Skip to main content Skip to navigation
Washington State University
College of Education

TSAT | Transition Self-Assessment Tool

TSAT Overview and Purpose


Despite decades of targeted interventions, young adults with disabilities continue to experience poorer post-secondary employment outcomes than young adults without disabilities (U.S. Department of Labor, 2019). Leading up to the mid-2010’s, research provided evidence that students who receive transition services within a coordinated service delivery model experience greater post-secondary employment outcomes than those whose transition services were provided in an isolated context (Awsumb, et al, 2020; Benz, et al., 1997; Lindstrom, et al., 2013; Poppen et al., 2017; Shandra & Hogan, 2008). These trends were perhaps used as drivers in the enactment of 2014 federal legislation aimed at increasing coordination between state agencies serving young adults with disabilities.

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014 (WIOA, 2014) amended the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and requires state Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) agencies to reserve at least 15% of their federal funds to coordinate with education agencies and ensure pre-employment transition services are made available to all potentially eligible students with disabilities. Pre-employment transition services are designed to support early career development for students with disabilities and include activities that fall into the categories of job exploration counseling, work-based learning experiences, counseling on post-secondary enrollment options, workplace readiness training, and instruction in self-advocacy. WIOA also requires VR agencies to provide evidence of the extent to which the required pre-employment transition services have been made available to all potentially eligible students with disabilities.

The Transition Self-Assessment Tool (TSAT) is a web-based survey that helps VR and Education partners meet this need, and provides information about the local, regional, and statewide availability and coordination of school based transition services that align with one or more of the five pre-employment transition service categories. The tool has been designed for a “school transition services expert” to enter information about the availability of specific transition services in their school, the extent to which these services are made available to students with disabilities, and the extent to which these services are coordinated with Vocational Rehabilitation.

End users complete a survey and receive a summary report that describes the availability, accessibility and coordination of school based transition services in their area. This summary report can be paired with the TSAT’s “From Data Interpretation to Services” guide to help teams improve services to their students.

The TSAT was developed with fellowship funds from the National Institute of Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research.