

Family Employment Awareness Training | Inclusion Institutes | Self Directed Supports User Group | Supported Decision Making/Alternatives to Guardianship | Work Incentives Information Sessions | Cancellation Procedures

Academic/Certificate Programs
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Family to Family of RI Directory | Life after High School: A Guide for Students with VI | RI Employment Service Agencies | RI Health Resources | Self-Directed Supports for Adults with DD
For Providers RI Outcome Surveys

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