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Communication Disorders & Special Education:Research

Laboratory Facilities

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Oral Preschool Research Program

Department faculty engage in research in the Oral Preschool classroom to examine approaches to optimize communication development and learning in children who are deaf or hard of hearing with cochlear implants or hearing aids. The classroom annually has 4-6 children who work with a deaf education teacher on skills development. Research techniques are implemented to understand factors that promote learning.

Neuroimaging Laboratory

This lab houses hardware and software to implement functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), a neuroimaging tool used to study the neural correlates of behavior, particularly neural activation in the prefrontal cortex. Studies focus on examining patterns of activation associated with different language behaviors in individuals with neurologic conditions, such as stroke, and changes in those patterns associated with speech-language therapy activities.

Communication Sciences & Disorders Research Laboratory

The CSD lab houses audiology equipment, a sound booth, and eye-tracking equipment. Three computers are in the lab to support special software for analysis of child language samples and eye-tracking data used in studies of auditory-visual processing and attentional control.

Faculty Research & Publications

Family-centered early intervention: Supporting infants and toddlers in natural environments.

Family-centered early intervention: Supporting infants and toddlers in natural environments. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing. Raver, S. A., & Childress, D. (2015).

Oxford Handbook of Aphasia and Language Disorders.

Oxford Handbook of Aphasia and Language Disorders. New York: Oxford University Press. Raymer, A.M., & Rothi, L.J.G. (Eds.) (2017).

Alonzo, C.N., Yeomans-Maldonado, G., Murphy, K.A., Bevens, B., & LARRC (2016). Predicting second grade listening comprehension using pre-kindergarten measures. Topics in Language Disorders, 36(4), 312-333. doi:10.1097/tld.0000000000000102

Bobzien, J., & Grissett, G., Barker, C., Donnelly, M., Khabo, B., Largena, K., & Roach, S. (2015). Making the link: Providing academic and clinical application training to rehabilitation staff in the Dominican Republic. Journal of Social Sciences Research, 2, 4-13.

Bobzien, J., Richels, C., Schwartz, K, Raver, S. A., Hester, P., & Morin, L. (2015). Using repeated reading and explicit instruction to teach vocabulary to preschoolers with hearing loss. Infants and Young Children, 28(3), 262-280. doi: 10.1097/IYC.0000000000000039

Britt, M., Donohue, T., & Judge, S. (2016). A Teacher Immersion Residency Program That Prepares Highly Effective Educators: An Innovative Model. The International Journal of Pedagogy and Curriculum, 23(3), 13-24.

Chen, C.H., Bobzien, J., Giannakos, M., Bruhn, A., Brueggeman, A., Mohrehkesh, S., Zhang, M., Hsu, W., & Chrisochoides, N. (2015). Familiar video stories as a means for children with autism: An analytics approach. International Conference on Healthcare Informatics (ICHI), 2014, 368-373. doi: 10.1109/ICHI.2015.52

Chezan, L.C., Layden, S.J., Barnhill, G., & Hoffner Barthold, C. (2017). The Virginia Applied Behavior Analysis Consortium: Preparing behavior analysis using a collaborative model. Behavior Analysis in Practice. doi: 10.1007/s40617-017-1095-7

Chezan, L.C., Gable, R., McWhorter, G., & White, S. (2017). Current perspectives on interventions for self-injurious behavior of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: A systematic review of the literature. Journal of Behavioral Education, 26, 293-329. doi: 10.1007/s10864-017-9269-4

Chezan, L.C., & Drasgow, E. (2017). A comparison of continuous and discontinuous data collection systems on the acquisition, generalization, and maintenance of tacting in three young children with autism spectrum disorders during discrete-trial training. Evidence-Based Communication Assessment and Intervention, 11, 1-8. doi: 10.1080/17489539.2017.1311402

Chezan, L.C., Petcu, S., & Van Horn, M.L. (2017). A preliminary investigation on employment data collect in postsecondary education for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability. doi: 10.3109/13668250.2017.1283007

Chezan, L.C., Drasgow, E., Legg, J., & Hollborn, A. (2016). Effects of conditional discrimination training and choice opportunities on manding in two young children with autism and language delays. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities, 28, 557-579. doi: 10.1007/s10882-016-9493-1

Chezan, L.C., Drasgow, E., Martin, C.A., & Halle, J. (2016). Negatively-reinforced mands: An examination of resurgence to existing mands in two children with autism and language delays. Behavioral Modification, 40, 347-376. doi: 10.1177/0145445516648664

Drasgow, E., Martin, C.A., Chezan, L.C., Wolfe, K., & Halle, J. (2016). Mand training: An examination of response class structure in three children with autism and severe language delays. Behavior Modification, 40, 347-376.

