New OSEP EI Grant Awarded to Dr. Lisa Knoche

Dr. Lisa Knoche, from the University of Nebraska Lincoln, will lead a grant-funded research study recently awarded by OSEP entitled: Coaching in Early Intervention (CEI): Promoting Outcomes for Infants/Toddlers w/Disabilities through Evidence-Based Practices. This four-year project, which began in November 2020, will build upon Nebraska’s current work with the three improvement strategies and aims to improve outcomes for infants/toddlers with disabilities and their families through the refinement, implementation, and evaluation of a systematic and sustainable coaching system to reinforce the use of evidence-based practices by service providers and services coordinators.

In order to measure impact and effectiveness of Nebraska's early intervention improvement strategies, the following evaluations were completed:

Based on the findings from the Kuhn-Higgins 2019 study: Evaluation of Quality Early Intervention Home Visit in Nebraska, and the recommendation of the 2020 RDA stakeholder group, Dr. Miriam Kuhn from the University of Nebraska Omaha and Dr. Johanna Higgins, Independent Consultant, designed and conducted a mixed method study to better understand and provide guidance regarding (1) how the Getting Ready framework supports Nebraska Services Coordinators (SCs) in fulfilling their identified roles and responsibilities in Early Intervention (EI), (2) barriers to using the GR framework for home visits experienced by trained SCs, and (3) the frequency and purpose of Services Coordinator- EI Provider co-visits as part of service delivery.

In 2019, Dr. Miriam Kuhn from the University of Nebraska Omaha and Dr. Johanna Higgins from the University of Nebraska Lincoln conducted a qualitative study to better understand family, services coordinator (SC) and early intervention (EI) provider experiences with routines-based home visits utilizing the Getting Ready approach.

In 2019, Dr. Kerry Miller from the University of Nebraska Medical Center conducted a quantitative/qualitative study to determine:

  • added value of the routines-based home visit strategy (Getting Ready) to the overall results of SSIP implementation, and 
  • improvement in quality of EI home visits since implementation of the routines-based home visit strategy

In addition to the home visit study above, the Co-Leads also contracted with Dr. Miller to evaluate the influence of the three improvement strategies on parent’s perceptions of self-efficacy.

In 2019 the Co-Leads entered a partnership with the University of Nebraska- Lincoln (UNL) for Comprehensive Personnel Development.  The partnership arose out of a need to increase the number of professionals with early intervention coursework specific to child development, home visiting, and working with families.  Dr. Johanna Higgins of UNL, served as the Project Director and submitted the following report of course-related data thus far:

In 2018, Dr. Miriam Kuhn conducted a research study to evaluate the practices of EI professionals and experiences of families in PRTs after systematic training in and implementation of the RBI and development of high quality, functional IFSP outcomes.

In 2016, Kerry Miller conducted a small study of the current status of home visits to determine content for training and technical assistance for quality routines based home visits.  

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