The implementation of response to intervention requires interventions for struggling students be provided through general education prior to referral for special education. We surveyed elementary teachers (K-3) in one state to examine the characteristics of the supplemental reading interventions that their students receive through general education. Findings reveal differences between grade levels in the amount of time interventions are provided to students, the providers of the intervention, and the material selection for the interventions. No differences between grade levels were noted in the frequency of intervention or instructional group sizes. Three-quarters of the teachers reported providing the supplemental interventions to students in their class. The findings provide insight into the resources utilized by schools to implement supplemental interventions.
Discusses the case of a 19-yr-old, severely handicapped female who was taught to reduce ambulation time for a target behavior (the period from when S entered the public school building to when S sat down at her classroom desk) through token economy and self-management procedures. S was taught to self-monitor and self-record her behavior through a combination of modeling, priming, and verbal directions. Data indicate that a 63% reduction in mean ambulation time was achieved over baseline means 27–42 days after training. Findings suggest that self-management skills can be taught to the severely handicapped in a public school setting. (7 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Comments on the warning of A. M. Hofmeister (see record
1994-11598-001) to special educators to beware of using the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' standards for judging the potential effectiveness of mathematics programs for students with disabilities. Educators are urged to examine recent research that validates specific instructional programs and instructional approaches like cognitive strategy instruction for students with disabilities. The mathematics reform movement is urged to enlarge its definition of constructing knowledge to include instructional practices with demonstrated effectiveness for students with disabilities. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Describes an empirically based model depicting how 3 classes of variables are thought to influence reading. The classes include text-related, teacher-related, and student-related variables. The model is based on an interactive theory of the process of reading, in which efficient readers use both conceptually derived and phonemically derived mental processing when engaged in contextual reading. For each of the 3 variable classes, an empirical base is built, demonstrating the importance of each to the interactive reading act. Discussion of the differential ease with which each of the classes of variables may be controlled is included, with implications drawn for teaching poor readers. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Reviews the revolving door identification and programming model (RDIM) developed by J. S. Renzulli et al (1981) for the education of gifted and talented individuals and discusses how the RDIM might be applied in remedial and special education settings as a basis for positive programming. Basic to this proposition is the assumption that individualized education programs can be developed on the basis of strengths rather than weaknesses—through presenting interests rather than through presenting problems. The rationale for the RDIM, based on the operational concept of differentiated giftedness, is addressed. This concept assumes that gifted behaviors are both temporal and specific to certain areas of study, and it has direct implications for the way in which services are provided. In this model, students go in and out of special services according to specific need at varying times and for different performance areas. Three specific components of RDIM's implementation are discussed, including identifying the student's skills and interests, streamlining the basic academic program to make time for pursuing interests without sacrificing the basics, and providing enrichment experiences in areas of the student's interests or potential interests. (18 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
The conflict between special education teachers and classroom teachers has a significant negative impact on the education of mildly handicapped students. The role of consultant has emerged partially as a response to the tensions generated from this conflict. However, standard models of consultation suffer from 2 weaknesses: In too many cases, they imply a superior–inferior relationship between the special education and classroom teacher, and they are narrowly focused on problem solving. Cooperative professional development is proposed as an adjunct to or substitute for consultation. Cooperative professional development involves small teams of special education and classroom teachers and uses a variety of approaches to enhance their mutual professional growth. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Evaluates the percentage of nonoverlapping data approach proposed by T. E. Scruggs et al (see record