Elmore, J.L., Bruhn, A.M., & Bobzien, J.L. (2016). Interventions for the reduction of dental anxiety and corresponding behavioral deficits in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Journal of Dental Hygiene. 90(2), 111-120.

Gable, R.A. (2016). In search of a scientific basis for teacher preparation. Journal of Social Science and for Humanities, 2, 1-11.

Gable, R.A., & Collins, L.W. (2016). Lessons learned about effective interventions for diverse learners in inclusive settings. Journal of Educational Science, 179-180,7.

Gable, R.A., & Collins, L.W. (2015). Lessons learned from research and experience about inclusive education of students with behavior problems. Journal of Science, 12-15.

Goodman-Scott, E., Bobzien, J., Burgess, M., Melton, R. & Lambert, S. (2016). Counseling children and adolescents with Sensory Processing Disorder: Results of an exploratory national study. Journal of Child and Adolescent Counseling, 0(0), 1-18. doi:10.1080/23727810.2016.1172300

Hilari, K., Klippi, A., Constantinidou, F., Horton, S., Penn, C., Raymer, A., Wallace, S., Zemva, N., & Worrall, L. (2015). An international perspective on quality of life in aphasia: A survey of clinician views and practices from sixteen countries. Folia Phoniatrica & Logopedia, 67 (3), 119-131. doi: 10.1159/000434748

Hsu, W.W., Zhang, M., Chen, C.H., Bobzien, J., Wu, C.T., & Liu, Y.H. (2016). A puzzle-based tool to study individualized perception reactions for children with autism. Systems, Man, and Cybernetics (SMC) 2015, 682-686 doi:10.1109/SMC.2015.129

Johnson, R.K. (2017). Motor learning guided treatment for acquired apraxia of speech. Speech, Language and Hearing. doi:10.1080/2050571X.2017.1379721

Judge, S. & Izuzquiza, D. (2015). Inclusion in the workforce for students with intellectual disabilities: A case study of a Spanish postsecondary education program. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 28(1), 121-127.

Kolkoski, S.M., Bullock, L.M., & Gable, R.A. (2016).Factors associated with student resilience: Perspectives of graduates of alternative education programs. Preventing School Failure, 60, 231-243.

Language and Reading Research Consortium (LARRC), Farquharson K., & Murphy, K.A (2016). Ten steps to conducting a large, multi-site, longitudinal investigation of language and reading in young children. Frontiers in Developmental Psychology, 7:419, 1-16. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2016.00419

Morin, L., & Watson, S. M. R., Hester, P., & Raver, S. (2017). Using bar model drawing to teach word problem solving to students with math difficulties. Learning Disability Quarterly, 40(2), 91-104. doi: 10.1177.0731948717690116

Murphy, K. A., Justice, L. M., O'Connell, A. A., Pentimonti, J. M., & Kaderavek, J. N. (2016). Understanding risk for reading difficulties for preschool children with language impairment. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 1-12. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-L-15-0110

Murphy, K. A., LARRC, & Farquharson, K. (2016). Investigating profiles of lexical quality in preschool and their contribution to first grade reading. Reading and Writing. doi:10.1007/s11145-016-9651-y

Pentimonti, J.M., Murphy, K.A., Justice, L.M., & Kaderavek, J.N. (2015). School Readiness of Children with Language Impairment: Predicting Literacy Skills from Pre-Literacy and Social-Behavioral Dimensions. International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders. doi: 10.1111/1460-6984.12193

Richels, C. G., Schwartz, K. S., Bobzien, J.L., & Raver, S.A. (2016). Structured instruction with modified storybooks to teach morphosyntax and vocabulary to preschoolers who are deaf/hard of hearing. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 21(4), 352-361. doi:10.1093/deafed/enw049

Richels, C. G., Bobzien, J. L., Schwartz, K. S., Raver, S.A., Browning, E. L., & Hester, P. P. (2016). Teachers and peers as communication models to teach grammatical forms to preschoolers with hearing loss. Communication Disorders Quarterly, 37(3), 131-140. doi:10.1177/1525740115598770

