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RSA: Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA)

The Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA) is also known as the Vocational Rehabilitation or VR Needs Assessment Guide. The Guide and its Appendices provide state VR agencies and State Rehabilitation Councils (SRC) with fundamental tools necessary to meet the requirements of a fully developed comprehensive statewide needs assessment (CSNA).

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) amendments to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 added two new requirements for the CSNA. The CSNA must also identify, report and address the VR service needs of youth with disabilities and students with disabilities with respect to:

  • their need for pre-employment transition services or other transition services; and
  • an assessment of the needs for transition services and pre-employment transition services and the extent to which such services are coordinated with transition services provided under the IDEA.

While this Guide has not been updated to include the new requirements, the recommended process for conducting a CSNA is still appropriate.

The Guide is arranged into two parts:

  • Part I—The Model CSNA
    • Overview of the Model CSNA
    • Six Steps to Assessing and Addressing VR Needs
    • Seven Information Strategies
  • Part II—Implementing the Model CSNA
    • Step 1: Defining and Establishing CSNA Goals
    • Step 2: Developing CSNA Plan for Information and Dissemination
    • Step 3: Gathering the information
    • Step 4: Analyzing the Results and Developing Findings
    • Step 5: Develop the Conclusions: Potential Action Strategies
    • Step 6: informing State Plan, Goals, Priorities, and Strategies

The Appendix is arranged into ten parts:

  • Disability Population Statistics
  • Disability Population Estimates
  • Projections of State Population and Labor and Economic Forecasts
  • VR Agency Data
  • State-Level Data from National Programs
  • State and Sub-State Reports and Other Materials
  • Input from Stakeholders
  • Minorities and Unserved or Underserved Groups
  • Literature Review
  • Reviews of State Needs Assessments

A presentation on the materials is available as an additional resource.

RSA is committed to providing technical assistance resources to enable VR agencies to meet their required responsibilities. We hope that state VR agencies and SRCs find these materials helpful in developing a plan for, conducting and reporting the results of a comprehensive statewide needs assessment.

Please contact your state liaison if you require additional assistance.

VR Needs Assessment Guide (PDF, 776KB)

VR Needs Assessment Guide Appendices (PDF, 1.9MB)

VR Needs Assessment Training (PDF, 128KB)


Last Modified: 12/15/2017