TRI News

Closing the Achievement Gap Through STEM Education

Posted on November 18, 2016

Black square with a white geer on the left and the words STEM Scholars at Western Oregon University

Preparing students for the jobs and careers of the future is a crucial task of any educational system. This can be a challenge in an environment in which many of the jobs that will exist in the near future haven’t yet been created – and in some cases, not yet even dreamed of. How do we prepare students for a future that is constantly unfolding?

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TRI Staff Members Present at NAEYC Conference in Los Angeles

Posted on November 10, 2016

Logo - TRI at Western Oregon University

Staff from TRI's Center on Early Learning and Center on Research, Evaluation and Analysis presented at the National Association for the Education of Young Children annual conference, which took place in Los Angeles, November 2-5, 2016.

Philosophy in Action

Enhancing Executive Function Skills in Young Children

This article contains the presentation documents for each session.

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Three More Years for Campus Against Sexual Assault Program

Posted on November 9, 2016

Logo - CASA Campus Against Sexual Assault

WOU awarded $300,000 to continue work on sexual violence prevention and response.

The U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women awarded $300,000 to The Research Institute (TRI) at Western Oregon University to continue the campus collaboration on sexual and interpersonal violence prevention and response. The WOU Campus Against Sexual Assault (WOU CASA) program, initially funded in 2010, has been renewed for the third time for an additional three years.

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TRI Staff Members Present at DEC's 32nd Annual International Conference on Young Children with Special Needs and Their Families

Posted on October 25, 2016

A race horse with jockey, with a banner under reading Louisville, Kentucky. Save the Date - October 18th - 20th, DEC 2016, A Winning Trifecta, Knowledge, Implementation, and Evaluation of DEC Recommended Practices

This year's DEC conference theme, A Winning Trifecta: Knowledge, Implementation, and Evaluation of DEC Recommended Practices, featured leading experts from around the world in early intervention, early childhood special education, and related disciplines. The conference program is designed to develop the skills and knowledge of those who work with or on behalf of young children with special needs and their families.

TRI staff presented at seven sessions.

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TRI's Serra Acar Appointed as DEC Recommended Practices Ambassador for Oregon

Posted on October 13, 2016

Serra Acar, Ph.D.

TRI's Serra Acar, Ph.D. will serve as a statewide “ambassador” to spearhead use of new recommended practices for the care and education of young children with disabilities throughout Oregon. Acar, project coordinator for The Research Institute at Western Oregon University, joins a select group of 16 experts chosen by the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA) at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute.

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TRI's Child Development Center Creates an Environment to Thrive

Posted on October 4, 2016

By Carey Gilbert

CDC Logo  small hand prints in a circle 

Welcome to the TRI Child Development Center! Here at the Child Development Center (CDC) on the campus of Western Oregon University, children ages 2.5 up to 10 years of age participate in our Preschool and Afterschool Enrichment programs. Both of our programs are designed to serve the students and employees of Western Oregon University and the surrounding community. 

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Study of Qigong Massage on Elementary School-Aged Children with Autism Shows Promising Results

Posted on September 8, 2016

By Mark Schalock and Louisa Silva

A young boy is laying down, three people around him are his neck, chest and torso

As has been recently acknowledged, almost all young children with autism have abnormal responses to touch. That is, they are overly sensitive or under responsive to touch or pain. Since touch is very important to a child’s development it has been suggested that these tactile abnormalities present a barrier that interferes with typical development.

Several randomized control trials conducted by a team of medical professionals and The Research Institute staff with preschool children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have found that a “tactile stimulation protocol,” Qigong Sensory Treatment (QST) massage for autism, has been successful in normalizing responses to touch and decreasing the severity of autism.

This new study looks at the results in older children.

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TRI's Center on Early Learning Hosts Dr. Chris Amirault

Posted on August 31, 2016

CEL Annual Conference 2016 Welcomes Keynote Dr. Chris Amirault

Dr. Chris Amirault

Dr. Chris Amirault is currently an early childhood and non-profit leadership consultant living in Mérida, Mexico. He has served as the President of the Rhode Island NAEYC affiliate, as the Chair of the Council for NAEYC Accreditation, as Executive Director of the NAEYC-accredited Brown/Fox Point Early Childhood Education Center in Providence RI, and in many other leadership capacities.

