Special Educators as Intervention Specialists: Dynamic Systems and the Complexity of Intensifying Intervention for Students With Emotional and Behavioral Disorders

Thomas W. Farmer, Kevin S. Sutherland, Elizabeth Talbott, Debbie S. Brooks, Kate Norwalk, Michelle Huneke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present a dynamic systems perspective for the intensification of interventions for students with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD). With this framework, we suggest behavior involves the contributions of multiple factors and reflects the interplay between the characteristics of the student and the ecologies in which he or she is embedded. Building from a discussion of the application of dynamic systems theory to ecological intervention, we propose four types of data are needed to guide intervention intensification: universal/probabilistic knowledge and strategies, implementation science practice elements, person-oriented developmental analysis, and person-in-context interactional analyses. We discuss practice implications and propose two types of specialists: intervention specialists who provide direct services and have expertise adapting interventions across the academic, behavioral, and social domains and intervention specialist coordinators who direct intervention intensification activities across service sectors and design and monitor long-term intervention plans focused on developmentally relevant outcomes. Finally, we consider implications for research and professional development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-186
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders
Volume24
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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