Category Archives: Special Education

rsz_1hayley_flynn_mullins

COE special ed alumnae recognized

ECU College of Education alumnae Hayley Flynn Mullins was recently was named Coordinator of Special Education for Campbell County Public Schools, Virginia.

Hayley graduated in May 2008 with an undergraduate degree in special education, general curriculum with an adapted curriculum add-on.

“I am excited for this opportunity as it will allow me to directly oversee our adapted curriculum classrooms and make meaningful changes to curriculum, procedures and processes in order to better student outcomes,” said Mullins.

Hayley has already begun actively recruiting ECU graduates and is looking forward to the development of other partnerships with the ECU College of Education.

As she shared her news with former professors, she said, “I am so blessed to call ECU my academic ‘home’ and to be able to be sharing such exciting news with those that taught me 8 years ago!”

Based in Rustburg, Virginia, Campbell County Public Schools’ mission is “to provide a world class education that enables every student to choose and pursue any post K12 endeavor” and serves 15 public schools.

EQUIPPED group 2[1]

EQUIPPED Scholars AT Summer Institute a huge success!

The Irene Howell Assistive Technology (IHAT) Center and EQUIPPED grant Co-Principal Investigators, Drs. Alana Zambone and Christopher Rivera, hosted the Assistive Technology (AT) Summer Institute during the week of July 18-22, 2016. The EQUIPPED Summer Institute was developed as a week-long professional development for seven graduate students through the OSEP Personnel Prep grant: EQUIPPED: Engendering High Quality Personnel Preparation for Educators Serving Students with Significant Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. The EQUIPPED grant is designed to prepare initially licensed teachers (B.S.) and teacher-leaders in Special Education and Assistance Technology for NC schools and communities. The teacher-leader goal of the grant provides special educators with tuition and other financial support to complete their MAEd in Special Education – Low Incidence Disabilities Licensure Area and the Graduate Certificate in Assistive Technology (AT). The participating EQUIPPED Scholars were Sara Farwell, Sara Graves, Katie Hancock, Morgan Kennedy, Jillian Kime, Brittney Roper, and April Vernon.EQUIPPED group web

With a focus on assistive technology and best practices for working with students with significant disabilities, the institute started with an expert panel discussion of two district level assistive technology teams- Alamance Burlington Schools represented by Pat Byers, Amy Chinnici, and Sara Hammond; and Winston Salem/Forsyth County Schools represented by Cindy Hall, Emma Sidden, Jennifer Kerr, and Adam Seipel. The teams shared their leadership journeys in their respective fields of education, speech language pathology, occupational therapy, and instructional technology. Furthermore, they discussed system processes and procedures that are used in their counties and tips for working collaboratively with other educators and related service personnel in the area of assistive technology. The following three days of the institute allowed for in-depth expertise training in the area of augmentative and alternative communication, which was facilitated by Lisa Erwin-Davidson of the Center for Literacy and Disability Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill; AT for literacy, which was facilitated by Dr. Pamela Mims from East Tennessee State University; and AT for Math, which was facilitated by Dr. Melissa Hudson of East Carolina University and Julie Brickhouse of Pitt County Schools. In addition to the expert speakers, assistive technology vendors from Attainment and Tobii Dynavox also shared new technologies in AT. The EQUIPPED participants worked on a cumulative project throughout the week of trainings and completed presentations to their peers on the final day of the institute.

The EQUIPPED graduate scholars will return to their schools and communities to engage in AT assignments over the next academic year, including mentoring of new teachers, conducting professional development, and engaging in other leadership activities under the guidance of Dr. Laura King, Director of the IHAT Center, and Dr. Chris Rivera, Co-PI on EQUIPPED. The Summer Institute allowed the scholars to network with their peers in the cohort, as well as a variety of AT experts who work in assistive technology in a variety of capacities. A second EQUIPPED Summer Institute will take place in 2018 for the next cohort of EQUIPPED Scholars.