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TRI-CDC Summer Camp Offers Insight Into 2016-2017 Preschool Program

Posted on August 12, 2016

By Taylor Leech

Two young children at a toy workbench, both are wearing safety glasses, on is wearing a hard hat.

For the second year, the TRI Child Development Center (TRI-CDC) hosts a summer camp for children ages 30 months through 8 years. This camp is a fun place for children to learn about the world around them, while discovering science, exploring nature, and engaging in the creative arts.

This year’s summer camp is a STEM Adventure! STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Each week the children explore a new theme related to an element of STEM. They are making good use of playgrounds, the community, and special guests from across the WOU campus to help enrich their camp experience.

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TRI Creates Mobile App for PSU Program Conference

Posted on August 12, 2016

By Jeff Denton

Drawing of a phone with text: Graduate school of Education - visually impaired learning program

Many people go to conferences every year for work or in support of causes they are passionate about. Conferences offer great opportunities to network and learn strategies to move a cause forward. But conferences can also be overwhelming, with overlapping session schedules and multiple locations, not to mention what to do around town on those off hours.

Many conference hosts have begun to offer their participants online options for navigating all these details. But if an organization would like to make this available, who’s going to build it and do they really have to “reinvent the wheel”, so to speak?

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Study Shows Massage Helps Children with Autism

Posted on August 3, 2016

Photo of a mother embracing her son who is sitting on her lap.

If you are a parent of a child with autism, you probably struggle with the fear that you might never get to hug your child. Maybe you worry that your child will live a life devoid of physical affection and close attachments to others.

A new study shows that for many families, massage therapy can bring surprising results – and a new sense of hope.

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Center on Early Learning Staff Reflect on the 2016 QRIS National Meeting

Posted on July 28, 2016

Center on Early Learning Logo

TRI's Center on Early Learning staff participated in four presentations at the 2016 QRIS National Meeting, hosted by the QRIS National Learning Network and the Build Initiative.

Two TRI staff members presented at the QRIS national conference for the first time. They were both very excited to take this important step in their careers, and to present to a wide audience the important work they have been part of here at TRI.

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Study of Executive Function in Babies Goes International

Posted on July 26, 2016

Patricia Blasco, Ph.D.

TRI's Patricia M. Blasco, Ph.D. presented at the Children’s Rights and Early Intervention Conference, International Society on Early Intervention, which took place in Stockholm, Sweden, June 8 - 10, 2016.

Dr. Blasco has been working in early childhood development for more than three decades, contributing to the breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding in the field of Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education (EI/ECSE).

Her current research is designed to explore “executive function (EF) in infants and toddlers born low birth weight (LBW) and preterm. This study examines whether traditional infant and toddler assessment methods that have components of EF in their structure can discern early indicators of executive functioning in three subgroups of children ages six months to three years,” according to the project's website. 

Click here to read more about Dr. Blasco's research.

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TRI's Bonnie Morihara and Child Development Center Alum Win Gold in Oregon Special Olympics

Posted on July 13, 2016

Bonnie and Holly standing side by side, Holly has her arm around Bonnie's shoulder. They are each wearing their gold medals

On July 9 and 10, 2016 more than 1,600 softball, track & field, golf, and bocce athletes converged on Newberg for the Special Olympics Oregon (SOOR) state games.

TRI’s Bonnie Morihara and her neighbor Holly have been competing as Unified Partners (an intellectually or physically challenged athlete plus a friend or relative) in bocce for three years now. This year they placed first, winning Gold medals, in their 4-team division in both the regional bocce competition in Eugene and the statewide competition in Newberg. Bonnie says that Holly is particularly good at bocce because she also competes in Special Olympics bowling in the fall.

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Preparing Early Childhood Educators for Inclusion

Posted on July 11, 2016

By Carol Dennis

Making early childhood education effective for every child, one new educator at a time

PEPI Logo: PEPI in block letters above the words Preparing Early Childhood Professionals for Inclusion

They sat around a long row of tables, representing faculty from six Oregon community colleges and staff from TRI. They were gathering for the last official time as a group of educators focused on the same mission - infusing into the Early Childhood Education (ECE) curriculum at their institutions the strategies needed to serve all of Oregon’s children, including those with diverse abilities.

