Current Projects

Telehealth Neurodevelopmental Disability Parent Training – We are currently recruiting participants for this study!

The purpose of this study is to develop and evaluate a telehealth parent training program for caregivers of children recently diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder or related disabilities. In collaboration with Psychological Sciences at Purdue University and Indiana University School of Medicine.

Para-Impact: Professional Development with Teacher-as-Coach for Paraeducators of Elementary Students with Moderate-to-Severe Developmental Disabilities – In Data Collection

The purpose of this project is to develop Para-Impact, a professional development package to train supervising teachers to utilize practice-based coaching to train their paraeducators to implement systematic instruction for elementary students with moderate-to-severe developmental disabilities (MSDD). The development of Para-Impact will address this research-to-practice gap, providing a mechanism for teachers to supervise, train, and evaluate paraeducators’ delivery of effective instructional practices for students with MSDD. Funded by the Institute of Educational Science.

Participatory Action Research: Research Collaboration with a Public Elementary School to Improve Special Education Programming – Manuscript in preparation

The purpose of this study is to better understand stakeholder perceptions and practices of special education at a Midwestern public elementary school while they consider changes to building configurations and operations. This PAR project was initiated by the school principal and a joint decision-making approach as been implemented across all aspects of the project including the development of the purpose, research questions, information gathering, measures, and recruitment. Information gathered through this study will be by the school administration to make decisions regarding future improvements in special education programming.

“Delivered Right to Your Own Home” Stakeholders’ Perspectives on an At-Home Autism Likelihood Assessment – Manuscript in preparation

This qualitative study is examining the perceptions of autistic parents and parents of children with autism, genetic disorders, and/or families who live in environmental risk areas. The study aims to assess the willingness, concerns and supports needed for families to complete an at-home autism likelihood assessment kit. This is a Purdue Autism Research Center (PARC) project in collaboration with the Department of Human Development and Family Studies.

Telehealth Parent Coaching in Naturalistic Communication Intervention for Angelman Syndrome – Manuscript in preparation

The purpose of this study is to develop and evaluate a telehealth parent training program on prelinguistic and enhanced milieu teaching specifically for families of children with Angelman syndrome. Funded by the Angelman Syndrome Foundation. In collaboration with the Department of Psychological Sciences at Purdue University.

Supporting Teachers in Evidence-Based Practices using Practice-Based Coaching (STEP2) – Manuscript in preparation

STEP2 is a professional development program that incorporates behavioral skills training and practice-based coaching to support special education teachers in addressing challenging behavior. Current studies evaluate STEP2 on teacher use of functional behavior assessments, teacher implementation of function-based interventions, and teacher coaching of paraprofessionals. Funded by the Clifford B. Kinley Trust and the Purdue Research Foundation.

Advances in Functional Analysis of Challenging Behavior – on hold due to COVID-19

This project aims to improve the feasibility and effectiveness of functional behavior assessments for challenging behavior in educational settings. Studies evaluate effects of modifications to functional analysis procedures on accuracy of assessment results and feasibility within school and home-based settings.

Teaching Preschoolers with Autism – on hold due to COVID-19

Teaching Preschoolers with Autism seeks to design and pilot a professional development program for preschool teachers of children with Autism. Using single-case research designs, this project will evaluate the effects of the Teaching Preschoolers with Autism professional development package on teacher use of recommended practices and distal child communication, social, and behavioral outcomes.  Funded by the Purdue Research Foundation.

Exploration of Attentional Strengths and Weaknesses of College Students with Autism in STEM Majors: Impact on Access and Participation in Active Learning – on hold due to COVID-19

The purpose of this project is to acquire a clear understanding of factors that support or impede students with Autism in STEM programs to success. This exploratory investigation aims to identify interactions between characteristics and behaviors of individuals with Autism and environmental factors and how these interactions support or hinder access to college instruction. This will be accomplished through translational research involving neuropsychological assessment, experimental and psychophysiological measures of attentional strengths and weaknesses, and direct observation in natural settings. Funded by Launch the Future incentive grant from College of Education.