Daniel Dickerson

Dr. Daniel Dickerson Represents ECU on Fulbright Commission Panel Addressing STEM Study Abroad Partnerships with the Czech Republic

Dr. Daniel Dickerson, associate professor in the Department of Mathematics, Science, and Instructional Technology Education and ECU STEM CoRE (Collaborative for Research in Education) Co-Director, is among a small group of scholars from across the United States selected to sit on a Fulbright Commission sponsored STEM Expert Panel to address university faculty from across the Czech Republic regarding STEM study abroad possibilities. He will join faculty from MIT, Purdue, Michigan, Georgia Tech, and other STEM intensive institutions.

The STEM Expert Panel is part of a capacity building workshop, “Bringing More U.S. Students in STEM to Czech Universities,” sponsored by the Department of State, Office of Global Educational Program, the Fulbright Commission in the Czech Republic in cooperation with Czech universities that offer education in STEM. The workshop will take place in Prague, Czech Republic on April 19-20, 2016 and will be followed by campus visits on April 21-22.

While there, Dickerson will speak to participants during meeting sessions regarding STEM education program development and explore ways to build collaborative efforts with the Czech Republic. Additionally, the US delegation will tour eight Czech universities, attend a reception at the residence of the US Ambassador, and explore innovative ways to enhance global partnerships.

Dr. Dickerson has more than 70 publications, 130 conference presentations, and has been involved in grants as PI, Co-PI, Senior Personnel, or Evaluator totaling over $10 million.

Williams_Evans SITE

SEFR Faculty Present at SITE Conference

Dr. Jennifer B. Williams (Associate Professor, Special Education) and Dr. Chan Evans (Associate Professor, Special Education) participated in the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education (SITE) conference in Savannah, GA on March 25, 2016. Their presentations highlighted teaching and assessment elements that are integral to East Carolina University’s special education undergraduate online program: edTPA Assessment in Distance Education – Implementation, Results, and Lessons Learned in a Special Education Program; and Distance Education Program Use of Multiple Means of Assessment – Embedding Technology Components throughout a Special Education Program. The edTPA presentation was part of a Best Practices round table discussion with teacher trainers and practitioners from Canada and Southeastern USA. Proceedings will be published later this year in LearnTechLib, the Learning & Technology Library.

Rob Lucas

People Need to Know: Confronting History in the Heartland — New book by Dr. Robert M. Lucas

The book,  People Need to Know: Confronting History in the Heartland by Dr. Robert M. Lucas, Assistant Professor in the Department of Elementary & Middle Grades Education, has just been published by Lang Publishing Company. This book chronicles Dr. Lucas’ engaged research with students and their teacher “as they study the defining event in their community’s history.”  Dr. Lucas presents an approach to teaching and learning in social studies that fully engages students to not only learn about the history of their community, but to contribute something of value to their communities and beyond.

Through his start-up research grant, a Library of Congress grant, and his teaching in the Elementary Education program, Dr. Lucas continues to provide teachers and teacher candidates with a meaningful and dynamic evidence-based approach to teaching history and social studies that enables students to “better understand the complex ethical ramifications of historical work and appreciate why learning matters.” (Note: quotations in both paragraphs are from Vendor’s website, below). To learn more about or secure a copy of the book, go to: http://www.amazon.com/People-Need-Know-Confronting-Counterpoints/dp/1433129787.

Go to the College of Education Research Website to engage in a Blog discussion about Engaged Scholarship and Research

Vasti

Vasti Rodriguez nominated for Diane Kent-Parker First Year Teacher Award

Vasti Rodriquez, a 2015 MAT graduate in Special Education, is one of five new teachers across Wake County Schools who have been nominated for the First Year Teacher Award.

The Wake County Public School System Diane Kent-Parker First Year Teacher Award recognizes outstanding first year beginning teachers in elementary, middle, high school and special education. Principals and schools nominate  teachers for demonstrating excellent professional teaching success throughout their initial year. The award is named in honor of Diane Kent-Parker who served in WCPSS Human Resources as Senior Director for Recruitment and Retention.