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Welcoming New Staff to TRI

Posted on July 11, 2016

Carey Gilbert

Annie FriedmanPlease join us in welcoming Carey Gilbert and Annie Friedman

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TRI's Tom Udell Honored by the Oregon Early Learning Council

Posted on July 6, 2016

Lynne Angland Award Recipients Include TRI's Tom Udell

Tom Udell

The Early Learning Council, overseeing body for the Early Learning Division, has selected two recipients for the Lynne Angland Award. The award recognizes people and organizations who improve safety, quality, affordability and access to child care in Oregon at both the state and local levels.

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Accessing the Dream - Preparing Deaf-Blind Youth for a Self-Determined Life

Posted on June 8, 2016

Blue background with DREAM spelled out in finger spelling, letters, and braille

Young adults who are deaf–blind experience significant challenges when transitioning from school to community living, employment, college, and career. The newest product from the National Center on Deaf-Blindness, Accessing the Dream: Preparing Deaf-Blind Youth for a Self-Determined Life, is a multi-media presentation capturing the purpose and energy of the annual Transition Institute.

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Doris Cancel-Tirado Named Abby's House Woman of the Year

Posted on June 4, 2016

A line drawing of a house resting on hands with a purple heart-shape in the center. Along the top are the words

Each year at the end of spring term, Abby’s House honors a faculty or staff woman in the WOU community who exemplifies its mission. Specifically, a woman whose work has contributed to equity and non-violence.

The Woman of the Year 2016, Dr. Doris Cancel-Tirado, is an associate professor in the Division of Health and Exercise Science.

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The Intersection of Oregon's QRIS and the Oregon Association of ESDs

Posted on May 23, 2016

Gary Glasenapp

TRI's Gary Glasenapp presented information about Oregon's QRIS at the OAESD Spring Conference. Oregon's Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) is a program that raises the quality and consistency of child care and early learning programs across the state.

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TRI Hosts After-School Programs from Around Oregon

Posted on May 2, 2016

21st CCLC Spring Conference 2016: Every Student Thriving

21st CCLC Logo - a green shape of Oregon on the background, a blue circle with a red human shape in the middle that looks to be flying. In the circle are the words The Research Institute (TRI), in partnership with the Oregon Department of Education (ODE), hosted the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) 2016 Spring Conference on May 5th and 6th. Representatives from 22 school districts across Oregon attended this bi-annual conference, engaging in a variety of professional development activities. Download conference materials.

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TRI's Robyn Lopez Melton Part of State and National Conversations about Early Childhood Education

Posted on April 22, 2016

Robyn Lopez Melton

For the past two years, TRI's Robyn Lopez Melton has been making her mark in the field of Early Childhood Education on a local, state, and national level. Through her position at TRI, she serves as the Co-Director of Oregon's Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS), working closely with the Oregon Department of Education, and sharing Oregon's QRIS experiences at early childhood education conferences across the country.

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STEM Adventure at the TRI-CDC Summer Camp

Posted on April 12, 2016

Outside - a man stands behind a small table showing children preserved food in jars. There is a teach standing behind the children

This year, activities at the TRI-CDC Summer Camp will focus on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics

This camp is open to all families on and off the WOU campus.

  • Camp begins June 20, 2016
  • For children 30 months to 8 years!
  • Located on the WOU Campus in historic Todd Hall
  • Monday- Friday 7:30am-5:30pm

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Executive Function and Social Emotional Development: Understanding the Relationship

Posted on April 11, 2016

Serra Acar, Ph.D.

Patricia Plasco, Ph.D.

TRI's Serra Acar, and Patricia Blasco, joined Oregon Department of Education's Mandy Stanley in a presentation titled:

Executive Function and Social Emotional Development: Understanding the Relationship. 

This session provided families and early childhood professionals with activities and strategies that support components of Executive Function (EF) that relate to Social and Emotional development for children, birth to three, with diverse abilities.

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TRI Challenge to Walk Across America Welcomes All Ability Levels

Posted on March 22, 2016

Walk Across America group page on the TRI website - the WAM logo with text that reads

By Carol Dennis

When many of us hear the invitation to “Walk Across America,” we assume it’s for someone else. We envision a person all sinew and muscle, wearing shorts and a tank-top, glistening in the sun. We don’t see a person who might be in decent shape, but certainly not running marathons or biking 20 miles a day. The entire concept feels fun, but very much out of reach to most of us.

