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Watson College News

WCE Faculty to Participate in National Autism Research Study

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Amy Moody, Sharon Richter and James Stocker are part of an accelerated research team that will conduct interventions for children with Autism this year. The project, initiated by the Special Education Research Accelerator at the University of Virginia, brings together top researchers from across the country to conduct high-quality, large-scale studies to address critical questions in the field of special education.

As members of the SERA research team, the Watson faculty members will conduct science facts intervention for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in grades 2-4. The same intervention will be conducted by researchers across the country in order to improve research efficacy. 

It is exciting to be a part of a national movement to accelerate research in the field of autism,” Moody said. “UVA is leading the way by conducting studies across multiple research sites in efforts to conduct high-quality, large-scale replication studies. Jim Stocker, Sharon Richter, and I are excited to be working together in this endeavor. Hopefully, it will assist us in getting teachers the information they need to make informed decisions in the classroom.”

Moody is a professor of early childhood and special education at the Watson College and director of WCE’s Assistive Technology and Research Lab. Richter is an associate professor of special education and Stocker is an assistant professor of special education. The Watson research team was featured in a Research Partner Spotlight on the SERA website in February.

About SERA

The Special Education Research Accelerator was created to address a need in the field of special education: despite the increase in high-quality, experimental research being funded and conducted in special education, large-scale, representative, replication experiments remain scarce, which impairs the field’s ability to identify robust evidence-based practices across the spectrum of outcomes and populations of learners with disabilities. SERA is a platform for conducting crowdsourced replication research in special education that can help democratize and accelerate the pace of research and accumulation of knowledge in the field.