How Are We Preparing Students With Emotional Disturbances for the Transition to Young Adulthood? Findings From the National Longitudinal Transition Study—2

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry

Publication Date


Document Type



Students; Young Adult; Adolescent; Adolescent Health Services; Child; Child Health Services; Mental Disorders; Schools


Health Services Research | Mental and Social Health | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology


The authors describe five principles they identified from the literature on exemplary practices to help students with emotional disturbances (ED) have positive secondary school experiences and successful trajectories into early adulthood.The five are relationships, rigor, relevance, attention to the whole child, and involving students and families in goal-driven transition planning.The authors evaluated implementation of these practices for middle and secondary school students with ED by using data from a nationally representative longitudinal study of students receiving special education services. The results suggest that exposure to best practices has improved since the 1980s and is similar to that for students with other disabilities, but significant opportunity for improvement remains. The authors also identify implications for school programming.

DOI of Published Version



Wagner, M., & Davis, M. (2006). How are we preparing students with emotional disturbances for the transition to young adulthood? Findings from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 14, 86-98. doi: 10.1177/10634266060140020501

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders