Document Type


Date of Degree

Summer 2011

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Rehabilitation and Counselor Education

First Advisor

Wadsworth, John S

First Committee Member

Harper, Dennis C

Second Committee Member

Kristof-Brown, Amy

Third Committee Member

Ehly, Stewart W

Fourth Committee Member

Tarvydas, Vilia M


The current study explored how factors associated with legal claiming (gender, age, ethnic/racial status, education level, disability type, multiple disabilities, income level, employment status, claiming thoughts, claiming history, and disability orientation) impacted the psychological constructs of locus, blame, justice, and behavioral intentions among persons with disabilities. The study also investigated whether locus, blame, and justice predicted behavioral intentions such as seeking legal counsel in employment-related scenarios. Results found that age, ethnic/racial status, employment status, education level, disability type, claiming thoughts, and claiming history influenced respondents' reports that they would contact a legal agency if they were in the same situation as the actors in the hiring and termination scenarios. With regard to the predictive nature of locus, blame, and justice regarding behavioral intentions, results indicated that higher external locus scores predicted an increased likelihood for respondents to consider contacting legal aid in the employee termination scenario. Internal blame scores showed a negative relationship with contacting legal aid in the employee termination scenario. Justice negatively and significantly predicted that respondents would contact legal aid in both the hiring and the employee termination scenarios. The findings of the current study are important because they can help rehabilitation counselors and other professionals develop interventions that will aid in reducing the increased incidence of employment-related legal claiming among persons with disabilities.


Behavioral Intentions, Blame, Disability, Justice, Locus of Control


xii, 232 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 185-195).


Copyright 2011 Erin Frances Barnes