National Center for the
Dissemination of Disability Research

Webcast 14
Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses of
Single-subject Experimental Designs (SSEDs)

December 4, 2008, 2:00 PM (CST)

About the Webcast

The webcast will highlight the rationale for and potential contributions of systematic reviews and meta-analysis of SSEDs, and discuss issues related to how syntheses of SSEDs differ from traditional systematic reviews and meta-analyses. SSEDs typically rely on within-subject experimental controls and use of time series data to establish the effectiveness of an intervention (Kennedy, 2005). The adoption of evidence-based practice (EBP) in disability, health care and rehabilitation fields demands that practitioners do not rely on any one individual study but rather the aggregated evidence from a synthesis of studies using SSEDs. In EBP, systematic reviews and meta-analysis of SSEDs constitute one of the most persuasive forms of scientific evidence (Schlosser, 2003). Analog to the meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (Sackett et al., 2000), meta-analyses of SSEDs rank higher on evidence hierarchies than an individual SSED (Schlosser & Raghavendra, 2004). The presenters recently conducted a workshop on this topic, sponsored by the NCDDR.

About the Presenters

Ralf W. Schlosser, PhD, is a Professor and Chair of the Department of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology at Northeastern University. He is also the Director of Clinical Research at the Center for Communication Enhancement, Children’s Hospital Boston at Waltham. He has published several systematic reviews and meta-analyses of single-subject research, and conducted original single-subject experiments to study the effectiveness of augmentative and alternative communication. He is a current NIDRR grantee and former Distinguished Switzer Fellow, as well as a Fellow of the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD) and the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association (ASHA). In addition, together with Dr. Jeff Sigafoos, he is a joint editor of Evidence-Based Communication Assessment and Intervention. Dr. Schlosser is actively involved in the Education Coordinating Group of the Campbell Collaboration (C2), and he serves as co-chair of the C2's new Disability Subgroup.

Oliver Wendt, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in Special Education, and Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences at Purdue University. He teaches graduate courses on assistive technology, autism spectrum disorders, severe disabilities, and single-subject research methods. His professional preparation is in early intervention for children with developmental disabilities. Dr. Wendt has conducted several systematic reviews and meta-analyses of single-subject experiments and is currently investigating non-regression-based procedures for effect size calculations in single-subject research. He is an active member in the Education Coordinating Group and the Methods Group of the Campbell Collaboration. Dr. Wendt serves as chair of the C2's new Special Education Subgroup.

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Presentation Materials

Download Transcript of the Webcast (MS Word 100kb)     

This webcast is supported through the National Center for the Dissemination of Disability Research (NCDDR), which is funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) in the U.S. Department of Education, and is supported in part by ILRU. The opinions and views expressed are those of the presenters and no endorsement by the funding agency should be inferred.

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NCDDR is funded by the
National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR)
Project Number: H133A060028
U.S. Department of Education