|Title:||Project RISE: Examining Teachers' Reading Instruction, Supports, and Expertise for Students with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities|
|Principal Investigator:||Lindstrom, Esther||Awardee:||Lehigh University|
|Program:||Early Career Development and Mentoring [Program Details]|
|Award Period:||4 years (7/1/2021 - 6/30/2025)||Award Amount:||$699,923|
Mentors: Elizabeth Swanson; Lee Kern; Stephanie Al Otaiba
Purpose: The Principal Investigator (PI) will conduct a program of research to examine reading instruction for elementary school students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and how it relates to their reading growth. The PI will also participate in mentoring and training activities to develop expertise in longitudinal data analysis, school-based research, open science practices, and grant writing and management. Research has identified characteristics of effective instruction for students with IDD. However, the prevalence of research-aligned instruction in classrooms serving students with IDD is relatively unknown, and few studies have investigated the relation between special educators' classroom instruction and the reading growth of students with IDD. Thus, the goal of the current project is to examine the associations among reading instruction (content and practices), reading growth for students with IDD, and student- and teacher-level characteristics.
Research Plan: The PI will use a multi-cohort longitudinal design to examine the following three research questions: (1) What types of reading instruction (practices and content) do special education teachers provide to students with IDD in grades 1-4? (2) What are the patterns of reading growth demonstrated by students with IDD and what types of reading practices and content are related to greater growth? (3) Are there student-level (cognitive, behavioral, linguistic) characteristics or teacher-level skills, such as knowledge of reading development, that moderate the relation between instruction and growth? During Years 1-3, the PI will recruit three cohorts of students (for a total of 100 students) and their special education teachers. In Year 1, the PI will recruit the first cohort and collect students' IEPs and data on their cognition, reading, and behavior in the fall. Reading progress monitoring measures will be collected at several timepoints throughout the year, and reading and language outcomes will be assessed in the fall and spring. In the fall, teachers will also complete measures on their knowledge and beliefs related to reading instruction for students with IDD and self-reported reading practices. Observations of reading instruction for participating students will be conducted three times throughout the year. In Year 2, Cohort 2 will be recruited and data collection procedures will be identical to Cohort 1. In spring of Year 2, the PI will conduct follow up testing of Cohort 1 students' reading and language outcomes. In Year 3, Cohort 3 will be recruited and data collection procedures will be identical to Cohorts 1 and 2. In spring of Year 2, the PI will conduct follow up testing of Cohort 1 and 2 students' reading and language outcomes. During Year 4, the PI will conduct follow-up testing of Cohorts 1-3 and analyze all data.
Career Plan: Through a career development plan the PI will develop skills related to (1) longitudinal data analysis, (2) school-based research, (3) open science practices, and (4) grants writing and management. This will be accomplished through methodological workshops, online courses, and regular meetings with mentors.