Research and Outreach

KU campus, research and service

Each year the faculty, staff and students of the Department of Special Education continue to contribute to the field's knowledge base through research, scholarship, resource development, service, and policy enhancement.

Our research articles on KU ScholarWorks »

Affiliated Centers & Institutes

The Department of Special Education faculty and staff operate a number of research and professional development centers and websites that benefit individuals with disabilities and their families and the professionals who serve them. Students interested in grant funding support should peruse the following sites and contact the centers/units involved in their area of interest. Department faculty who are associated with each program are listed as well.

Advanced Learning Technologies
ALTEC, the Advanced Learning Technologies in Education, creates resources, supports collaboration and resource sharing, and fosters alliances that help educators discover and use the possibilities of the Internet for both their students and for themselves.

Division of Adult Studies
Division of Adult Studies is committed to enhancing quality of life for people with disabilities or who experience societal and ecological barriers. To achieve this mission DAS performs policy analysis, research, product development, staff development, information dissemination, and program evaluation.

e-Learning Design Lab
The mission of the e-Learning Design Lab (e-DL) is to explore new uses of educational technology to enhance learning environments that meet the educational and professional development needs of society.

Infant Growth and Development Indicators for Infants and Toddlers
Infant Growth and Development Indicators for Infants and Toddlers site is dedicated to assessing the results of early intervention and early childhood special education services provided young children birth through age 3. IGDIs enable early childhood practitioners to monitor and estimate children's growth and progress, impacting intervention design, implementation, and modification at reasonable levels of training, time, and cost.

Interactive Collaborative Autism Network
The ICAN site is for anyone who lives with, teaches, or otherwise supports children and youth with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), including parents, teachers, and individuals with ASD.

Juniper Gardens Children's Project
JGCP began in the mid-1960s when residents of Northeast Kansas City, Kansas, joined with KU faculty to address concerns about child development in a low-income community. Together, the KCK community and JGCP have designed programs to improve the parenting, care, and instruction received by children in Kansas and throughout the country.

Kansas University Center for Developmental Disabilities
The Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities (KUCDD), established in 1969 and affiliated with the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies and the KU Department of Special Education, is funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Administration on Developmental Disabilities to pursue its mission to conduct research, training, technical assistance, and community service activities that enhance the quality of life, self-determination, and inclusion of Kansans with developmental disabilities and their families.

National Center for Learning Disabilities
The National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD) team envisions a society in which every individual possesses the academic, social and emotional skills needed to succeed in school, at work and in life. NCLD connects parents and others with essential resources, provides educators with evidence-based tools and engages advocates in public policy initiatives.

National Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports
The Center has been established by the Office of Special Education Programs, US Department of Education to give schools capacity-building information and technical assistance for identifying, adapting, and sustaining effective school-wide disciplinary practices.

Preparing Preservice Educators for Adolescent Literacy and Literacy-Centered School Reform
This site offers a compilation of resources for preservice educators, including video segments and instructional support materials that capture some of the key ideas and components that are central to improving adolescent literacy in secondary schools.

Project Providing Outreach Instruction for Special Educators
Project POISE is a personnel preparation project funded by the US Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs. POISE personnel work in partnership with school district staff to prepare special education teachers to work in urban and/or multicultural settings.

Strategic Learning Center
SLC promotes academic and self-sufficiency for low-achieving youth. This research-based program includes tutoring, mentoring, and professional development for teachers and supports thousands of youth in Kansas and across the country.

Stratepedia (formerly Content Enhancement) provides teaching methods designed for use in general education classrooms to promote learning for all students.

The Schiefelbusch Life Span Institute
The Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies (LSI) is one of the largest and most highly regarded human development and disabilities research centers in the country. The LSI brings together scientists of diverse disciplines to study human development from its genetic origins through the final stages of life. The LSI supports basic and applied research, treatment and assessment clinics, service coordination and delivery, consultation, and training-notably, training of the next generation of scientists. The Life Span Institute's 12 centers have more than 130 programs and projects active at any one time in Kansas as well as other states. Many projects directly serve individuals, families, and communities and are located in underserved Kansas City neighborhoods and rural Kansas counties.

Transition Coalition
The Transition Coalition provides online information, support, and professional development on topics focusing on the transition from school to adult life for youth with disabilities.