1987-29788-001) for quantifying outcomes of single-S research. The present author suggests that this approach is (1) too sensitive to atypical baseline data, (2) not powerful enough to discriminate important treatment differences, and (3) adversely affected by subtle trends in the data. Suggestions for correcting some of the problems are provided, but the overall recommendation is for additional empirical studies before admitting any such metric into accepted practice. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Analyzed 2 approaches to science education to determine whether different school curricula could interact differentially with characteristics (e.g., language/literacy, cognitive/conceptual, psychosocial, physical-sensory) of students with disabilities. Two districts implemented activity-driven approaches to science education, and 2 districts used traditional textbook approaches. Textbook curricula conveyed science information through reading and emphasized vocabulary learning and factual recall of text-based information. Treatment of science topics was broad, but topic focus was shallow. Activities-oriented curricula deemphasized reading in favor of hands-on experiences with the phenomena being studied. Vocabulary was minimal, and general understanding of broader, more general concepts was emphasized. Students with disabilities may have more difficulty with textbook than activity-oriented approaches, but both curricula require teachers to provide support programs to meet cognitive and behavioral needs. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Replies to the issue of the teacher as an experimenter in program implementation, raised by G. Giordano (see record
1994-11596-001) in his comment on the work of A. Hofmeister (see record
1994-11598-001). It is suggested that large-scale, unsupervised experimentation at the classroom level is inconsistent with the role and training of most practitioners in most professions. Innovativeness is relative to the knowledge of the practitioner; when an instructional approach has been shown to be generally ineffective or discriminatory in its impact, a conservative implementation of similar approaches is required. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Reviews recent research involving the use of keyword and mnemonic techniques with exceptional students (relatively low and relatively high achievers and Ss with learning disabilities). Mnemonic techniques include a systematic retrieval component, along with a recording component, a relating component, or both. All results to date indicate that Ss instructed in these techniques consistently and significantly outperform Ss who are given alternative modes of study—including direct instruction—on a variety of school learning tasks. It is suggested that the overt rehearsal component of direct instruction can lead the teacher to a false sense of the degree of Ss' content mastery. The preponderance of intralist intrusion errors following direct instruction suggests that strong associations between specific vocabulary items and specific definitions were not made. The relative scarcity of such errors following mnemonic instruction suggests that mnemonic connections are more stable and retrievable. (52 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Commends C. V. Morsink and L. L. Lenk (see record
1993-15510-001) on their well-researched and constructed description of the delivery of special education programs and services. A broader perspective is presented to their discussion of the least restrictive environment and contemporary practices and of linking the ethics and practices of collaborative processes in special education to the issues and strategies for facilitating school reform. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Discusses the Strategies Intervention Model, (SIM) a collection of interventions which increase the likelihood that students with disabilities can succeed in general education classrooms. Three major categories of the SIM are discussed: (1) learning strategy interventions, which are sequential cognitive strategies for task completion; (2) content enhancement routines, which facilitate effective information delivery and understanding; and (3) empowerment interventions, which motivate students to perform at an optimum level. Two schools' efforts to translate the SIM into practice are described. In each instance, the process of building an environment conducive to inclusion took considerable time and a broad base of faculty and administrative support and commitment. Each example clearly illustrates the need for supported inclusion, and not merely inclusion, for a program to produce meaningful student outcomes. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Comments that A. M. Hofmeister (see record
1994-11598-001) presents a persuasive argument for replacing politically driven agendas with validated replicable instructional programs as vehicles for eduational reform in mathematics. Minimizing dogma, endorsing teacher–learner verification procedures, and considering diversity represent minimal actions that are needed in math reforms. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Describes 4 measures of paragraph reading in terms of administration, age/grade for intended use, examiner characteristics, format characteristics, and scoring. The measures are part of the Basic Achievement Skills Individual Screener (BASIS), the Durrell Analysis of Reading Difficulty (DARD), the Test of Reading Comprehension (TORC), and the Woodcock Reading Mastery Tests (WRMT). Using objective evaluation criteria (standardization, reliability, and validity), subtests of the DARD and TORC were found to be unacceptable overall. Subtests of BASIS and WRMT received acceptable ratings. (5 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Significant numbers of culturally diverse children and youth now experience school failure in schools across the United States. To counter this unfortunate and inequitable circumstance, many teacher educators and policymakers now advocate for multicultural curricula in teacher education and special education programs. Although the research on multicultural education has been examined thoroughly, there has been no systematic analysis of the multicultural teacher education empirical literature in special education. Hence, the purpose of this manuscript is to present findings from a comprehensive analysis of this literature. We first summarize the existing research in teacher education. Next, we examine extensively the existing literature on multiculturalism in special education teacher preparation programs. We end our review with identification of strengths and weaknesses of existing research and provide recommendations for future inquiries.
