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Runge Named Outstanding Researcher

Dr. Timothy Runge has been named this year’s Outstanding Researcher in the College of Education and Educational Technology and will be honored with a reception in the Breezedale Library on November 4, 2009.

With Dr. Mark Staszkiewicz, Dr. Runge contracted with the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education, and the Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network (PaTTAN) to conduct a programmatic evaluation of PaTTAN’s School-Wide Positive Behavior Support (SWPBS) framework implemented in thirty-three schools across the Commonwealth from 2007 to 2009. SWPBS is a three-tiered approach to addressing the behavioral, social, emotional, and academic needs of all students across all school environments. The goal of SWPBS primary level prevention is to create a prosocial environment in which desirable student behavior is recognized and reinforced systematically and purposefully. At the secondary level of intervention, students who are at-risk for academic, behavioral, social, or emotional difficulties are provided additional levels of support. The tertiary level of intervention is student-centered and family-oriented and often results in positive behavior support plans and intensive wrap-around services for the student and family.

Drs. Runge and Staszkiewicz completed a comprehensive programmatic evaluation of Pennsylvania’s SWPBS framework, analyzing a variety of academic and behavioral data from cohort schools. Recently, these principal investigators secured a continuation of the contract to conduct the SWPBS programmatic evaluation for 2009–2010. Of particular note to the 2009–2010 investigation is the expansion of the initiative to an additional fifty schools, thus creating opportunities for more sophisticated data analyses.

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