Skip Navigation
Funding Opportunities | Search Funded Research Grants and Contracts

IES Grant

Title: The Impact of Internal Coaching on Providers' Use of Family Guided Routines Based Intervention (FGRBI) in Part C Early Intervention
Center: NCSER Year: 2018
Principal Investigator: Romano, Mollie Awardee: Florida State University
Program: Low-Cost, Short-Duration Evaluation of Special Education Interventions      [Program Details]
Award Period: 2 years (8/1/2018–7/31/2020) Award Amount: $213,464
Type: Efficacy Award Number: R324L180013

Co-Principal Investigators: Schnurr, Melissa

Partner Institutions: Florida State University’s Communication and Early Childhood Research and Practice Center and the Iowa Department of Education

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to evaluate a professional development program centered on internal coaching (i.e., peer coaching) on the use of Family Guided Routines Based Intervention (FGRBI) by early intervention providers. FGRBI is used in providing services for Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) throughout the state of Iowa. Early intervention providers train and support the child’s caregiver (e.g., parent) in implementing evidence-based practices with their child during every day routines and activities in their natural environments. As the state attempts to increase the fidelity of intervention delivery in a cost-effective manner, an increasing number of local education agencies (LEAs) are training staff to coach their peers. This project will evaluate the professional development program that uses internal coaches for FGRBI, with the aim of improving family and child outcomes of young children with communication or motor delays. The evaluation will be conducted by a partnership among Florida State University’s Communication and Early Childhood Research and Practice (CEC-RAP) Center, the Iowa Department of Education (IDOE) – Early ACCESS (Part C) system, and LEAs who directly administer Part C services to Iowa’s children and families.

Project Activities: The research partners will conduct a series of single-case design studies with nine families of infants and toddlers with communication or motor-related disabilities to assess whether there is a functional relationship between the internal coaching intervention and changes in provider practices, families’ use of strategies, and child outcomes (i.e., functional abilities and communication). The majority of the research will be conducted in Year 1, with continued analyses and dissemination activities in Year 2.

Products: The results of the study will be disseminated through local and state-wide oral briefings, conference presentations, and peer-reviewed journal articles.

Structured Abstract

Setting: The evaluation will occur in the homes of families of infants and toddlers with disabilities in rural communities in Iowa.

Population/Sample: Three internal coaches, nine Part C providers, and nine families of an infant or toddler (ages 6-28 months) with a communication or motor delay will participate in the research.

Intervention: The professional development intervention for Part C providers includes online training materials on topics related to family guided practices and caregiver training, web-based video feedback, and monthly in-person sessions with the internal coach. Specifically, the intervention will use the Family Guided Routines Based Intervention (FGRBI), a manualized intervention approach, delivered through distance learning professional development. The distance learning uses technology supports to remotely coach providers to implement FGRBI through content-based workshops, monthly expert and peer coaching with performance-based feedback and reflection, monthly webinars on related content, and a community of practice to continue to support providers over time. The initial training is provided via web-based modules to introduce family guided practices and caregiver coaching to the early intervention providers. The provider video records each session with the family. Next, the internal coach reviews and provides feedback and reflective questions via an online video annotation platform (i.e., software in which participants can view a video and add notes at a particular moment in the video). The coach and provider meet to discuss the sessions; problem solve; reflect upon the provider’s implementation needs, priorities of the family, and needs of the child; and jointly set goals for the provider’s work with the caregiver.

Research Design and Methods: The research partners will conduct single-case design studies with each of the nine provider-family dyads. The children and their families will be randomly selected from a pool of eligible children. The baseline phase will take place with providers and families before coaching is introduced to determine the providers’ use of the FGRBI key indicators (i.e., specific intervention practices). The primary dependent variable will be the provider’s use of the FGRBI and secondary dependent variables include child outcomes and parent-child interactions.

Control Condition: Provider-family dyads will serve as their own controls during the baseline phase of the single-case design studies prior to any coaching.

Key Measures: The proximal outcome measure will include a checklist and scoring rubric to assess the percentage of FGRBI key indicators used by the provider. The FGRBI key indicators were developed to be in alignment with the Council for Exceptional Children’s Division for Early Childhood’s Recommended Practices. Additionally, Individual Family Service Plans developed by providers will be reviewed for the number and type of family outcomes and use of family priorities when developing child outcome goals. In addition, the Embedded Instruction Observation System-Early Intervention (EIOS-EI) will be used to measure caregiver-child interactions during each session. The Child Outcome Summary (COS) process and an Individual Growth and Development Indicator (Early Communication Indicator) will be used to measure child outcomes (i.e., functional abilities and expressive communication).

Data Analytic Strategy: The researchers will use visual analysis to determine if there is a functional relationship between the internal coaching and provider practices, family strategy use, child-caregiver interactions, and child outcomes. This analysis will include changes in level, trend, variability, immediacy (latency), and overlap between phases and between providers. Between-case standardized mean differences will be analyzed to estimate an effect size.