What Constitutes Effective Curricula for Students With Severe Disabilities?

Stacy K. Dymond, Fred P. Orelove

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


During the last quarter century, the definition of effective curriculum for students with severe disabilities has changed dramatically. This article reviews the development of curriculum practices for students with severe disabilities and examines 3 components of the 1997 Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) that have the potential to significantly impact curriculum design. These components include (a) IDEA's emphasis on preparing students for employment and independent living, (b) mandates for student access to the general curriculum, and (c) students with disabilities in state- and district-wide assessments. The benefits and challenges of implementing these changes are explored in relation to the current literature on effective curriculum models. Future research questions for evaluating the impact of IDEA's framework on student outcomes are presented.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-122
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2001


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