College of Education and Human Development

Department of Educational Psychology

Special Education faculty, staff, students, and alumni attend Gatlinburg Conference

The UMN faculty, staff, students, and alumni at the 56th Gatlinburg Conference.
The UMN faculty, staff, students, and alumni at the 56th Gatlinburg Conference.

Many of the Department of Educational Psychology's special education program faculty, staff, students, and alumni attended and presented at the 56th Gatlinburg Conference in Kansas City, Missouri. The Gatlinburg Conference is focused on bringing together scientists from around the world to discuss intellectual and developmental disability (IDD) research and collaborate. This year's conference theme was about the early life identification of IDDS.

Among those who attended the conference from Ed Psych's special education program were faculty and staff Breanne Byiers, Alyssa Merbler, Frank Symons, and Jason Wolff, students Laura Chubb, Caroline Roberts, Phuong Tran, Hannah Beavis, Emma Worthley, and special education alumni Adele Dimian, Jessica Simacek, and Jaclyn Gunderson. Dimian and Simacek are also the Director and Associate Director of the TeleOutreach Center at the UMN Institute on Community Integration. Many presented IDD research and spoke during discussions and panels, with their papers on IDDs used throughout the conference.

At the conference, Jason Wolff and Jessica Simacek were co-chairs for the symposium, "Novel approaches to very early behavioral intervention for children with or at elevated likelihood for neurodevelopmental disabilities." During this, Adele Dimian and Jessica Simacek were speakers.

Posters and their presenters on exhibit at the Gatlinburg Conference:

  • Interdisciplinarity and self-injury: Toward and inclusive research and treatment paradigm by Caroline Roberts
  • Actigraphy-derived sleep health, stability, and associations with clinical features in Rett syndrome by Alyssa Merbler
  • Utility of the iButtonĀ® for measurement of body temperature circadian rhythms in Rett syndrome by Breanne Byiers
  • Iterative development of a theoretically based intervention for infants at elevated likelihood of neurodevelopmental disabilities: Feasibility and acceptability by Emma Worthley
  • Examining self-injurious behavior among children with autism, Down syndrome, and typical development at school age by Laura Chubb
  • Characteristics associated with challenging behaviors among individuals with cardiofaciocutaneous syndrome by Adele Dimian
  • Similarities in Quality of the Home Environment among School-Age Children with and without Siblings on the Autism Spectrum by Phuong Tran