That particular challenge is so far beyond the capabilities of most of us, that it would be folly, and maybe even dangerous, to attempt it.

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Western's Sexual Assault Prevention Featured in the Statesman Journal

Posted on March 16, 2016

Abby's House logo

The March 7, 2016 issue of the Statesman Journal featured the work of WOU’s Abby’s House in the prevention of sexual assault on campus.

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TRI's Child Development Center Focuses on Giving

Posted on March 16, 2016

Children and adults stand at the curb waiting for the truck.

Every year, for the entire month of February, public employees across the state of Oregon participate in the Governor’s Food Drive. The children attending the TRI-Child Development Center get right into the swing of things, collecting food, and helping fill the truck to help WOU meet its goals.

This annual event has become an important moment in the TRI-CDC that the children and the staff look forward to. The photos below show you why!

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Beta Stage of Electronic Portfolio System for Interveners

Posted on March 14, 2016


The National Center on Deaf-Blindness is currently in the beta stage of producing a fully featured electronic portfolio system for interveners. The goal is to establish a strong national foundation for intervener training and workplace support.

The role of the intervener is to connect a child who is deaf-blind to the world around them. In this one-on-one relationship, the intervener gives that child access to information about their surroundings, facilitates communication, and promotes social and emotional development.

Click here to learn more about interveners and the ePortfolio.

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TRI Presents at 18th National Symposium on Teacher Induction

Posted on February 29, 2016

Symposium on Teacher Induction banner

The Research Institute's Mary Ellen Dello Stritto, Ph.D. and Christina Reagle, Ed.D., joined by Tanya Frisendahl, Education Specialist, Oregon Department of Education, presented at the 18th National Symposium on Teacher Induction. The 2016 symposium took place on February 21-23, in Seattle, Washington.

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TRI's Serra Acar Collaborates with Early Childhood Researcher from Around the World

Posted on February 29, 2016

Serra Acar, Ph.D.

TRI's Serra Acar, Ph.D., has collaborated with researchers from around the world to write a paper on kindergarten readiness with a cross-cultural perspective.

This collaborate initiative has been published in Young Exceptional Children’s March 2016 issue. Young Exceptional Children is a peer-reviewed journal in the field of early intervention/early childhood special education. The paper is entitled “Three Mistakes Made Worldwide in 'Getting Children Ready' for School”.

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WOU Hits the Capitol on University Day

Posted on February 29, 2016

About 200 people sitting on a wide staircase

Hundreds of university students, faculty, and staff from universities across Oregon gathered at the state capitol to meet with their legislators.

They were there to talk about the important contributions made to the state through these institutions of high education.

TRI was proud to be part of the Western Oregon University contingent, and to represent WOU at our table just off the capitol rotunda.

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TRI Staff present at the Conference on Research Innovations in Early Intervention (CRIEI) 2016

Posted on February 22, 2016

TRI LogoTRI's Serra Acar, Ph.D., Patricia Blasco, Ph.D., and Sybille Guy, Ph.D., presented at the Conference on Research Innovations in Early Intervention (CRIEI) 2016. They participated in three sessions during the two-day conference located in San Diego, California, February 11-13, 2016.

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Life Experiences Inspire Crucial Research into Health Disparities for Latino Children

Posted on January 29, 2016

By Carol Dennis

Doris Cancel-Tirado, Ph.D.This research project goes to the core of Dr. Cancel-Tirado’s passion, allowing her to explore the impact that family and community circumstances have on the health of rural Latino children. It will also allow her to explore Latina mothers’ perceived opportunities and barriers to providing their children the best foundation for healthy development and productive lives.

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Oregon's QRIS is Subject of National Webinar

Posted on January 27, 2016

The BUILD Initiative and the QRIS National Learning Network presented a webinar through their "Let's Talk" series: A Multi-Level CQI Approach: Using QRIS Participation Data to Inform System and Program Improvements

Featuring Oregon's QRIS

Oregon's QRIS 5-Star Medalion

Oregon’s QRIS is a relatively new system that has embraced continuous quality improvement (CQI) throughout a multi-level approach: at the system level with the development and implementation team, at the TA model level with the Quality Improvement Specialists (QIS), and at the program level with participating Early Learning Development Programs whose improvement directly affects our children.

