Self-Determination Requires Social Capital, Not Just Skills and Knowledge

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David Leake


social capital, individualism, collectivism


Curricula and programs designed to support students with disabilities to gain greater self-determination are typically rooted in individualistic values stressing independence and self-reliance. However, it can be cogently argued that the collectivistic value of interdependence is actually essential for self-determination in all cultures because interdependent social relationships yield the social capital that most people need to achieve their self-determined goals. Interdependent relationships should therefore be given greater weight and attention in self-determination theory and practice.
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