Steven R. Sligar, EdD, CVE, PVE

Sligar pic1

Coordinator, Vocational Evaluation Certificate

Steven R. Sligar. EdD, CVE, PVE serves as professor and coordinator of the Graduate Certificate in Vocational Evaluation. He has a Masters in Rehabilitation and Special Education with a specialization in Vocational Evaluation from Auburn University and a Doctorate in Adult Education and Human Resource Development from Northern Illinois University.

Dr. Sligar has over 15 years in higher education and 30 years experience as a vocational evaluator and program administrator. Fluent in American Sign Language, Dr. Sligar has conducted over 1000 vocational evaluations of persons who are deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf-blind. He has been the administrator of three community-based rehabilitation programs that served persons who were deaf and/or blind.

He has over 50 publications, presented over 300 international, national, state, and local workshops in the areas of vocational evaluation, deafness, administration, and ethics. He served as co-editor of the Journal of Rehabilitation (JOR) and as past president of the American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association (ADARA). At present he is co-editor of the Vocational Evaluation and Career Assessment Journal and on the editorial review boards of the JOR, ADARA Journal, and New Horizons in Adult Education Journal. Currently, he is the President of the NC chapter of the Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Association and serves on the Board of the NC Rehabilitation Association.

Teaching/Research Philosophy

My teaching is progressive and humanistic because I want to help the learner discover ways to solve problems on the job, in the community or at home. I believe teaching is accomplished through active interaction with the learner regardless of the medium of instruction.

My research is about the construction of knowledge to understand social phenomenon, connected with other disciplines and disseminated actively and purposefully.

Research Interests

Dr. Sligar has three primary research areas, which are rehabilitation, access for persons with disabilities and administration of rehabilitation programs, most within the context of deafness rehabilitation. One recent research activity was participation as a Panel participant with the Rehabilitation Services Administration and the University of Arkansas National Institute on Rehabilitation Issues on A New Paradigm for Vocational Evaluation: Empowering the VR Consumer through Vocational Information. He was involved with three separate research projects that examined campus climate for students with disabilities. These were mixed methods studies that surveyed faculty, disability support services staff and students with disabilities about accommodations provided or received. He conducted a qualitative analysis of comments from the subjects and the results were recently published in the Journal of Higher Education and Disability.

Since 2014, he has served as an expert panelist and advisory council member for the project to Improve Vocational Rehabilitation Services by Developing VR Assessment Tools in American Sign Language for a National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research funded Disability and Rehabilitation Research Project research initiative through The Substance Abuse Resources and Disability Issues Program in the Boonshoft School of Medicine at Wright State University (WSU).

Courses Taught

            ADRE 2000 Survey of Community Resources in Rehabilitation and Health Care
ADRE 4100 Occupational Analysis and Job Placement
ADRE 4400 4400 Introduction to Vocational Evaluation
ADRE 6050 Ethical and Legal Aspects in Clinical, Addictions, and Rehabilitation Counseling
ADRE 6100 Occupational Analysis and Career Counseling
ADRE 6401 Assessment in Clinical, Addictions, and Rehabilitation Counseling
ADRE 6400 Introduction to Vocational Evaluation & Career Assessment
ADRE 7601 Rehabilitation Administration and Leadership
ADRE 8050 Ethical and Legal Issues in Counselor Education and Supervision
ADRE 8630 Theory & Design of Rehabilitation Programs

Employment Experience

Teaching and Training

East Carolina University (ECU), Greenville, NC
Professor Coordinator Graduate Certificate in Vocational Evaluation (2004-present)
Duties: Teach graduate courses in vocational evaluation and doctoral level courses in rehabilitation administration. Direct graduate program in vocational evaluation which includes student advisement, management of the vocational evaluation lab, selection and ordering of all psychometric tests for student use and training.

Rock Valley College (RVC), Rockford, IL
Adjunct Instructor (2003-2005)
Duties: Taught credit entry level class in business relations and organizational behavior.

Northern Illinois University Department of Communicative Disorders, DeKalb, IL
Adjunct Instructor (2004 & 2002)
Duties: Taught graduate class in vocational assessment and undergraduate class in job coaching.

CBT Training Systems (TS), Frankfort, IL
Training Associate (1995-present)
Duties: Provide training, consultation and evaluation to public and private sector organizations in the areas of job development and placement, and in the administration of human resources.

Northern Illinois University Adult Continuing Education, DeKalb, IL
Instructor (1995)
Duties: Taught continuing education class in beginning American Sign Language.

Georgia Perimeter College (formerly DeKalb College), Clarkston, GA
Part-time Instructor (1990-1994)
Duties: Administered interpreter training program entrance examination; coordinated total sign language immersion practicum; and taught continuing education, credit beginning and intermediate sign language, and orientation to deafness classes.

Alamo Community College (formerly San Antonio College), San Antonio, TX
Part-time Instructor (1979-1988)
Duties: Taught basic job related sign language classes.


Center for Sight & Hearing (CSH), Rockford, IL
Vice President of Community Services (1996-2004)
Duties: Coordinated and developed employment related services including evaluation, employee development, and community employment services. Developed assistive technology program with annual sales of over $100,000. Provided individual program consultation and communication assessments for vocational rehabilitation programs. Coordinated CSH program accreditation process for CARF. Managed contracts for provision of services, technical assistance, and professional development activities in a twelve-state region.

