Skip Navigation
Funding Opportunities | Search Funded Research Grants and Contracts

IES Grant

Title: Multi-Tiered Systems of Support Research Network (MTSS-RN) Leadership Team
Center: NCSER Year: 2019
Principal Investigator: Coyne, Michael Awardee: University of Connecticut
Program: Research Networks Focused on Critical Problems of Policy and Practice in Special Education: Multi-Tiered Systems of Support      [Program Details]
Award Period: 5 years (07/01/2019 - 06/30/2024) Award Amount: $1,499,572
Type: Other Goal Award Number: R324N180020

Co-Principal Investigator: Simonsen, Brandi

Other Key Team Members: Sugai, George; Horner, Robert (University of Oregon); Fien, Hank (University of Oregon); Petscher, Yaacov (Florida State University)

A Research Network involves several teams of researchers who are working together to address a critical problem or issue in special education. The objective is to encourage information sharing, build new knowledge, and assist policymakers and practitioners to strengthen education policies and programs and improve student education outcomes. The Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) Network is examining MTSS that integrates both academic and behavioral support systems within elementary schools. There are four Research Teams and one Network Lead. Research Teams are conducting a variety of investigations that cover development, evaluation, and/or measurement activities.

Purpose: The MTSS Network Lead will provide the organizational structure needed to allow the Network to run smoothly, foster collaborative efforts across the Research Teams, and ensure that the Network achieves its research and leadership goals.

Network Lead Activities: The activities of the MTSS Network Lead have three overarching, primary functions:

  1. Administration and Coordination of the Network. The Network Lead will organize the overarching collaboration among Research Teams. This will include hosting two in-person annual Network meetings in Year 1, and one in-person meeting in Years 2 through 5. The Network Lead will also guide the development of a shared vision of integrated MTSS, foster alignment of assessments and/or methodological approaches across teams, provide access to the MTSS Network research and database, and lead the dissemination and training activities described below.
  2. Research Synthesis and Dissemination of Network Products.
    • The Network Lead will conduct a final, comprehensive synthesis of key findings from the projects completed by each Research Team. The synthesis will describe the research findings, discuss the similarities and differences in findings across studies, and identify areas for future research.
    • The Network Lead will engage in ongoing dissemination activities with other members of the Network to develop products about integrated MTSS in elementary school that inform policy and practice. In addition to the research synthesis, products will include briefs and reports for policymakers and practitioners, peer-reviewed publications, and presentations for a range of stakeholders. The Network Lead will ensure that the final research products are accurate, clear, and accessible to a range of users, including policymakers, practitioners, and researchers.
    • The Network Lead will develop and maintain a Network website to support communication among Network team members and dissemination of research findings to policymakers, practitioners, and the broader public. The website will house the Network's resources, research papers, and products.
    • In the final year of the Network, the Network Lead will organize a National MTSS Conference for researchers, policymakers, and practitioners. The aims of this conference are to disseminate key findings of individual research teams, highlight the work of early career scholars in the Network, and share the work of other researchers studying integrated MTSS.
  3. Early Career Training. The Network Lead will coordinate cross-team training for early career researchers to prepare a new generation of MTSS scholars with expertise in the relevant content and methodology. These efforts will include identifying relevant research competencies, planning trainings, facilitating individual mentorship, and providing access to relevant project data.

Research Teams: There are four Research Teams as part of the MTSS Network:

  1. Cohesive Integration of Behavior Support within a Process of Data-Based Intervention Intensification (PI: Nathan Clemens, R324N180018). This Research Team will develop and optimize an adaptive intervention within an MTSS model to improve elementary school students’ academic (reading or math) and behavior (self-regulation) outcomes to ultimately improve academic engagement and learning.
  2. Evaluating the Impact of Integrated Behavior and Reading Multi-Tiered Systems of Support in Elementary Schools (PI: Michael Coyne, R324A190012). This Research Team will rigorously evaluate the impact of three tiers of integrated behavior and academic (reading) supports and interventions in Grades K-2.
  3. Measuring Implementation of Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS): Integrated MTSS Fidelity Rubric (IMFR) (PI: Allison Gandhi, R324N190007). This Research Team will develop and test a tool for measuring school-level implementation of MTSS that integrates academic and behavioral supports.
  4. Enhancing Ci3T: Building Professional Capacity for High Fidelity Implementation to Support Students' Educational Outcomes (Project ENHANCE) (PI: Kathleen Lane, R324N190002). This Research Team will conduct an efficacy trial of a comprehensive, 3-tiered model that integrates academic, behavioral, and social learning supports, as well as develop professional learning structures for moving the system to scale.