Dr. Richards on Special Education

    image of Dr. Susan DaviesDr. Stephen Richards is an associate professor in the Department of Teacher Education. Dr. Richards has published extensively in the field of special education, with a particular interest in the role of collaboration in the success of students and teacher in K-12 schools and higher education. Dr. Richards stated that “I have focused my scholarship on writing textbooks. I find that this type of scholarship improves my overall knowledge.” His most recent textbook, Collaborating with Professionals, Students, Families, and Communities, is co-authored with teacher education colleagues Drs. Katie Lawless Frank, Mary-Kate Sableski and Jackie Arnold.  

    Dr. Richards first developed the concept for this text as a response to a lack of suitable course textbooks on collaboration for early childhood and intervention specialist students. He and his co-authors have emphasized case studies and “real world” applications to better prepare teacher education candidates to work with students, families and other education professionals.  Dr. Richards’ focus on collaboration bridges his teaching and scholarly roles. For example, Drs. Richards and Lawless Frank have developed a collaborative relationship with a local Dayton charter school for teacher education seniors to apply both teaching and collaboration skills.  Richards and Lawless Frank have presented data from this collaboration at two national conferences in the past two years.  Dr. Lawless Frank has extended this work to include the Fitz Center for Community, Catholic Social Services, and Dayton Public Schools.  Drs. Richards and Lawless Frank hope to collaborate in the near future to develop other research projects stemming from the focus on collaboration.

    Dr. Richards stated that “This is an exciting time in my career and in the field of preparing Intervention Specialists. Collaborative scholarship is what I most enjoy because you learn so much from others in sharing ideas and strategies for helping pre and in-service candidates to be better teachers.  I love UD’s focus on working in community to shape the future.”

    Dr. Richards is a great example of how our professors combine their research and teaching interests to the benefit of our student and the communities we serve.