Lab News

Bold names denote current members of ABIL

Summer, 2021

ABIL member and doctoral student Amanda Austin has been awarded a student research grant from the Association for Positive Behavior Support! Funds will be used to support an upcoming single-case research design project focusing on using a performance diagnostic assessment to improve special educators’ implementation of functional communication training.


Dr. Jennifer Smith and Jasmine Begeske were awarded an Arts Project Support Grant from the Indiana Arts Commission to support their project entitled Small But Mighty Mural Project. With this funding, they are able to collaboratively design and install a reusable mural for the outdoor learning lab at Linnwood Early Childhood Center in Lafayette, Indiana. Linwood serves over 150 preschool-aged students with disabilities. This mural will encourage process-based engagement with art materials (paint, markers, various painting tools) for students with limited access to arts learning. The large surface will allow children to engage in developmentally appropriate mark-making that emphasizes movement and exploration of materials.

Funding for this project will provide professional development for teachers at Linnwood to inspire them to further incorporate the arts into their curriculum by using the mural. Professional development sessions will also include opportunities for teachers, paraprofessionals, and related service providers to expand access to artmaking by creating accessible art tools for individual students with physical, visual, severe, and multiple disabilities.


Is social media just a digitized form of verbal behavior? Do dating apps purposefully use variable ratio schedules of reinforcement to keep you swiping? Doctoral student Amanda Austin was invited as a guest on The Reinforcer Podcast (Episode 6) examining the use of social media and dating apps through a behavior-analytic lens. Jump to minute 50 to hear the take on verbal behavior.


Dr. Catharine Lory will begin her Postdoctoral Research position in the Department of Educational Psychology at Baylor University in June 2021. Her areas of research focus will include developmental disabilities, applied behavior analysis, and caregiver coaching. Congratulations to Dr. Lory!


Spring, 2021

ABIL member and Clinical Instructor in Special Education, Jasmine Begeske, received the Sidney Marsh Moon Outstanding Service Award for embodying service above and beyond what is expected of her position. This is one of the most prestigious awards provided by the Purdue College of Education, and is only given out once every two years. Congratulations to Jasmine!


Congratulations to Dr. Catharine Lory for the successful defense of her dissertation on April 9, 2021! Dr. Lory’s dissertation study was one of the first of its kind, evaluating methods for identifying positive or negative reinforcement subtypes of automatic-maintained behaviors in children ASD and correlation with heart rate variability (HRV) across conditions. Her committee included Dr. Mandy Rispoli (advisor & chair), Dr. Rose Mason, Dr. Ben Mason and Dr. Brandon Keehn.


Dr. Mandy Rispoli was interviewed by the local news station, WLFI, for Autism Awareness month. Dr. Rispoli provided information regarding early signs of autism and steps parents can take if they have concerns.


Dr. Rose Mason was featured in the March, 2021 Institute for Education Sciences (IES) “Inside IES Research” blog post regarding her IES-funded Para-Impact project!


Doctoral students Jasmine Begeske, Eric Shannon, Amanda Austin, Jingyuan Zhang, and Mehmet Sulu won 1st place for Best In-Progress Research Poster at the Annual Graduate Student Educational Research Symposium (AGSERS) hosted by the Purdue College of Education Graduate School! The poster described the on-going Participatory Action Research project with a Midwestern elementary school to improve special education programming. The project began in Fall 2020, as part of a doctoral seminar class lead by Dr. Rose Mason.


Congratulations to Dr. Rose Mason and Dr. Mandy Rispoli for winning 2020 Department of Educational Studies Faculty Awards!

Dr. Mason received two of the awards for Associate Professors in Discovery and Engagement.

Dr. Rispoli received an award for Full Professors in Engagement.


Congratulations to Ph.D. Candidate, Catharine Lory for winning the Senior Student Presenter grant from the Society for the Advancement in Behavior Analysis (SABA)!


The Autism and Behavior Intervention Lab is excited to congratulate two of our doctoral students for passing the behavior analyst certification exam this February! Charissa Voorhis and Mehmet Sulu are now Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs)!


The Purdue College of Education has been awarded 2 Instruction Equipment Grants totaling nearly $200K!

Empowering Pre-service Teaching with Emerging Technologies and In-depth Faculty Feedback – $99,393

Rose Mason, Christy Wessel-Powell, Wanju Huang, David Sears, Adrie Koehler, and Bill Watson

The College of Education’s Innovative Initiative (I2) will increase field placements for all preservice teachers. I2 will leverage technologies to deliver cutting-edge pedagogical training via a combination of practice in simulated and real-world classroom environments. Thus, this proposal seeks to purchase a suite of virtual reality and remote coaching technologies.

Creative Assistive and Rehabilitative Technology Solutions (CARTS)  – $99,907

Jasmine Begeske & Jennifer Smith

CARTS is a novel and innovative instructional approach to increase pre-service teacher knowledge and implementation of rehabilitative and assistive technology (AT) for students with disabilities. The CARTS will be used across teacher education at Purdue to demonstrate how to individualize, create, and adapt AT.


Congratulations to Dr. Mandy Rispoli for becoming the new Co-editor in Chief for the Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions!

Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions (JPBI) offers sound, research-based principles of positive behavior support for use in school, home, and community settings with people with challenges in behavioral adaptation. Regular features include empirical research; discussion, literature reviews, and conceptual papers; programs, practices, and innovations; forum; and media reviews.”

2020

CO-LEAD Special Education Doctoral Fellowship

Collaboration across Universities to develop Leaders in Evidence-based Practices, Autism Spectrum Disorder, and Diversity

Purdue College of Education is proud to announce the award of a $1.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs to provide full funding to special education doctoral students interested in autism intervention. Project CO-LEAD is a consortium between Purdue University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the University of Oregon.

Accepted students receive:
-Full tuition
-Competitive stipend
-Funding for research supplies
-Health Insurance
-Support for attending professional conferences
-Research & publication opportunities
-Mentorship and training with national and international experts in autism intervention research
-Internships in high needs schools

PI: Wendy Machalicek, Ph.D., BCBA-D (University of Oregon); CO-PIs: Mandy Rispoli, Ph.D., BCBA-D (Purdue University); Hedda Meadan-Kaplansky, Ph.D., BCBA-D (University of Illinois); Key Personnel: Rose Mason, Ph.D., BCBA-D (Purdue University); Stephanie Shire, Ph.D., (University of Oregon)