Samad, M., Bobzien, J., Harrington, J.W., & Iftekharuddin, K.M. (2016). Non-intrusive optimal imaging of face to probe physiological traits in autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Optics and Laser Technology, 77, 221-228 doi: 10.1016/j.optlasec.2015.09.030

Samad, M.A., Diawara, N., Bobzien, J.L., Harrington, J.A., Witherow, M.A., Iftekharuddin, K.M. (2017). A feasibility study of autism behavioral markers in spontaneous facial, visual, and hand movement response data. IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering doi: 10.1109/TNSRE.2017.2768482

Schwartz, K.S., Ringleb, S., Raymer, A.M., Sandberg, H., & Watson, G. (2015). Development of Trivia Game for speech understanding in background noise. International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 17 (4), 357-366. Doi: 10.3109/17549507.2014.979875.

Simmons-Mackie, N., Raymer, A.M., & Cherney, L. (2016). Communication partner training in aphasia: An updated systematic review. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 97(12), 2202-2221. DOI: 10.1016/j.apmr.2016.03.023.

Watson, S. M. R., Gable, R. A., & Morin, L. L. (2016). The role of executive functions in classroom instruction of students with learning disabilities. International Journal of School and Cognitive Psychology, 3 (1) http://dx.doi.org/10.4172/2469-9837.1000167

Watson, S. M. R., Judge, S., Lopes, J., Oliveira, C., & Jesus, A. C. (2016). Number knowledge and error types of elementary Portuguese children: Implications for instruction. Clinical and Experimental Psychology, 2, 110. http://dx.doi.org/10.4172/2471-2701.1000110.

Watson, S. M. R., Michalek, A. P., & Gable, R. A. (2016). Linking executive functions and written language: Intervention for students with language learning disorders. International Journal of School and Cognitive Psychology, 3(3), 1-8. doi: 10.4172/2469-9837.1000178

Watson, S. R., Richels, C., Michalek, A., & Raymer, A. (2015). Psychosocial treatments for ADHD: A systematic appraisal of the evidence. Journal of Attention Disorders, 19(1) 3-10. DOI: 10.1177/1087054712447857.

Wood-Fields, C., Judge, S., Watson, S. M. R. (2015). Instructional methods that foster the reading development of students with significant intellectual disabilities. Journal of Intellectual Disability - Diagnosis and Treatment, 3, 1-8.

Explore Our Faculty Research Interests


Research Interests

Jonna Bobzien, Ph.D.

Development and implementation of appropriate assessment and instruction for sensory, social, cognitive, and communication skills in students with autism spectrum disorder and/or severe intellectual disability.

Laura Chezan, Ph.D.

Autism spectrum disorder; significant cognitive disabilities; communication interventions; behavior support; single-case experimental design.

Robert Gable, Ph.D.

Exploration of evidence-proven practices and their transfer to the classroom, including the use of functional analysis of challenging behavior of children and adolescents.

Sabra Gear, Ph.D.

Effective teaching methods and learning strategies for teacher and parent education to improve outcomes and school readiness for young children at risk for developing high incidence disabilities.

Annemarie Horn, Ph.D.

Teacher training and coaching with bug-in-ear technology; postsecondary transition and community integration for youth with disabilities; high incidence disabilities; inclusion.

Rachel Johnson, Ph.D.

Influence of principles of motor learning and motivation factors on patient outcomes in speech rehabilitation for neurogenic communication disorders; using functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to measure cortical activity following brain injury; augmentative and alternative communication.

Selena Layden, Ph.D.

Autism spectrum disorder, developmental disabilities, teacher performance, improving implementation of evidence-based practices in the classroom, special education policy.

Anne Michalek, Ph.D.

Contributions of executive attention (i.e. working memory capacity and attentional control) and visual cues during language-based tasks for adults with and without ADHD; scholarship of teaching and learning in inter-professional education.

Kimberly Murphy, Ph.D. Child language disorders; connections between language and literacy; early identification of children at risk for literacy difficulties; intervention for language and literature disorders; evidence-based practice in speech-language pathology.

Stacie Raymer, Ph.D.

Influence of principles of neuroplasticity to optimize rehabilitation outcomes in neurologic communication disorders; auditory processing in challenging listening conditions; evidence-based practice in speech-language pathology.

Corrin Richels, Ph.D.

Investigation of preschool speech and language development in children who stutter and children who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Jane Roitsch, Ph.D. Effects of executive functioning in learning and decision-making; impacts of executive function deficits on cognitive and motor abilities in neurologic disorders.

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