It took place on Wednesday, Jan 27, 2016, and was the highest sign up for a Let’s Talk yet!

Click here to see the recorded webinar.  Simply enter your name and click "Submit."

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Healthy Masculinity Campus Athletics Project at WOU

Posted on January 27, 2016

By Carol Dennis

WOU Wolves logo

It was a cold January morning in Monmouth, Oregon. The Columbia Room on the ground floor of the university center was filled with coaches representing all the athletic departments at Western Oregon University. About 30 people sitting behind tables set up in a circle, so an interactive conversation could take place.

The topic is not a typical one in the world of athletics. How often are these men and women asked to explore the meaning of masculinity – and to discuss what “health masculinity” might look like?

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TRI's Blasco, Acar, and Enright Published in the Journal of Intellectual Disabilities

Posted on January 21, 2016

The cover of Journal of Intellectual Disability

TRI is proud to announce the publication of the article Re-conceptualizing developmental areas of assessment for screening, eligibility determination and program planning in early intervention in the Journal of Intellectual Disabilities. This is a special issue on Early Intervention.

This article, written by TRI's Serra Acar, Ph.D., and Patricia Blasco, Ph.D., and Hunter College's Bonnie Keilty, Ed.D., with graphic contributions from TRI's Eric Enright, calls for the examination of early childhood constructs that impact a child’s ability to learn and develop, such as executive function (EF), mastery motivation, self-regulation and self-determination, specifically in the infant-toddler period.

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TRI's Serra Acar Elected to the Division for Early Childhood Executive Board

Posted on January 20, 2016

Serra Acar, Ph.D.

TRI's Serra Acar, Ph.D. has been elected by her peers to serve as Member-at-Large on the Division for Early Childhood Executive Board.

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TRI Contributes to the Success of WOU Students

Posted on January 20, 2016

Western Oregon University entrance sign

Western Oregon University prides itself on successfully recruiting students from non-traditional backgrounds – first in the family to go to college, non-native speakers, students from underrepresented communities, students with young children, veterans, students with disabilities, and older students on a second career path.

And once these students arrive at WOU to begin their college experience, there are supports in place to help them, and all WOU students, be successful in their studies.

TRI is very proud to play a part in that support.

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TRI's Research on Executive Function in Babies Born Low Birth Weight Gains International Attention

Posted on January 19, 2016

By Carol Dennis

Child playing in a tub of balls

At the Zero to Three Conference in Seattle this past December, TRI's Patricia Blasco, Serra Acar, and Sybille Guy were delighted to see over 250 participants at their presentation, enthusiastically engaged with the speakers throughout, asking good questions and providing new ideas.

When the research project is your own, it's often hard to know how excited and engaged others will be. The participation at the Zero to Three conference took away any doubt that this work will be seen as making an important contribution in the field of early childhood development.

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TRI Staff Present at Oregon Head Start Association/Parent Leadership Conference

Posted on January 15, 2016

Patricia BlascoAmber Ryerson

Serra AcarTRI's Patricia Blasco, Amber Ryerson, and Serra Acar presented at this year's Oregon Head Start Association/Parent Leadership Conference. This conference brings together parents from around the state to provide training on a variety of topics. Topics include information to serve on boards including parliamentary procedure, advocating on behalf of children, financial literacy, health, and safety.

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TRI's Amy Parker Helps TASH Celebrate 40 Years of Progressive Leadership

Posted on December 29, 2015

Amy Parker

TRI's Amy Parker participated in two presentation at this year's TASH Conference, "An Online Community to Support Individuals with Complex Communication Needs" and "Open Hands, Open Access: Online Training for Educators of Individuals with Deafblindness."

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TRI Presents at International Conference on Executive Function in Babies Born Low Birth Weight

Posted on December 18, 2015

Zero to Three - National Center for Infants, Toddlers and Families presented the 30th Annual National Training Institute

Zero to Three poster

TRI staff presented at the 30th Annual National Training Institute Zero to Three Conference in Seattle, Washington.

