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Research Overview

The Center supports research and evaluation covering a range of disability-related topics. Research initiatives at the Center include empirical research, state-wide needs assessments, poster presentations and symposia, and a Research Core Function Committee chaired by Dr. Leo Schlosnagle, who serves as the Center's Research and Resource Development Manager.

Empirical research projects at the CED

Center faculty, staff and trainees conduct empirical research focusing on a broad array of disability-related topics. Recent and current research projects cover disability-related topics including:

  • Service provision by one of the Center's assistive technology programs
  • Sleep patterns and decision-making ability among individuals who have experienced a traumatic brain injury

Empirical research at the Center is also conducted in collaboration with faculty and students from a variety of departments across West Virginia University. Recent collaborative projects include research on topics such as:

  • Well-being of people who provide care to individuals with traumatic brain injury (in collaboration with the WVU Dept. of Occupational Therapy).
  • The effectiveness of an early intervention for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders in a school environment (in collaboration with the WVU Dept. of Technology, Learning and Culture)

State-wide needs assessments at the CED

Needs assessments are conducted to gain information and input directly from people with disabilities, their families, and the professionals who serve them throughout West Virginia. This information is used for a variety of purposes, including the Center's strategic planning, service prioritization, and as a basis for identifying appropriate topics for which to develop resources.

Poster presentations and symposia

CED faculty, staff and student trainees regularly present research and evaluation findings at regional and national conferences. Previous conference presentations have focused on topics such as: employment services for people with disabilities, assistive technology needs in rural areas, and autism insurance legislation-among many others.

The Research Core Function Committee at the CED

One of six core function committees at the Center, the Research Core Function Committee is comprised of approximately 7 CED faculty and staff with research expertise, and one consumer representative with research expertise. This committee is tasked with facilitating research and evaluation at the CED to increase the knowledge base for promoting independence, inclusion, and quality of life in people who have developmental and other disabilities. This research and evaluation helps to inform practice, policy, and administration to benefit the consumers and families who the CED serves.

Resources on Disabilities and Disability-Related Research