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Introduction to Contemporary Special Education New Horizons

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  • Edition: 2nd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2018-03-01
  • Publisher: Pearson
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Supplemental Materials

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An interactive, straightforward approach to special education from the directors of the IRIS Center

Introduction to Contemporary Special Education: New Horizons presents an introduction to the professional practices, trends, and research that define contemporary special education while also conveying the diversity and excitement of this changing field.


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Author Biography

Deb Smith was the recipient of the 2015 Pearson/International Council for Exceptional Children’s Teacher Education Division (TED) 2015 Excellence in Teacher Education Award. She has also received distinguished alumni awards from two of her alma maters: Pitzer College and the College of Education at the University of Washington. She, with Naomi Tyler, co-directs the IRIS Center and is also Professor, School of Educational Studies at Claremont Graduate University. The IRIS Center is funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP); Project Number H325E120002). The IRIS Center (www.iris.peabody.vanderbilt.edu or www.iriscenter.com) is charged with providing the nation’s college faculty, professional development providers, and independent learners with interactive modules and other training materials about evidence-based practices that improve results of all children and youth who struggle to learn, particularly those with disabilities.


In addition to 14 major textbooks, including Contemporary Special Education: New Horizons’ first edition; seven editions of Introduction to Special Education: Making a Difference, which was translated into Spanish, Polish, Portuguese, and Mandarin Chinese; and Teaching Students with Special Needs in Inclusive Classrooms; she authored multiple editions of two other texts. She also has written over 31 chapters and book supplements, 60 refereed articles and reports, as well as many instructional materials for children. Much of her research has focused on the supply and demand of special education faculty. Since 1984, Deb has served on the Board of Trustees for Pitzer College and Claremont Colleges, and was recognized as a Life Trustee in 2003.


Naomi Tyler is an Associate Professor of the Practice in Special Education at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, consistently ranked as one of the top two special education programs in the country. Naomi teaches the Introduction to Exceptionality course and much of her work on this text is based on her own classroom teaching and on feedback from her students. She has devoted her career to improving the education of students with disabilities. In her role as co-director of the IRIS Center, she insures that instructional resources used in teacher education incorporate evidence-based practices via the translation of research to practice. IRIS Center resources are used worldwide, as evidenced by use in 226 of the 230 countries monitored by Google Analytics. Since 2013, educators worldwide have visited the IRIS Website over 5 million times, accessing the instructional resources posted there. In 2015, over 84% of all colleges and universities in the U.S. with approved special education teacher preparation programs used IRIS resources in their personnel development efforts.


She is the co-author of the 7th edition of Introduction to Special Education: Teaching in an Age of Opportunity and the co-author of the first edition of Introduction to Contemporary Special Education: New Horizons. She brings her skills, experience, and expertise in technology applications to this new edition of New Horizons, making it an engaging and interactive experience for students. Prior to working in higher education, she spent 10 years as a special education teacher working with students from diverse racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds, in both rural and urban settings.


Kim Skow is the program coordinator and a lead content developer for the IRIS Center at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. Since 2004, Kim translated research to practice through her lead role in creating, developing, and producing dozens instructional modules, the Center’s signature resources. Because of her keen talent to provide clear and concise presentation of information, she has made often difficult to understand content comprehensible, engaging, and accessible to college students who possess a wide range of abilities and interests.  She has brought those talents and skills to New Horizons 2e across a wide range of topics about instructional and behavioral issues related to struggling learners and students with disabilities.


Previously, she worked on federally funded projects that investigated children’s social development and adjustment and those life experiences that increase the risk of developing of conduct problems and antisocial behavior. Kim uses her practical experience of implementing academic interventions to help make examples found in this text real and proper models for others to follow when they are applying knowledge into skills in classroom settings.

Table of Contents

 1: Thinking About Exceptionalities
 2: Supporting All Learners
 3: Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
 4: Basic Guarantees, Individualized Programs, and Special Services
 5: Speech and Language Impairments
 6: Learning Disabilities
 7: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
 8: Autism Spectrum Disorder
 9: Intellectual Disability
 10: Emotional and Behavioral Disorders
 11: Physical and Health Disabilities
 12: Deafness and Hard of Hearing
 13: Visual Disabilities: Low Vision and Blindness
 14: Other Low Incidence Disabilities
 15: Gifted and Talented
 Appendix: CEC Initial Level Special Educator Preparation Standards
 Video and Interactive Resources

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