 

COE Seal - Feature Image

Andrea Blackwood Presents at Conference On Exceptional Children

Andrea Blackwood, Technical Assistance Coordinator for the ECU Teacher Support Program for Learners with Deaf-Blindness and Julie Brickhouse, Special Educator at Eastern Elementary School in Greenville, NC presented at the 2015: 65th Conference on Exceptional Children held in Greensboro, NC November 18th to November 20th. The training addressed instruction designed to facilitate communication and math development for learners with deaf-blindness. Practical methods and examples for connecting communication and math were offered. The Communication Matrix, an assessment tool designed by Charity Rowland for individuals at the earliest stages of communication, was used as a guide to focus on specific communicative behaviors to target for learners with deaf-blindness. Examples of the various levels of communication behaviors within the Communication Matrix were examined in detailed.
Specific ideas for embedding communication and math instruction throughout the school day were presented by Julie Brickhouse. Julie shared examples for planning instruction around math concepts using the principles of the Universal Design for Learning. Participants created a lesson plan around a math topic using the Universal Design for Learning principles that was shared with the group.

The ECU Teacher Support Program for students with deaf-blindness provides technical assistance and support to teachers and other professionals who serve students that qualify for the deaf-blind registry. The Teacher Support Program also provides professional development and training. Please use the link below for more information on the ECU Teacher Support Program for students with deaf-blindness.

http://www.ecu.edu/cs-educ/sefr/sped/dbproject.cfm

SCEC

SCEC Holds Holiday Gathering

The Student Council for Exceptional Children (SCEC) pre-professional club recently celebrated their Fall Holiday Gathering at Dr. Melissa Hudson’s home. The officers and members took time to reflect on the accomplishments of the club for the Fall semester, make plans for the upcoming Spring semester, and spend time bonding over good food and fun activities with their peers and faculty. Happy Holidays to the College of Education from SCEC!

Project SEARCH copy

Sara Graves, Special Education Alumna, Highlighted on WITN for Project SEARCH

ECU Special Education alumna and graduate student, Sara Graves, was recently highlighted on WITN for her work with a new national program at Vidant Medical Center, Project SEARCH. The focus of Project SEARCH is transition and job skills training for individuals with developmental disabilities. The students participating in the program also work in three internship settings at the hospital where they apply the skills they are learning. Congratulations, Sara, for your outstanding work — and for representing ECU College of Education, Special Education so well!

Sara Graves and Project SEARCH on WITN

ICERI2015 Conf

Drs. Williams and King Give Virtual Presentations at iCERi 2015

Dr. Jennifer B. Williams (Associate Professor, Special Education) and Dr. Laura H. King (Associate Professor, Special Education) recently completed two virtual presentations at the International Conference of Education, Research, and Innovation (ICERI) held in Seville, Spain on November 16-18, 2015.

The first presentation, Using Multiple Means of Assessment on Pre-service Teacher Learning to Drive Data Based Curricular Change, highlighted the Special Education program area’s cyclical approach to program evaluation through data collected in each required course in the Special Education plan of study. Data is collected from multiple means of assessment through course assignments which are collected through Taskstream; program level discussions aligned with stated assessment outcomes via Tracdat then take place to allow for full faculty engagement in sharing data across the program. This cyclical approach to assessment based program evaluation allows for a strong foundation of data based decisions regarding pedagogy, content, and assessment (both formative and summative).

The second presentation, Cultivating Assistive Technology Expertise in Pre-Service Teachers through a Professional Development Model, highlighted the infusion of required professional development sessions on a variety of assistive technology topics and products into the Special Education course of study. Special education teacher candidates submit documentation of completion of all required sessions in their culminating special education technology course. They build and demonstrate leadership characteristics through the development of a capstone presentation on assistive technology. These presentations are offered to different audiences and allow candidates to build leadership capacity through experiences of a professional conference.