Introduction to Special Issue: Severe Behavior Disorders of Children and Youth (Volume 26)

By Rutherford, Robert B., Jr.; Sarup, Mathur R. | Education & Treatment of Children, November 2003 | Go to article overview

Introduction to Special Issue: Severe Behavior Disorders of Children and Youth (Volume 26)


Rutherford, Robert B., Jr., Sarup, Mathur R., Education & Treatment of Children


This issue of Education and Treatment of Children marks the 26th annual volume of the Council for Children with Behavioral Disorders Monograph Series on Severe Behavior Disorders of Children and Youth. The 12 articles published here represent a peer-reviewed selection of papers originally presented at the 26th Annual Teacher Educators for Children with Behavior Disorders National Conference held in Tempe, Arizona in November of 2002. This monograph series has been devoted over the years to providing in-depth information on the education and treatment of students with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD). Consulting editors and field reviewers from both Education and Treatment of Children and Behavioral Disorders were responsible for reviewing and selecting these articles for publication. Collectively, these articles address a number of issues and challenges, suggest a number of programmatic education and treatment strategies, and propose directions for future research and practice for students with EBD.

This issue begins with reflective pieces by four of the foremost scholars in the field of emotional and behavioral disorders of children and youth. Steven R. Forness of UCLA, James M. Kauffman of the University of Virginia, C. Michael Nelson of the University of Kentucky, and Lewis Polsgrove of Indiana University, have each contributed thoughtful analyses of how the field has developed and matured and where they see the education and treatment of children and adolescents in the future. Steve's, Jim's, Mike's, and Lew's four reflective pieces also were published in the Summer 2003 issue of Behavioral Disorders with the permission of Bob Dickie, Editor of Education and Treatment of Children, and Rick Brigham, Editor, and Maureen Conroy and Martha Coutinho, Forum Editors of Behavioral Disorders.

The remaining articles in this special issue of ETC represent a crosssection of important research and practice issues in the education and treatment of children and youth with emotional and behavioral disorders. Brian G. Cook, Timothy J. Landrum, Melody Tankersley, and James M. Kauffman outline some of the barriers that have prevented research in the field of behavior disorders from being translated into practice, and describe some steps for overcoming these barriers. They identify the most important need for educators working with students with EBD is to reclaim those special education practices and procedures as the special, different, and effective supplement to general education they were designed to be.

Peggy H. Hester, Heather M. Baltodano, Robert A. Gable, and Stephen W. Tonelson provide a critical examination of early intervention research methodology and practices for children at risk of EBD. These authors selected early intervention research articles to analyze from an initial pool of articles published between 1990 and 2002. They found a high degree of variability in the methodology across studies and an absence of detailed descriptions of procedures in three domains: 1) participant selection criteria, 2) implementation issues, and 3) treatment effects. They then suggest possible ways to strengthen our understanding of early intervention for the prevention of emotional/behavioral disorders.

Lynn K. Wilder and Richard R. Sudweeks describe reliability reporting practices in 106 dissertations that used the Behavior Assessment System for Children (BASC). They found that 97 of these dissertations failed to report reliability data for the subpopulations in their studies and most cited reliability scores only from the BASC Manual. Wilder and Sudweeks propose that the lack of reliability data for behavioral ratings suggests that studies using rating scales as the primary dependent variable may be inherently flawed.

Philip L. Gunter, Martha L. Venn, Jennifer Patrick, Kerrie R. Miller, and Lois Kelly compared momentary time samples of 2, 4, and 6 minutes to continuous recording samples of on-task behavior for three elementaryaged students with emotional/behavioral disorders. …

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