The primary mission of the baccalaureate program in Rehabilitation Services is to prepare students to work with people with disabilities in a variety of settings in a wide range of positions. Students will learn the knowledge and skills necessary to assist individuals with disabilities to obtain and maintain meaningful employment, to live as independently as possible, to participate to the fullest extent possible in their communities, and to assume control of their lives.
To achieve this mission, students in Rehabilitation Services will develop a broad understanding of the field of rehabilitation. After completing the courses, students will have a familiarity with the various disabilities people may experience and the psychosocial aspects of these disabilities; an understanding of the helping professions and the interpersonal skills required of helping professionals; knowledge of various community resources and the services provided by those resources; an awareness of values, philosophy, and basic practices in the field of rehabilitation; the skills to use the elementary principles of applied behavior analysis; an understanding of the different roles and responsibilities of those trained at the undergraduate versus the graduate level; oral, written, and nonverbal communication skills for working with people with disabilities, their families, and other service providers so that they may work as integral members of multidisciplinary teams providing services to consumers; a familiarity with professional organizations and journals in the field so that they will be prepared to stay informed of current issues; and a solid base of knowledge enabling them to pursue graduate work if they desire.
At the completion of the Rehabilitation Services program, students will have developed the knowledge and skills to:
1. Describe the various physical, emotional, and cognitive disabilities experienced by people who receive rehabilitation services and understand their functional limitations.
2. Understand the medical and psychosocial impact of disabilities.
3. Understand the impact of society's attitudes towards disabilities on the treatment of people with disabilities.
4. Understand how physical, mental, gender, racial, cultural, and environmental variables interact to affect the lives of people with disabilities.
5. Develop interaction skills to accommodate cultural sensitivity when working with consumers and their families.
6. Be familiar with the wide variety of generic and specialized community resources available to serve people with disabilities.
7. Describe the major services provided in rehabilitation (e.g., rehabilitation counseling, vocational evaluation, adjustment services, job placement, physical restoration, environmental adaptations).
8. Identify the roles of different professionals in the field of rehabilitation including those trained at the undergraduate level and those trained at the graduate level.
9. Understand the role of the rehabilitation case manager in coordinating services for people with disabilities.
10. Understand the local, state, and federal laws that affect rehabilitation services and the rights of people with disabilities.
11. Understand the importance of advocacy (including self-advocacy) in the field of rehabilitation.
12. Develop skills to empower consumers to be active participants in their own rehabilitation plan.
13. Apply the principles of behavior analysis and therapy to human needs and problems including:
(a) defining and measuring target behaviors,
(b) developing appropriate behavioral interventions, and
(c) evaluating behavior change.
14. Understand the ethical principles that guide the rehabilitation field.
15. Develop the verbal, written, and nonverbal communication skills necessary to work with people with disabilities, their families, and other service providers.
16. Develop basic rehabilitation service delivery skills including
(a) writing intakes, progress notes, and other technical writing,
(b) interviewing and active listening,
(c) working as a team member,
(d) ensuring confidentiality, and
(e) understanding duty to warn.
17. Describe the rehabilitation process and techniques used to evaluate eligibility for services, assess consumers to identify employment and independent living options, develop appropriate treatment plans, and provide follow-up.
18. Understand the similarities and differences among public, private not-for-profit, and private-for-profit rehabilitation practice.
19. Understand the community-based employment options for individuals with disabilities.
20. Be familiar with the changing demographics (e.g., gender, cultural diversity, age) in the workforce.
21. Develop knowledge and skills to apply basic behavior analytic skills to problems of social significance in residential programs, employment settings, schools, and community programs.
22. Be familiar with the theories of cause and development of drug and alcohol abuse, the consequences of abuse, classes and types of drugs, and legislation and current issues related to substance abuse and addiction.
23. Be familiar with the social, political, economic, and legal issues pertinent to an aging society and rehabilitation.
24. Develop the knowledge and skills pertinent to the procedures and programs provided to persons with developmental disabilities.
25. Develop the knowledge and skills pertinent to the procedures and programs provided to persons with psychiatric disabilities.
26. Develop the knowledge and skills to train, supervise, and evaluate employees who are providing direct care to consumers.
27. Be familiar with the professional organizations, professional journals, and job opportunities in the field of rehabilitation.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I receive credit for my previous work experience?
Yes. You may be eligible to receive 3 hours of course credit in REHB 494 for previous work experience in the field of rehabilitation if you meet specific criteria. These credit hours are elective hours and may not be substituted for required REHB courses.
What is the Capstone option?
The Capstone Option is designed for students who have earned or will earn the Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree. Often those student find that they have to spend more than two additional years (60 semester hours) to earn a bachelor's degree. The Capstone Option has been developed to eliminate that obstacle. For more information about this, ask your academic advisor.
Are any scholarships available?
The Rehabilitation Services major was the recent recipient of a large grant from the U. S. Department of Education/Rehabilitation Services Administration, and is funding up to 9 tuition credits a semester for selected students in the major. Please contact Dr. Jim Bordieri: firstname.lastname@example.org 618-453-8237 for further information.
John C. Mitchell Endowed Scholarship Award recognizes and supports outstanding Rehabilitation Services undergraduate students who are motivated and concerned about making improvements in services for persons with disabilities. This award is usually announced at the end of the fall semester or the beginning of the spring semester. Information about the award will be posted on the undergraduate bulletin board and announced in class.
a. Must be admitted into the RS major.
b. Must have completed 20 hours in RS (required and elective REHB courses count).
c. Must be currently enrolled.
d. Must have a minimum GPA of 2.5 in the major.
To apply, you must submit a letter stating that you are applying for the scholarship. Your application packet must also include: a separate personal statement explaining why you selected the rehabilitation profession and three letters of recommendation. Two of the letters must be from faculty members.
Students who receive this award are recognized at the College of Education and Human Services Honors Day and the Guy A. Renzaglia Lecture.
Is any other type of financial aid available?
SIUC offers a wide variety of employment positions on campus for students who need to maintain an income while attending school. In addition, various types of financial aid may be available for eligible students. For more information contact: Financial Aid, SIU Carbondale IL 62901-4702, 618-453-4334. email@example.com , www.siu.edu/~fao
Does the program have an active student group?
Yes. Students Together Advocating Rehabilitation Services (STARS) is one of 450 registered student organizations on campus. The organization is for undergraduate students in the Rehabilitation Services program. STARS provides a variety of educational, service, and social activities during the academic year.
Will I be prepared to go to graduate school after I get my BS degree?
Yes, many graduates of the RS program enter master's programs in rehabilitation or a related field such as social work, therapeutic recreation, or education psychology to name a few. If you are considering graduate work in rehabilitation, the Rehabilitation Institute offers several programs that might be of interest to you. They are:
Are there services on campus for students with disabilities?
The SIUC campus and surrounding community are accessible to people with disabilities. The campus provides adapted housing, full academic and programmatic access, computers, and individualized services for people and their equipment. For more information contact Disability Support Services 618-453-5738 or TDD 618-453-2293 or www.siu.edu/~dss
How do I contact my academic advisor?
The academic advisor for the Rehabilitation Services program is Angela Cummings-Hunter. Her office is in Wham 122. She can be reached at 618-453-6317 firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can call, write or email Dr. Stacia Robertson, the coordinator of Rehabilitation Services program:
Dr. Stacia L. Robertson
Associate Professor and Coordinator
Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Carbondale, IL 62901-4609