Kansas Teacher Service Scholarship

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Special Education Events
We want you to know about these resources for graduate students! Resources for your students on the graduate school TRAC (Teaching, Research, Academics, and Career development). Graduate Studies partners with various campus units to provide professional development opportunities to graduate students in four thematic areas: Teaching, Research, Academics, and Career development. . Center for Teaching Excellence The Center for Teaching Excellence hosts the new GTA conference, tutorial, and follow-up sessions both fall and spring semesters. Additionally, CTE provides an online guide for new teaching assistants and materials and guidance for experienced teaching assistants to improve and document their teaching. Most sessions at CTE are open to graduate students. The center has also regularly provided a course for students who wish to produce a portfolio based upon their teaching. During the fall 2014 term, CTE will also host the following programs for GTAs: • Friday GTA Lunch Discussions • Graduate Student Book Club • The Global Teaching Commons: A Seminar for New International GTAs Spencer Museum of Art The Spencer Museum of Art hosts annual “University in the Art Museum” events for graduate teaching assistants. Applied English Center The Applied English Center hosts a course for international students to help prepare them to be graduate teaching assistants at KU. Research The Research Integrity unit within the Office of Research provides training and oversight for compliance in research involving humans or animals, conflict of time and interest, restricted research, export controls, and research misconduct. KU now subscribes to the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) which provides online training in responsible scholarship. Courses are available to KU faculty, staff, and students free of charge in responsible conduct of research in six focus areas: biomedical, social & behavioral research, physical sciences, humanities, engineering, and administration. Additional resources of interest are available from the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Research Integrity. “The Lab,” an interactive movie on research integrity, is available at this link: KU Libraries The KU Libraries Center for Graduate Initiatives and Engagement offers a variety of services of interest to graduate faculty and students. These include: • A dedicated space for faculty and graduate student use in the Watson Library • Free printing for graduate students • Lockers available for graduate student check-out • Responsible scholarship training in the areas of copyright, open access, and data management • Training on research skills, data management, thesis/dissertation formatting, GIS, SPSS, Endnote, and Zotero  Hall Center for the Humanities In addition to the programming offered through the Center, the Hall Center website also provides information on Hall Center sponsored graduate fellowships, funding opportunities lists, grant development links for graduate student funding opportunities, and workshops on grant development for graduate students. Information for students is available at this link: Center for Research Methods and Data Analysis The Center for Research Methods and Data Analysis offers resources and programs for graduate students on statistics and computing, including • Weekly colloquiums • Workshops • Workgroups • Summer Methodology Institute • Online guides and resources KU Writing Center The KU Writing Center offers services to graduate students, including: • Appointments with a Graduate Writing Consultant • Online consultations • Online guides and resources • Graduate student writing groups • Graduate Student Research/Write-In events • Writing workshops More information on services for graduate students is available here: graduate-students. Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) CAPS offers a dissertation distress/thesis torment support group for graduate students working on a dissertation or thesis. More information is available on the website here: Applied English Center In addition to testing and coursework, the AEC also provides a Cross Cultural Counseling and Advising program. Counselors can work with students on matters of attendance, cultural adjustment, health, family, academics, and other matters of personal concern. For more information, contact Sandra Issa in the AEC. Grad Hacker Grad Hacker is a website written by graduate students for graduate students. The blog focuses on survival skills for graduate school and beyond. Visit: Vitae Vitae is a website maintained by the Chronicle of Higher Education, “designed just for faculty and administrators” but geared toward graduate students and recently graduated persons. The site offers a dossier service for academic job applicants, job listings, news and advice articles, and social networking functions.  Career Development University Career Center The University Career Center provides a wide range of services to support career development. Students can make appointments with Career Center staff to explore options, review job search materials, and schedule mock interviews. Career Center staff will also work with faculty to bring career information and workshops to your unit. More information and additional resources are available at the website here: Versatile PhD Graduate Studies maintains a subscription to VersatilePhD, a web-based resource for students interested in careers outside of academia. Students my access the subscription service by logging on through MyKU; VersatilePhD is listed under the services tab. MyIDP MyIDP is a web-based resource provided by Science Careers. It provides information and guidance to students on creating an individual development plan. More information is available here: Additional Resources List Professional development books for graduate students A number of books have been written with advice for graduate students. Our favorites include: Getting What You Came For: The Smart Student’s Guide to Earning a Master’s or PhD, Robert L. Peters Writing Your Dissertation in Fifteen Minutes a Day: A Guide to Starting, Revising, and Finishing Your Doctoral Thesis, Joan Bolker How to Write a Lot, Paul Silvia The Academic Job Search Handbook, Julia Miller Vick & Jennifer S. Furlong So What Are You Going to Do with That? Finding Careers Outside Academia, Susan Basalla & Maggie Debelius Outside the Ivory Tower: A Guide for Academics Considering Alternative Careers, Margaret Newhouse Graduate Studies Facebook page Graduate Studies regularly posts professional development articles on our Facebook page at: https://
A letter from a parent to teacher about her daughter from SWIFT SCHOOLS:

#1 public program in nation for special education
—U.S. News & World Report
2nd nationwide for most published journal articles in special education
Wayne Sailor directs KU’s largest grant, the $24.5 million SWIFT project, to develop a national center to assist schools
A $2.5 million grant will fund research on reasons effective technology tools are underused for students with disabilities