Do You See a Difference? Evaluating Outcomes of a Parent-Implemented Intervention

Hedda Meadan-Kaplansky, Julia B. Stoner, Maureen E. Angell, Marcus E. Daczewitz, Jehanzeb Cheema, John K. Rugutt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Parent-Implemented Communication Strategies (PiCS) project resulted in the development of an intervention package aimed at enhancing the social communication skills of young children with disabilities and limited expressive language. While the outcomes of the PiCS project seem to be positive, a thorough and comprehensive assessment of social validity was warranted. Wolf (Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 11, 203-214, 1978) contended that interventions should be assessed not only for effectiveness but also for social validity. This study of social validity addressed the question, "Was the PiCS project socially valid from an expert perspective?" Our expert evaluators were recruited from three groups: (a) parents of young children with disabilities, (b) early childhood special education teachers, and (c) speech language pathologists who worked with young children with disabilities. Each evaluator viewed video clips of parent-child interactions from pre- and post-intervention sessions, in random order, and completed a questionnaire about parent and child behaviors. The overall findings provided support for the social validity of the PiCS project. Further discussion that examines differences in the ratings of the groups of evaluators and implications for research and practice is provided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)415-430
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • Parent-implemented intervention
  • Social validity
  • Social-communication skills

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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