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IES Grant

Title: I in the IEP
Center: NCSER Year: 2006
Principal Investigator: Stodden, Robert Awardee: University of Hawaii
Program: Systems, Policy, and Finance      [Program Details]
Award Period: 7/1/2006 to 6/30/2009 Award Amount: $1,500,000
Type: Development and Innovation Award Number: R324J060033

Funded under the Individualized Education Programs topic prior to the establishment of the Systemic Interventions and Policies for Special Education topic.

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to develop and obtain preliminary evidence of the efficacy of two interventions designed to equip educators, administrators, and parents with the necessary tools to support students with disabilities from indigenous cultures to engage with and benefit from their own Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings.

Project Activities: The researchers are developing two interventions for students in grades 11 and 12 with high incidence disabilities. Teachers, administrators, family members of students with disabilities, students, and other related staff will be the targeted group for training on these interventions. The first intervention is a professional development module for education practitioners that infuses cultural competence strategies within a series of self (student) directed IEP strategies. The education practitioners will be equipped with the skills necessary to teach students how to direct their own IEP's within the context of their culture. The second intervention is a cultural brokering model designed to bridge communication and cultural gaps between parents, students, and educators by training persons from indigenous cultures to serve as cultural mentors. The cultural mentors will support parents in learning more about the IEP process and will expand upon strategies to further support the learning needs of their children. Both interventions will be created and piloted simultaneously in high schools in Hawai'i during Years 1 and 2, thus allowing the educator, family member and student input into model development. Year 3 will include a test in additional high schools in Hawai`i, Utah, and Alaska. The two interventions will be compared to a third intervention that is a combination of the two and a business as usual control group.

Products: The expected outcomes from this study include:

  1. Two developed interventions to better equip educators, administrators, and parents with support tools for secondary students with high incidence disabilities,
  2. Published reports on the potential impact of these interventions on key outcomes of students with disabilities, and
  3. Presentations on the feasibility of these models for further efficacy testing and for implementing at scale.

Setting: The high schools are located in Hawai`i, Alaska, and Utah.

Population: Approximately 280 high school students (grades 11 and 12) from indigenous cultures, their parents, teachers, administrators, and other related staff will participate. Students will be identified with a high incidence disability (i.e., specific learning disability, serious emotional disturbance, and mild mental retardation, as defined within the regulations for IDEA 2004). Students will be from an indigenous culture based on self-identification as an American Indian, Native Alaskan, or Native Hawaiian.

Intervention: Two interventions are being developed: (1) Professional Development Intervention and (2) Cultural Brokering Intervention.

The Professional Development Intervention will consist of professional development activities for education practitioners to infuse cultural competence strategies within a series of self (student) directed IEP strategies. These activities will provide educators with a range of practices and strategies that can be flexibly adapted to meet the individual needs of students, either as a group or on an individual basis. During the process teachers will learn more about the culture, thus become more culturally competent. The development phase will be guided by the following considerations including: providing a cultural foundation, improving basic life skills, and preparing students to lead IEP meetings.

The Cultural Brokering Intervention is a cultural brokering model designed to bridge communication and cultural gaps between parents, students, and educators by training persons from indigenous cultures to serve as cultural mentors. This intervention will be implemented by volunteer indigenous individuals recruited by the Parent Training and Information (PTI) Center in Hawai`i, Utah, and Alaska. The PTIs will establish personal relationships with families, support parents in learning more about the IEP process, and work with them to identify and resolve conflicts and misunderstandings that may be hindering collaboration with professionals.

Research Design and Methods: During Year 1, both interventions will be developed and piloted with data being collected and used as a tool for revising intervention modules. In Year 2, a quasi-experimental design, with four schools in Hawai'i being matched on key variables, will be implemented to pilot and revise the complete interventions. During Year 3 a larger quasi-experimental study with 16 schools and approximately 240 students will be conducted in additional high schools in Hawai`i, Utah, and Alaska to determine the potential efficacy of the two interventions as compared to each other, and to a third intervention that is a combination of the two, and a business as usual control group.

Control Condition: The control group will include students with disabilities from indigenous cultures, their families and school personnel who will not receive the treatment but continue with "business as usual".

Key Measures: Student records (e.g., school attendance, GPA's, behavioral referral, standardized test scores, and high school exit exams) and the cultural competence skills of school personnel will be reviewed prior to and after intervention has been administered. In addition, students' and parents; engagement in the IEP process during each IEP meeting will be measured, and focus groups targeting school personnel, student, and parent acceptability of the interventions will be conducted. Finally, students will complete questionnaires regarding their post school plans immediately following the intervention and three months later.

Data Analytic Strategy: A combination of quantitative and qualitative data analysis strategies will be utilized to show evidence of the potential efficacy of each intervention as stand-alone interventions and in combination.


