Date of Award


Document Type

Access Controlled Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Lynn Anderson, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Susan Wilson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Laurie Penney McGee


Individuals with disabilities continue to have limited opportunities and experiences in community recreation. Review of the research literature and best practices, and a needs assessment demonstrated the need for intervention in the area of individuals‟ with disabilities participation in recreation. The purpose of this project was to increase access to recreation in New York State for individuals with disabilities and to develop, pilot, and evaluate the Recreation Referral Service (RRS). The conceptual framework for development of the RRS was an integration of the theory of ecological perspective, principles of normalization and social role valorization, and the construct of selfdetermination. Along with the literature review and needs assessment, an RRS protocol was developed and the Inclusive Recreation Resource Center Recreation Referral Service Manual for Staff and Students was a product of the protocol. Implementation of the program occurred through graduate and undergraduate students working with individuals with disabilities participating from local disability organizations. Evaluation of services took place through documentation and participant, student, and agency feedback. The New York State Developmental Disabilities Planning Council provided funding for the project.