The Individualized Education Program (IEP) is an essential component in providing a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) to individuals with disabilities. The 2004 amendments of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) have attempted to reduce the paperwork requirements of the IEP, while simultaneously ensuring that the goal of FAPE is met. Furthermore, the legislation attempts to bring the requirements of IDEA and NCLB into better alignment. Legislative changes to the IEP are described, and possible implications are discussed.
The widespread failure of schools to match reading instruction to children's needs is the underlying theme of this article. Three of the factors that account for such a shortcoming are identified: large class size, dependence on basal reader programs, and questionable testing practices. How dependence on basal materials leads to a “standard” curriculum for all, beginning as early as kindergarten, receives special attention. The difficulty of getting teachers to provide differentiated instruction when they use basal materials is also discussed, with references to a year-long effort to alter one teacher's goals and behavior.
This article is about action-oriented teacher research, wherein teachers advocate for student's abilities and accomplishments. teacher researchers use the stories students reveal about the competent aspects of their lives as learners to immediately change their teaching. the article describes (a) underlying assumptions about teaching and knowing, (b) the focus of the teacher research perspective, (c) methodological considerations, and (d) applications to the study of special education. adopting a teacher research stance in special education has the potential to provide an alternative view of students in special education programs and to transform both teaching and assessment practices.
This paper presents three studies of learning in science using language-based measures. In study 1, students with disabilities read at approximately half the rate of students without disabilities on third-grade level story and science passages. Reading fluency in science lagged far behind story reading. Study 2 consisted of presenting students with disabilities with four increasingly difficult passages on matter followed by comprehension questions. There was no relationship between reading fluency and comprehension. Students did not differ in ability to answer factual and inferential questions. In study 3, a significant difference was found between students with and without disabilities in listening and reading formats of a vocabulary measure. For the former, listening scores were significantly higher than reading. Together, the studies indicate that students with disabilities will not learn effectively in science if instruction is primarily language based.
Transitions are critical times for both teachers and students. Efficient between-task and within-task transitions can greatly improve academic learning time. The purpose of this article was to review one intervention, high-probability (high-p) task sequences, as a method to promote more effective transitions. High-p sequences involve presenting a student with a series of brief requests with a history of compliance immediately prior to a request to complete a task that generally results in noncompliance. The results of this review indicate that high-p sequences are an effective method to make academic transitions more efficient. Ideas for application and future research are discussed.
A review of the literature was conducted for articles published between 2003 and 2010 to build a case for the degree to which evidence-based practices were documented for teaching academic skills to students with severe developmental disabilities. This review extended earlier comprehensive work in literacy, mathematics, and science for the population in question. A total of 18 studies met the Horner et al. (2005) quality indicator criteria. In general, time delay and task analytic instruction were found to be evidence-based practices. In addition, specific target responses were defined to show academic learning, with the most prevalent target responses being discrete responses; the type of systematic prompting and feedback used most often was time delay, while the component used least often was stimulus fading/shaping; and teaching formats used most often were massed trials and one-to-one instruction.
The IDEA requires participation and progress in the general curriculum by all students. However, there is limited knowledge about the degree to which students with mental retardation have such access. This study examined the degree to which middle school students with mental retardation have access to the general curriculum and the impact of the classroom setting and the student's level of ability on such access. Findings indicated that students with mental retardation were most likely to participate with the general curriculum in the general education classroom and were less likely to engage in activities linked to a standard if they had more severe disabilities. Many students were engaged in activities in the general curriculum, but there was room for improvement in providing curricular modifications to promote access.