Book chapter

Stodden, R.A., Abhari, K, and Kong, E. (2015). Secondary School Preparation & Transition of Youth with Disabilities. Advances in Learning and Behavioral Disabilities (pp. 7–30). Emerald Group Publishing Limited .

Book, edition specified

Stodden, R.A., and Roberts, K.D. (2010). Postsecondary Participation of Students with Special Needs. (3rd ed.). New York: Elsevier. doi:10.1016/B978–0–08–044894–7.01151–9

Journal article, monograph, or newsletter

Black, R.S., and Leake, D.W. (2011). Teachers' Views of Self-Determination for Students With Emotional/Behavioral Disorders: The Limitations of an Individualistic Perspective. International Journal of Special Education, 26(1): 147–161. Full text

Folk, E.D., Yamamoto, K.K., and Stodden, R.A. (2012). Implementing Inclusion and Collaborative Teaming in a Model Program of Postsecondary Education for Young Adults With Intellectual Disabilities. Journal of Policy and Practice in Intellectual Disabilities, 9(4): 257–269. doi:10.1111/jppi.12007

Leake, D. W (2015). Problematic Data on How Many Students in Postsecondary Education Have a Disability. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 28(1): 73–87. Retrieved from Full text

Leake, D.W. (2012). Self-Determination Requires Social Capital, Not Just Skills and Knowledge. Review of Disability Studies, 8(1): 34–43.

Leake, D.W., and Boone, R. (2007). Multicultural Perspectives on Self-Determination From Youth, Parent, and Teacher Focus Groups. Career Development for Exceptional Individuals, 30(2): 104–115. doi:10.1177/08857288070300020101

Leake, D.W., and Skouge, J.R. (2012). Introduction to the Special Issue: Self-Determination as a Social Construct: Cross-Cultural Considerations. Review of Disability Studies, 8(1): 5–10.

Leake, D.W., and Stodden, R.A. (2014). Higher Education and Disability: Past and Future of Under Represented Populations. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 27(4): 399–408. Full text

Leake, D.W., Burgstahler, S., and Izzo, M. (2011). Promoting Transition Success for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students With Disabilities: The Value of Mentoring. Creative Education, 2(2): 121–129. doi:10.4236/ce.2011.22017

Leake, D.W., Burgstahler, S., Rickerson, N., Applequist, K., Izzo, M., Picklesimer, T., and Arai, M. (2006). Literature Synthesis of Key Issues in Supporting Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students With Disabilities to Succeed in Postsecondary Education. Journal on Postsecondary Education and Disability, 18(2): 149–165.

Park, H., Roberts, K., and Stodden, R. (2012). Practice Brief: Faculty Perspectives on Professional Development to Improve Efficacy When Teaching Students with Disabilities. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 25(4): 377–384. Full text

Park, H.J., Roberts, K., Takahashi, K., Delise, D., and Stodden, R. (2014). Using Text-to-Speech Software to Improve Reading Outcomes Among Secondary Struggling Readers. Closing the Gap, 33(1): 6–8.

Parrish, P., and Stodden, R.A. (2009). Aligning Assessment and Instruction With State Standards for Children With Significant Disabilities. TEACHING Exceptional Children, 41(4): 46 – 55.

Roberts, K.D., and Stodden, R.A. (2006). Postsecondary Education Options for Young Adults With Disabilities: What Families Need to Consider. Impact, 19(2).

Roberts, K.D., Takahashi, K., Park, H., and Stodden, R.A. (2012). Supporting Struggling Readers in Secondary School Science Classes. Teaching Exceptional Children, 44(6): 40–48.

Skouge, J., Kelly, M., Roberts, K.D., Leake, D., and Stodden, R.A. (2007). Technologies for Self-Determination for Youth With Developmental Disabilities. Education and Training in Developmental Disabilities, 42(4): 475–482.

Stodden, R.A., Yamamoto, K.K., Folk, E., Kong, E., and Otsuji, D.N. (2013). Pursuing Quality Evidence: Applying Single-Subject Quality Indicators to Non-Experimental Qualitative Educational Research. Education and Training in Autism and Developmental Disabilities, 48(4): 491–503.

Takahashi, K., Roberts, K., Brown, S., Park, H., and Stodden, R. (2012). Preparing Young Adults With Disabilities for STEM Careers: The Pacific Alliance Model. Impact, 25(1): 16. Full text

Yamamoto, K.K., Stodden, R.A., and Folk, E.D.C. (2014). Inclusive Postsecondary Education: Reimagining the Transition Trajectories of Vocational Rehabilitation Clients With Intellectual Disabilities. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 40(1): 59–71. doi:10.3233/JVR-130662