Publication Date


Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Education Specialist


According to IDEA (1997), students who receive special education must have an Individualized Education Plan (IEP). Student goals are a required portion of the IEP and can be developed, monitored, and evaluated with or without the student. The literature indicates personal involvement in goal setting increases commitment to achieve the goal, mastery of learning concepts, and intrinsic motivation (Muir, 2000). The purpose of this study was to investigate (a) students' knowledge of their IEP goals, (b) the level of participation students "liked" as depicted in 3 videotaped IEP development scenarios, and (c) the extent of students' participation in IEP goal setting. A sample of 30 males in grades 6, 7, and 8 who received special education services were participants in the study. The students rated videos depicting three levels of involvement in student-teacher educational goal setting. The students were also interviewed to determine (a) knowledge level of existing IEP goals and objectives, (b) reasons for video preferences, (c) and the way the students would like to work with their teachers. Results indicated a significant rank order for the amount of involvement with high involvement first, limited involvement second, and low involvement third. Further results revealed students had general goal knowledge, but did not have the ability to recall specific objectives written in their IEP. Students also related that they would like to work with their teacher in a similar manner to the high involvement video scenario. Results were discussed in terms of methodological limitations and the need for additional research.


Education | Psychology