When accurately assigned and administered appropriately, testing accommodations help ameliorate the effects of personal characteristics that limit access to critical information and prevent a person from demonstrating his or her true abilities in the tested domain. Inaccurate assignment or misuse of accommodations may counteract the benefits of accommodations and introduce sources of measurement error. In this study, we investigated the consistency of accommodation assignments across 38 third-grade students' Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), teacher recommendations, and student performance data. We found inconsistencies between the accommodations listed on the IEP and the teachers' recommendations. Similar results were observed when comparing either IEP or teacher recommendations with students' performance. These inconsistencies are interpreted in light of federal mandates and best practices.
Educational policy mandates student participation in statewide accountability assessments with the expectation that students achieve proficiency on content objectives. Demonstrating proficiency may be most difficult for students with an Emotional Disturbance (ED) who experience poor school outcomes. This study examined the participation and performance of students with ED on a regular statewide accountability assessment in math and examined the relationship between student and school level factors to student participation and performance. In the study, 34% of the students with ED participated and met proficiency standards on the regular statewide assessment in math. Student level factors examined were grade level, gender, ethnicity, and intelligence. School level factors were school-wide socioeconomic status and instructional setting for math; ethnicity, intelligence, and instructional setting associated with participation; grade level, ethnicity, and intelligence associated with performance. Level of intelligence was the only factor predictive of both participation and performance on the regular statewide accountability assessment in math.
Increasing the accurate use of research-based practices in classrooms is a critical issue. Professional development is one of the most practical ways to provide practicing teachers with training related to research-based practices. This study examined the effects of in-service plus follow-up coaching on first grade teachers’ accurate delivery of three research-based strategies during math instruction. Teachers were trained to use a combination of whole-class instruction strategies, including model-lead-test for introducing new concepts and correcting errors, choral responding, and response cards. Results indicated that all teachers improved their delivery of the strategies after the in-service, with a second level of growth achieved after coaching. Improvements also generalized to untrained math sessions. Teachers reported very high levels of satisfaction with the training model.
This study sought to measure the accuracy of special education teachers' judgments of student performance when those judgments are based on unsystematic observation. Subjects were 20 special education teacher trainees and 20 special education cooperating teachers who, following the implementation of instructional lessons, estimated levels of children's performance. Chi-square analyses and t tests on teachers' estimates suggested that, despite confidence in their own judgments, teachers tended to be inaccurate and to overrate their students' performance. Implications for evaluating student progress and program effects are discussed.
This study examined the relationship between special education teachers' sense of personal and teaching efficacy and (a) their use of a formative evaluation method (curriculum-based measurement) and (b) the amount of growth they effected among their students. nineteen special education teachers monitored two students with mild disabilities over 16 weeks in math computation using curriculum-based measurement. results indicated that teachers with high personal efficacy and high teaching efficacy increased end-of-year goals more often for their students; teachers with high teaching efficacy set end-of-year goals that were more ambitious for their students. teachers with high personal efficacy effected significantly greater growth. suggestions for additional research and implications for practice are discussed.
The purpose of this study was to compare the effect of a repeated reading and question generation intervention entitled Re-read-Adapt and Answer-Comprehend (RAAC) with a modified RAAC intervention without the repeated reading component. The sample included 30 students in Grades 3 through 5. The students received services in reading within a three-tiered response to intervention framework or in special education. Students were randomly assigned to the nonrepetitive condition or the control repeated reading condition and participated in 50 intervention sessions over a 4-month period. Regardless of condition, all students made gains in oral reading fluency on independent passages. The modified RAAC program without passage repetition appeared to be as effective if not more so at increasing reading fluency when compared to the RAAC program with passage repetition.
The collaborative campus-school district special education teacher preparation model at Arizona State University-West integrated the self-determination literature with the student-led Individualized Education Program (IEP) process and competency-based teacher education. Pre-post definitions of self-determination, evaluation of program impact in terms of self-reported ratings of confidence and competence related to Council for Exceptional Children core competencies for beginning special educators, and representative case studies of preservice teachers' data-based instruction programs linking self-determination, IEP goals, and state standards for students with disabilities are reported in this article.
