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Get Ready for Part Two of “Emerging Trends in Special Education Technology: A Doctoral Scholar Symposium”

Authors: Samantha Goldman; info@ciddl.org

CIDDL is excited to announce our second webinar highlighting the innovative work of doctoral students across the country. In this webinar, entitled “Emerging Trends in Special Education Technology: A Doctoral Scholar Symposium,” four researchers will share their current work and future plans as they relate to special education and the impact on teacher and personnel preparation. If you missed the last webinar, be sure to check it out!

The webinar will occur on April 10, 2024, at 9:30 am PST, 11:30 am CST, and 12:30 pm EST. Be sure to mark your calendar and RSVP to attend this free webinar highlighting the future of special education research.

Panelists

Lauryn M. Castro, M.A. CCC-SLP, is pursuing her Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching with a specialization in Special Education at the University of Texas at San Antonio. She serves as a graduate research assistant on a project examining and piloting assistive technologies for students who are blind or visually impaired to make computer programming instruction more accessible. She is a funded scholar through the National Science Foundation's Research on Emerging Technologies for Teaching and Learning (RETTL). Her research interests include improving assessment and intervention approaches for culturally and linguistically diverse exceptional learners; children with expressive and receptive language disorders, articulation, and phonological disorders; and leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning models to enhance augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). 

Roba Hrisseh is receiving her Ph.D. in special education and assistive technology from George Mason University (GMU) in May of 2024. She is an OSEP scholar and past intern at OSEP. She teaches undergraduate courses in special education and assistive technology at GMU. Her research interests revolve around assistive technology, educational technology, STEM instruction for students with disabilities, and Universal Design for Learning. Before this, Roba worked with students with disabilities for over ten years in nonprofits, public schools, charter schools, and academia, mainly as an assistive/educational technology specialist.

Reagan L. Mergen, M.S. (she/her) is a Ph.D. candidate and ASPIRE scholar at George Mason University (GMU) with experience as a special and general educator teaching K-12+ students in various settings. She has served as an instructor at both GMU and Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, preparing pre-service educators. Reagan’s Ph.D. research interests include educational technology and universal design for learning (UDL), promoting learner agency and outcomes in mathematics interventions, and preparing teachers to educate all learners through UDL and culturally responsive, evidence-based practices. Through her work as a graduate research assistant, she is involved in multiple research projects, including a systematic review and meta-analysis investigating the impact of UDL-based interventions on student learning and WEGO, which is a series of projects examining the effects of a technology-based writing intervention package on students' writing and teachers’ data-based decision making. She co-authors several research-based scholarly works and has presented at national and regional conferences. Through the ASPIRE project, she had the opportunity to intern on Project COOL: A Scalable UDL Coaching Model for CAST. Reagan is a member of several professional organizations and is the co-editor of the New Times for DLD, a publication of the Division for Learning Disabilities (DLD) of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). She is also the immediate Past President of the PhD in Education Student Organization (PESO) at GMU. In her free time, she loves to go on adventures with her husband and two children, run, ride a mountain bike, and listen to audiobooks and podcasts.

Juli Taylor is a doctoral candidate at the University of Kansas in the Department of Special Education, specializing in Policy and Systems studies. Her research involves policy and systems change toward inclusion and teacher retention. Her published work is centered around federal special education policy analysis, and her dissertation involves three studies examining teachers’ rationale for leaving the field of education, including whether and how these decisions are impacted by educational policy and politics.

Moderators

Samantha Goldman is a third year doctoral student in special education at the University of Kansas, Lawrence, Ks where she specializes in instructional design, technology, and innovation. She is a graduate research assistant for the Center for Innovation, Design, and Digital Learning (CIDDL). Her research focuses on leveraging existing, emerging, and innovative technologies and evidence-based practices with high-quality instruction to empower teacher education, pre-service special education teachers, and students with disabilities/ struggling learners to improve writing outcomes.


Yerin Seung is a first-year doctoral student in special education at the University of Kansas. She specializes in instructional design, technology, and innovation and is a graduate research assistant for the Center for Innovation, Design, and Digital Learning (CIDDL). Her research centers on leveraging technology such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) for personalized learning in inclusive education and how students’ interaction with technology, learners, and teachers influences academic achievement and engagement.

Taehyun (Teddy) Kim is a first-year doctoral student in special education at the University of Kansas. He also specializes in instructional design, technology, and innovation. He is a graduate research assistant for the Center for Innovation, Design, and Digital Learning (CIDDL) and Coaching on Learning (COOL). His research interests are focused on Universal Design for Learning (UDL) implementation and measurement for consistency of UDL. He believes UDL can be a great framework for inclusive education, education for all.

Be Part of the Conversation

Do you share research interests with our panelists? Have questions you want answered about their work? Join our community to engage in conversation about the research interests of our panelists. 

Did you know that our CIDDL community has a space dedicated to doc students where they can share their research and collaborate with other scholars in different programs? Join the Doc Student space in the community!