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TRI Hosts Afterschool Programs from Across the State

Posted on December 3, 2015

Introduction by speaker at conference

The Research Institute (TRI), in partnership with the Oregon Department of Education (ODE), hosted the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) 2015 Fall Conference on November 19th and 20th. Over 230 individuals involved in offering quality afterschool care programs participated in the two-day conference at the Western Oregon University campus. Included in this number are program directors, site coordinators, and direct staff from the 97 21st CCLC sites across Oregon

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Education Evaluation Center Helps Improve Retention of Students with Learning & Behavioral Challenges

Posted on December 2, 2015

Between 2010 and Summer 2015, the Education Evaluation Center (EEC) identified 42 Western Oregon University (WOU) students as having a disability. Many of those students were identified as having more than one disability/disorder. All were recommended to receive accommodations through the Western Oregon University Office of Disability Services.

This document explores the EEC's diagnoses, suggested accommodations, and impact.

View the report: Education Evaluation Center Diagnoses, Accommodations, & Impact

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A Successful Parnership to Meet the Needs of Culturally Diverse Students

Posted on November 14, 2015

High Five logo - a hand with Culture, Collaboration, Commitment, Communication, and Community written on the fingers

The Research Institute and College of Education at Western Oregon University just completed a successful partnership with Central School District to advance the ability of pre-service and in-service teachers to meet the needs of culturally and/or linguistically diverse students. 

According to the Oregon Department of Education (ODE), in 2014-2015 Oregon’s students of color made up 36.4% of the K-12 population but only 8.5% of Oregon’s teacher workforce was non-white. Finding ways to assist beginning and seasoned educators to be more responsive to the students’ cultural experiences is essential to creating successful learning opportunities for all students.

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Meeting Every Student's Needs - After School Programs Making a Difference

Posted on November 3, 2015

November 19th and 20th

The Research Institute (TRI), in partnership with the Oregon Department of Education (ODE), is proud to host the 21st Century Community Learning Centers 2015 Fall Conference at Western Oregon University on November 19th and 20th.

Heidi Sipe

Heidi Sipe, the keynote speaker at the 21st CCLC Fall Conference, will be honored as the 2016 Oregon Superintendent of the Year at the 2015 Oregon School Boards Association Convention this Saturday; at the 2016 OASE Winter Conference in Lincoln City in January; at the 2016 AASA National Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, in February; and at the 2016 COSA Annual Conference in Seaside in June.

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Blazing New Trails in Transition

Posted on November 3, 2015

TRI Presents at Division on Career Development and Transition International Conference

a Division of the Council of Exceptional Children

DCDT Conference Poster

"Post-school outcomes tell a story uniquely applicable to diverse audiences."

So writes TRI's Pattie Johnson in the description of her presentation for the Division on Career Development and Transition International Conference which took place November 5-7 in Portland, Oregon.

Transition experts from across the world gathered for this conference which provides opportunities to share research and field based expertise in transition assessment, family partnership, post-secondary education, employment, self-determination and much more!

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TRI Adds Center for Health and Human Services

Posted on November 2, 2015

CHHS LogoAt the beginning of this academic year, The Research Institute (TRI) at Western Oregon University entered a new phase of growth and development. Along with its new name (formerly The Teaching Research Institute), came a new Center. To acknowledge the broad scope of work being done at TRI, the Center for Health and Human Services has been created.

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NCDB Director Linda McDowell Offers Thoughts Post Summit

Posted on October 19, 2015

The National Deaf-Blind TA Network held their annual Summit in Salt Lake City in July. In this blog post, NCDB Director Linda McDowell offers her reflections on the event and offers ideas for increasing our collaborations as we move forward.   

Read the entire post here.

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Teaching Research Institute becomes “The Research Institute at Western Oregon University”

Posted on October 1, 2015

Expanding support for innovative research at Western and beyond

Western Oregon University sign

As Western Oregon University (WOU) enters its first year governed by an independent Board of Trustees and a new university president, TRI has been called upon to help expand the university’s national standing in research and innovation.

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TRI's Pattie Johnson Presents at COSA Special Ed Conference

Posted on September 30, 2015

Pattie JohnsonPattie Johnson, Director of TRI's Technology and Information Management Services (TIMS) presented at the 2015 Special Education Conference: Building Collaborative Frameworks for All. This two-day conference, hosted by the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators (COSA) and the Oregon Department of Education (ODE), took place on October 1st and 2nd at the Eugene Hilton Hotel, in downtown Eugene, Oregon.

