Most simply, self-determination is the belief that people with disabilities will establish where they want to live, with whom they want to live, and how their time will be occupied. It is the belief that people with disabilities will determine how their resources shall be used.
The following websites may offer some valuable information on self-determination and achieving independence:
The Institute for Self-Determination
Independent Living Research Utilization at The Institute of Rehabilitation and Research
Research Information for Independent Living
American Disability Association
Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund