Recent Research on Special Education

How to help children with autism reach out more in communicating

Children with autism seldom take the lead in conversations or social interactions. Even when they learn to respond appropriately to others’ attempts to communicate with them, they leave it to others to initiate social exchanges. A new study in the Journal of Research in Special Education Needs says educators need to change the way they interact… Tell Me More »

Karaoke improves reading comprehension of teens with learning disabilities

High school students with disabilities who participated in a karaoke-style subtitling intervention scored significantly higher in reading comprehension tests than a control group, reports the Institute of Education Sciences in a recent What Works Clearinghouse report. Teachers in the Hawaiian study used same-language-subtitling (SLS) to encourage reading and increase student reading proficiency over a 12-week… Tell Me More »

Schools prevail more than parents in court cases involving services to autistic children

Schools prevail more often than parents in recent court cases involving students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), says a recent study in Preventing School Failure. “The move from parents prevailing in the 1990s, to virtually even split decisions (2002-2004), and last, to a climate more favorable to school districts in cases litigated in 2007-2009, indicates… Tell Me More »

Peer support increases classroom social interactions for students with disabilities

Many schools are committed to inclusive classrooms for students with severe disabilities. But, numerous observational studies of inclusive classrooms draw the same conclusion: Social interactions among students with severe disabilities and their non-disabled classmates remain fairly infrequent. A recent study in Exceptional Children describes the use of peer support arrangements to increase social interactions in… Tell Me More »

How schools should address a diagnosis of Auditory Processing Deficiency (APD)

An increasing number of students are being diagnosed with auditory processing disorder (APD), a controversial condition that is difficult to distinguish from other learning disorders, says a recent article in Psychology of Schools. School psychologists and other educators who work with children suspected of having APD should be aware of serious concerns about assessment tools… Tell Me More »

Researchers provide framework for evaluating co-teaching

Teacher evaluations of individual teachers pose many well-known challenges to administrators.  Less familiar are the challenges of evaluating co-teaching, the working partnership of a general education teacher and special education teacher in an inclusive classroom. A recent study in Intervention in School and Clinic provides administrators with a much-needed framework for evaluating co-teaching.  The article… Tell Me More »

Managing students with ADHD or ADHD behaviors in cooperative learning groups

Middle and secondary school teachers don’t need a researcher to tell them about the benefits of cooperative learning. They’ve seen for themselves that cooperative learning often results in academic gains and increased motivation. But the presence of disruptive students in their classrooms, who don’t interact well with their peers, often deters teachers from using cooperative… Tell Me More »

Use 3 broad categories to set educational outcomes in IEPs

Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) for students with disabilities put educators in the troubling gap between two powerful laws, the 2004 Individuals With Disabilities Educational Improvement Act (IDEA 2004) and the 2001 Elementary and Secondary Education Act (Title I, No Child Left Behind Act). One law expects schools to consider the individual needs of the student… Tell Me More »

Never too late: Study finds social skills training matters for teen EBD students

Social skills training is routinely used with students with emotional and/or behavioral disorders (EBD) in secondary school when social competence takes on increased complexity and importance. But is social skills training (SST) effective for students at this age and do some theoretical approaches seem to be more effective than others? asks a recent article in… Tell Me More »

High school teachers stress self-determination

Self-determination has long been an important educational goal for many students with disabilities. With the mainstreaming of students with disabilities, researchers recently did a  survey of 340 high school teachers to find out how much importance they place on self-determination, reports a recent study in Exceptional Children. Both general educators and special educators were surveyed. “Our findings suggest that… Tell Me More »