Adults with learning disabilities, ages 19 to 32, were queried to examine their employment experiences at job entry and in job advancement vis-à-vis the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). They were questioned regarding job acquisition; experiences on the job; job advancement; self-disclosure; and employer experiences, attitudes, and beliefs. The interviews indicate that provisions of Title I of the ADA currently are being under-utilized by individuals with learning disabilities in the workplace. Self-disclosure about disability was rare, and, surprisingly, reasonable accommodations were used infrequently. These findings raise a number of important questions for consideration by the field of learning disabilities.
Methodological and practical challenges present formidable barriers to conducting empirical evaluations of school reform initiatives. Systematic information about school reform and improvement, and its relationship to special education, is even more difficult to obtain. In this study, the authors developed a reliable and valid method to (a) systematically describe and assess the school improvement process and (b) examine its relationship to special education by including in the investigation programs for students with emotional disturbance. A rigorous case-study design was used with 20 schools that varied in their levels of improvement activity. Results indicated that the School Improvement Index (SII) could reliably and validly discriminate between schools engaging in high levels of school improvement activities and those schools engaging in low levels. The use of the SII as a research tool and an aid to local schools engaged in school improvement is discussed.
This article is the second of a twopart series designed to review the critical features of facilitating generalization and adaptation of learning strategies. In Part 1, a model of generalization was presented along with research supportive of the model and identification of research needs. Essentially, the model views instruction for generalization not as something that comes at the end of an instructional sequence, but rather as consisting of four levels of generalization that transverse instruction—antecedent, concurrent, subsequent, and independent. The purpose of this article is to consolidate a number of studies that describe a unified set of specific instructional techniques that can be used while addressing generalization and to present them as part of an overall instructional approach for learning strategies. Within each level, specific procedures mediated by the special (or remedial) education teacher, regular content teacher, peer, and/or student are illustrated. Each category is followed by a synthesis of related teaching practices. The procedures identified here should not be considered definitive because demonstration of efficacy awaits additional validation; however, they do serve as a basis for planning instruction consistent with what has been learned about generalization to date.
Via a dmonstration-plus-modl technique, the equal additions method of subtraction was used to teach subtraction requiring regmuping. A multiple baseline design acmss elementary aged studnts labeled learning disabled was med to evaluate the equal adfitions method. Within subjects, a multiple probe design across problem types was utilized to determine generalization to new problem types and maintenance of trained problem types. Results suggest that instruction in the equal adfitions method of subtraction was effective in pducing an increase in student's computation of subtraction with regmuping. In adfition, all studnts showed some generalization to untrained pblem gpes.
Students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often have difficulty with reading comprehension. This multiple baseline across participants design with multiple probes study examined the effectiveness of a multicomponent reading comprehension strategy (TWA: Think Before Reading, Think While Reading, Think After Reading) taught following the self-regulated strategy development model on social studies expository text recall of three high school students with ADHD. Results showed improvement in the number of main ideas and percentage of supporting details recalled. Gains were maintained and some improvement occurred at 2- and 4-week follow-ups. Implications for future research and practice are discussed.
This article reviews "ADHD with Comorbid Disorders: Clinical Assessment and Management" by Steven R. Pliszka, Caryn L. Carlson, and James M. Swanson, a book that provides information on children displaying both attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and other comorbid psychiatric conditions, complex psychopharmacological interventions that may serve these children, and appropriate psychosocial treatment for a wide variety of disruptive and emotional behaviors. (CR)
The authors examined predictors of offense severity, judicial disposition (e.g., diversion, prosecution, incarceration), and repeat offending. Data were obtained on approximately 100,000 individuals from the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice. Whites and females were more likely to be prosecuted than Blacks and males, particularly for less serious offenses. At first and second referrals, Blacks were more likely to be incarcerated than Whites. Youth referred before age 14 were more likely to recidivate and youth prosecuted for earlier offenses were more likely to recidivate than those not prosecuted. Father absence and special education status were also predictive of recidivism. Prosecution for first referral was predictive of earlier reoffending at all severity levels of first offense. (Contains 1 figure and 4 tables.)