Northern Illinois University Research and Training Center on Traditionally Underserved Persons Who Are Deaf (NIU-RTC), DeKalb, IL
Visiting Research Associate (1995)
Duties: Assisted with research projects to determine prevalence rates of target population and develop computerized case simulation for training service providers. Assisted with other resource development and training activities. Identified and created research materials, collected and analyzed data, and translated research results into usable products. Disseminated information or products through training, technical assistance, and publication.

State of Georgia, Division of Rehabilitation Services (GA DRS), Georgia Sensory Rehabilitation Center (GSRC), College Park, GA
Director (1988-1994)
Duties: Directed a statewide vocational and independent living rehabilitation program for persons who are deaf and/or blind. Managed a facility that provided six primary services (evaluation, personal and social adjustment, occupational skills training, job development/placement, rehabilitation technology, and 24 hour residential services with 33 beds), support services (transportation, library/media center, and transitional housing), and administrative services (personnel and fiscal management, planning and program evaluation, human resource development, and contractual services). Ensured advisory council input in planning and monitoring programs not available elsewhere in Georgia. Provided direct administrative management of a facility consisting of 35,000 square feet, 12 apartments, 50 staff members, a $2 million annual budget, and served over 175 persons per year.

Methodist Mission Home (formerly the Southwest Center for the Hearing Impaired or SCHI), San Antonio, TX
Director, SCHI (1980-1988)
Duties: Directed comprehensive residential facility providing rehabilitation services (vocational evaluation, counseling, work adjustment and independent living skills training) for 70 severely and multiply handicapped deaf adults. Supervised staff of 27 with annual operating budget of approximately one million dollars.

Vocational Evaluator for SCHI (1977-1979) Duties: Provided first-line supervision to four staff and conducted comprehensive vocational and independent living assessments.

Cave Spring Rehabilitation Center (CSRC), Cave Spring, GA
Evaluator II (1974-1977)
Evaluator I (1973-1974)
State Merit Intern (1972-1973)
Duties: Provided vocational and independent living assessments of students from the Georgia School for the Deaf and adults as referred from around the state.

Selected Publications

McClanahan, M. L. & Sligar, S.R. (2015). Adapting to WIOA 2014 minimum education requirements for vocational rehabilitation counselors. Journal of Rehabilitation, 81(3), 3-8.

Fish, M. T., Cox, C. M., Leierer, S. J., Sligar, S. R., & Toriello, P. (2015). Vocational vital signs: A different approach. Vocational Evaluation and Career Assessment Professionals Journal, 10(1), 8-19.

Betters, C. J. & Sligar, S.R. (2015). The tools of the trade: A national study on tool utilization in vocational evaluation. [Special issue]. Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Association Journal and Vocational Evaluation and Career Assessment Journal, 8–16.

Sligar, S. R., Cawthon, S., Morerer, D., Moxley, A. (2013, Fall) Equity in assessment for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association. Journal, 47(1), 110-127.

Sligar, S. R. & Zeng, X. (2011). Web accessibility and readability evaluation of community rehabilitation programs. Vocational Evaluation and Career Assessment Professionals. Journal, 7 (2), 10-26.

Anema, J. C. & Sligar, S. R. (2010). Innovation in the workplace: Evaluation of a pilot employee assistance program serving persons with disabilities. Journal of Rehabilitation, 76(4), 9-17.

Boykin, R. B. & Sligar, S. R. (2010). Empowerment in vocational evaluation: Moving from implied to explicit. Vocational Evaluation and Career Assessment Professionals. Journal, 6(1), 11-23.

Crozier, M. K. & Sligar, S. R. (2010). Behavioral addictions screening during the vocational evaluation process. Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Bulletin, 37(1), 45-54.

Sligar, S. R., Atherton, W. L., Toriello, P. J., & Schwiebert, S. (2010). The Influence of Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome on instruments used in vocational evaluation. Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Bulletin, 37(1), 37-44.

Sligar, S. R. & Zeng, X. (2008). Evaluation of website accessibility of state vocational rehabilitation agencies. Journal of Rehabilitation, 74(1), 12-18.

Vogel, S. A., Holt, J. K., Sligar, S. R., & Leake, E. (2008). Assessment of campus climate to enhance student success. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 21(1), 15-31.

Sligar, S. R., Burke, R. K., & Kavin, D. (2008). What were we thinking? ADARA's construction of knowledge: 1976 to 2006. American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association. Journal, 41(3), 187- 206.

Sligar, S. R. & Toriello, P. J. (2007). Improving services to clients with addiction issues: New paradigms for vocational evaluation practice. Vocational Evaluation and Career Assessment Professionals. Journal, 4(1), 17-29.

Sligar, S. R. (2006). Deaf and hearing: Conducting cross-cultural research in a postsecondary setting. American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association. Journal, 40(1), 5-16.

Vogel, S., Burgstahler, S., Sligar, S. R., & Zecker, S. (2006). Faculty knowledge and practices regarding students with disabilities in three contrasting institutions of higher education. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 18, 109-123.

Professional Associations

  • American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association (ADARA)
  • National Rehabilitation Association (NRA)
  • North Carolina Rehabilitation Association (NCRA)
  • North Carolina Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Association (NCVEWAA)
  • Vocational Evaluation and Career Assessment Professionals (VECAP)
  • Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Association (VEWAA)


Hobbies—music, especially the blues, reading historical fiction and biographies when time permits—sometimes on an airplane while traveling to someplace fun, also staying healthy with exercise and running.