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Western Oregon University Assistant Professor Receives $100,000 Grant from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Posted on September 28, 2015

Doris I. Cancel-Tirado

Grant will support Doris I. Cancel-Tirado, PhD, MPH, MA in studying factors that may influence the mental and physical well-being of rural Latino children.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), the nation’s leading philanthropy on health and health care, has awarded Western Oregon University Doris I. Cancel-Tirado, PhD, MPH, MA Assistant Professor a 24-month grant through the New Connections program. Cancel-Tirado is among a select group of Junior Investigators to receive a New Connections grant.

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TRI Gives Student Workers Real Work Experience

Posted on September 22, 2015

Editor's Note: This article was originally published May 18, 2015. TRI extends a warm welcome to all new and returning Western Oregon University students!

By Taylor Leech

Taylor, Shelby, and Amy

I have been employed as a student worker with TRI at Western Oregon University for the past six months. My job here has given me the chance to write some of the blog posts for the website. Recently, I was asked to write something about what it's like to be a student worker here, and to ask some of the other TRI student workers about their experience.

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What Do Cookies Have to Do with Safe Teen Drivers?

Posted on September 16, 2015

TSE Logo

It was a Saturday morning in mid-September and the usually quiet weekend at The Research Institute at Western Oregon University drew a dozen people from across the state, all on the same mission.

These Trainers of Trainers (TOTs) were gathering to continue laying the groundwork that turns new drivers into safe drivers, through the Traffic Safety Education (TSE) program.

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Early Childhood Mental Health Conference Addresses Effects of Childhood Trauma

Posted on September 13, 2015

Amber Ryerson

Speak to a woman in a substance use treatment program, or in the public mental health system, and you will most likely find she had experienced trauma as a child. This is just one example of the results of studies clearly showing that trauma, such as physical abuse and neglect, experienced in childhood has lasting, often devastating effects throughout the lifespan of the survivor.

On September 17th and 18th, TRI's Amber Ryerson was among nationally and internationally recognized speakers at the 6th Annual We Can't Wait Conference in San Diego. This conference was filled with presentations on evidence-based practices for prevention, screening, assessment, and treatment of children and families with trauma.

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2015 Center on Early Learning Fall Conference

Posted on September 11, 2015

Fall Conference September 9 - 10

The 2015 Center on Early Learning Fall Conference took place on the campus of Western Oregon University on September 9th and 10th. These two days of targeted trainings and workshops addressed the professional development needs of staff who work in Oregon’s Early Learning System.

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TRI Recruiting Babies for Study of Executive Function

Posted on September 2, 2015

TRI logo

The Research Institute at Western Oregon University, in partnership with the Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), is in the process of recruiting babies, age 6-8 months, born low birth weight and those born full term. These babies and their families will participate in a study on Executive Function in infants and toddlers born Low Birth Weight (LBW). Here's the recruitment information.

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WOU Conducts Research to Improve the Lives of Latino Adolescents

Posted on August 28, 2015

Stephanie Hoover receiving award from President Rodney Goodyear, Ph.D. Department of Educational Psychology

Dr. Stephanie Hoover, Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences at Western Oregon University, has been awarded the Charles J. Gelso, Ph.D. Psychotherapy Grant from the Society for the Advancement of Psychotherapy to continue her research into culturally accommodated therapy for Latino adolescents.

“Culturally accommodated treatment is psychotherapy that pays attention to culture,” Dr. Hoover says. “It’s about delivering mental health services that make sense and are effective with diverse communities.”

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Let’s Talk: Early Childhood Inclusion in Oregon

Posted on August 21, 2015

Child blowing bubblesFor the second year in a row, The Research Institute at Western Oregon University was proud to partner with the College of Education to host the Early Childhood Inclusion Summer Institute, August 12 - 14. This three-day event brings together families, preservice and practicing teachers, as well as service providers from around the state to join in the conversation - Let’s Talk: Early Childhood Inclusion in Oregon.


"Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much."
                                                                                       ~Helen Keller~

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TRI Welcomes Two (and a Half) New Members to the Center on Early Learning Team

Posted on July 31, 2015

Lauren Peterson with her daughtersTRI welcomes Cheri Freedman and Lauren Peterson to the Center on Early Learning. Both bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to TRI. Each brings a unique and valuable view of Early Childhood development. And one brings a brand new baby boy!Cheri and Paxton

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