Impact Feature Issue on Postsecondary Education and Students with Intellectual, Developmental and Other Disabilities

Creating a Transition Portfolio (sidebar)


Margo Izzo Associate Director and Program Director of Special Education and Transition at the Nisonger Center, The Ohio State University, Columbus

The transition portfolio is a collection of documents students prepare to help develop their postsecondary goals and their plans to achieve those goals. Students print out and place these documents in a binder and save them electronically for easy updating in the future. Many of the documents can be developed in English or technology classes to meet required academic standards and course objectives. The following items are suggested for inclusion in the portfolio:

  • PowerPointTM presentation outlining results of students' transition assessment surveys, careers of high interest, postsecondary goals, and transition activities they will implement to prepare for college and careers.
  • Job comparison chart outlining the nature of work, working conditions, salary and education needed to enter their top two careers.
  • College comparison chart outlining the costs, size, residential options, majors and supports available at two or three colleges of high interest.
  • Career narrative explaining their postsecondary plans.
  • Measurable postsecondary goals for employment and education or training that students and their IEP team can consider including in the IEP.
  • Short-term, annual goals students can complete this year to help them meet their long-term postsecondary goals.
  • Resume and cover letter for students to attach to a job or college application.
  • Completed job and college applications to use as samples for future applications.
  • Written interview with a professional from their chosen career area.
  • Checklist of tasks that must be completed to reach their postsecondary goals.
  • Bookmarks listing Web sites that have been helpful in clarifying the students' career goals and transition plans.