ELS include a wide range of knowledge and skill interactions believed to be essential for adult independent living.
They must be able to dress and groom properly, use appropriate table manners, make decisions about money, and use transportation to get to work. The three major skill areas that need to be addressed are daily living, personal/social, and occupational skills (at later stage).

The following skills are some that have been identified as essential for independent adult living:

  • Managing Personal Finances
  • Selecting And Managing A Household
  • Caring For Personal Needs
  • Safety Awareness
  • Preparing, And Consuming Food
  • Buying And Caring For Clothing
  • Exhibiting Responsible Citizenship
  • Using Recreational Facilities And Engaging In Leisure Activities
  • Getting Around The Community

Personal and social skills are critical in keeping a job and maintaining friendships. Skill instruction in this area should include the following:

  • Achieving self-awareness
  • Acquiring self-confidence
  • Achieving socially responsible behavior
  • Maintaining good interpersonal skills
  • Achieving independence
  • Achieving problem-solving skills
  • Communicating with others