Although the participation of administrators in problem-solving consultation teams is frequently mentioned in the literature as an important factor in the effectiveness of those teams, there has been little research into the impact of administrators on such teams. The impact of administrator participation on problem-solving consultation teams (including prereferral, teacher assistance, mainstream assistance, intervention assistance, and instructional support teams) is discussed, and a model of administrator impact is proposed. A literature review suggests that in determining the efficacy of collaborative problem-solving teams via enhanced student outcomes, the relationship between specific variables that contribute to an interactive model of principal—teacher influence, shared instructional leadership, and specific administrative support mechanisms should be examined. In particular, investigations into the the impact of an interactive teacher—principal influence model on principal characteristics and administrative supports and into the way those supports in turn affect school culture to influence successful collaborative problem-solving teams are of primary interest.
Special education administrators in Utah were surveyed to identify the types of prereferral intervention approaches employed by school districts. These officials' perceptions regarding the effectiveness of the approaches for maintaining students in general education and of the prereferral intervention process were also elicited. The findings indicate that a variety of prereferral intervention approaches are used by school districts. Special education administrators were generally uncertain whether the approaches maintained students in general education. Similarly, they were uncertain as to whether the prereferral intervention process (a) benefits teachers, (b) is a bureaucratic hurdle, and (c) should be maintained. These officials, however, believed that teachers follow through with the prereferral intervention process and that it maintains students in general education and results in fewer referrals for formal assessment.
This study investigated the social validation of adolescent social skills by teachers and students. A total of 183 general and special education secondary teachers responded to a social skills survey that assessed teacher perceptions of the importance of social skills under three adjustment domains: relating to others, relating to adults, relating to yourself. Four hundred thirty-seven nonhandicapped and handicapped students, enrolled in the participating teachers' classes, responded to a student version of the same survey. Results indicated high levels of stability and internal consistency for the teacher survey. Only internal consistency was assessed for the student survey, and it exceeded .90 for each section of the survey. Much higher agreement levels were obtained on the survey social skills among teacher groups and among student groups than between teacher and student respondent groups. The one area of moderate agreement obtained between teachers and students dealt with the social skills necessary to adjust satisfactorily to instructional settings. The most highly rated teacher social skills related to behavioral compliance, task engagement and completion, responsiveness to the teacher, and the display of socially mature behavior. The lowest rated skills by teachers dealt with peer-related social behavior. In contrast, the highest rated skills by students focused on relationship dynamics and the quality of social exchanges with others. Results are discussed in terms of their implications for constructing adolescent social skills curricula and the importance of addressing both teacher- and student-preferred social skills within instructional programs.
Accurate diagnosis and treatment planning for children with autism are a growing concern. This study sought to address two questions: (a) Which domains of the of the Behavior Assessment System for Children (2nd ed.) Teacher Rating Scales (BASC-TRS) are most effective in discriminating students diagnosed with higher functioning autism from children and youth who do not have a disability or psychiatric diagnosis? and (b) Are there noteworthy differences in BASC-TRS domain scores between children and adolescents with autism? The results indicated that children and adolescents with an educational diagnosis of autism were given significantly higher ratings in the domains of Developmental Social Disorders and Withdrawal and significantly lower ratings in Functional Communication. These scales appear to discriminate best between those students with autism and their nondisabled peers. In addition, the results suggest that the differences between students with autism and students without clinical problems may become less pronounced as they grow into adolescence.
In this study, curriculum-based measurement (CBM) procedures were implemented with adults attending a basic literacy program. The specific purposes of the study were to obtain reliability and validity information regarding CBM with adults, to determine the sensitivity of CBM to student growth in reading, and to assess the value and utility of such a system. Alternate form reliability data indicated greater consistency across narrative rather than expository passages and high reliability regardless of level of difficulty. Interrater reliability was also high. Validity data indicated some inconsistency between scores obtained on CBM and those on various standardized tests. Students showed significant gains on both CBM and the California Comprehension subtest. CBM procedures were more highly related to teacher judgment of progress than were standardized measures. Both teachers and students were positive about CBM procedures, including the tasks, graphing of scores, and perceived influence on student performance.
This article reviews "Facing Learning Disabilities in the Adult Years" by Joan Shapiro and Rebecca Rich, a book that discusses the definitions, causes, and characteristics of learning disabilities as well as many interventions for successful adult adjustment. The information is aimed at helping families and professionals, as well as the adults themselves, to understand better the realities of having a learning disability. (CR)
One means of selecting and judging the appropriateness of a special education research program for the “beginning” career researcher is to analyze the quality of published articles. An analysis of published literature in professional journals provides a means of comparison in terms of topic, theory, methodology, and application. This article reviews some of the findings related to published research on special education topics. Seven general guidelines related to developing special education research programs are suggested.
Home-school partnerships in special education often include parent advocacy that at times requires specific and specialized knowledge, skills, and attitudes. Parent participation is shaped by access to cultural and social capital resources and is critical to assessment and service delivery. This study explores the types of capital resources parents perceived necessary to their participation via five focus groups of participants from a range of socioeconomic, disability, and racial or ethnic backgrounds through 27 in-depth interviews. NVIVO7 was used to analyze data; categorical meaning and relational themes were coded recursively. Results indicated that intercultural and intracultural differences existed among parents. Advocacy on behalf of one student also required different capital resources than did advocacy for systems change. Discussion focuses on implications of parent advocacy on educational equity. (Contains 1 table.)
Research as a means to advocacy is discussed in this commentary on the research articles published in volume 16, issue 3 of "Remedial and Special Education." The role of quantitative and qualitative methods is considered, along with the researcher's ideological perspectives on research, and the importance of generating knowledge that promotes correction or improvements in research and education. (SW)
This article discusses the construction of the "emotional disturbance" (ED) category in the cases of four African American elementary students. These cases represent a sub-set of data from a three-year ethnographic study of the special education process in a large, culturally/linguistically diverse school district. Based on interviews, observations, and examination of students' records, the data revealed three inappropriate, yet significant, contributors to the children's classification as ED: inadequate instruction/behavior management prior to referral, exclusion of contextual classroom information from the decision-making process, and subjective/arbitrary evaluation processes. Presented is a cross-case thematic analysis of these complex and problematic processes and their outcomes. The authors call for a reconsideration of "ED" to reflect a behavioral continuum rather than the current categorical formulation, a more holistic view acknowledging the contribution of school contexts in the evaluation of children's difficulties, and research focusing on effective, preventive practices for all children with troubling behavior. (Contains 2 tables.)
Leisure preferences of fourth, fifth, and sixth grade learning disabled (LD) boys were investigated. Results indicate that there are more similarities than differences in leisure choices, although a few minor differences surfaced. LD boys in these grades generally prefer the same types of after-school and weekend activities, and the same sports, hobbies, and Television shows as their non-LD peers. If accurate, these results have important implications for selection of instructional materials and promotion of social integration.
Demands for the development of special education policies by state and local educational agencies are increasing as federally mandated state education agency (SEA) administrative activities and state and federal special education litigation expand. Federal regulatory provisions provide a superstructure within which numerous policy vacuums or gaps exist. If left unfilled, these policy vacuums often become the target of administrative and judicial litigation. Federal courts and enforcement agencies often are eager to defer to state and local special education policy-making when it occurs in advance of litigation and when, in response to operational problems and questions, it contains reasonable educational and administrative answers expressed clearly and in measurable terms. By developing special education policy in this proactive manner, state and local education agencies can retain control over education decision making.
This article analyzes the 1999 decision of the United States Supreme Court, Sutton v. United Air Lines, by asking four questions and showing how the majority of the Court answered them. It then sets out the significance for people with disabilities, including especially students covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and the antidiscrimination provisions (Section 504) of the Rehabilitation Act. It also sets out the implications of the decision for special and general educators as they engage in Individualized Education Program planning with students and their parents.