Distinguished Professor's Lecture to Address Self-determination for People with Disabilities

Research shows promoting autonomy leads to valued life outcomes, but for people with disabilities, barriers to supporting self-determination persist. Karrie Shogren, the Ross and Marianna Beach Distinguished Professor of Special Education in the KU School of Education & Human Sciences, has dedicated the past two decades of her career to exploring this topic.

"Karrie Shogren"

Shogren will present her inaugural distinguished professor lecture, “Advancing Self-Determination: Building Systems of Supports with the Disability Community,” at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 14 in the Kansas Room of the Kansas Union.

Individuals can register to attend the event, which will have a reception to follow at 6:30 p.m.

The lecture will cover research that establishes definitional frameworks, assessments and evidence-based interventions that encourage self-determination to enhance school and community outcomes. The research also highlights partnerships with the disability community and the importance of creating support systems that allow people with disabilities to make their own choices and set goals for themselves.

“It is a privilege to have this opportunity to elevate and share work that has been driven by the disability community to change systems and practices to advance self-determination,” Shogren said.

Shogren’s research, which she has presented locally, nationally and internationally, focuses on assessment and intervention in self-determination and supported decision-making for people with disabilities. Her work has helped shape the direction of services and support for people with disabilities in schools and communities, as well as influenced research, theory and practice in related fields.

Currently serving as the director of the KU Center on Developmental Disabilities (KUCDD), Shogren also is the associate director of the Beach Center on Disability and a senior scientist at the Schiefelbusch Life Span Institute. She is a co-editor of the peer-reviewed academic journal Remedial and Special Education, as well as a fellow of the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and American Psychological Association.

In addition, Shogren has contributed to several boards and committees related to advocacy and research with the disability community. She is an appointed member of the Standing Committee of Medical and Vocational Experts for the Social Security Administration’s Disability Programs under the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.

Shogren has led multiple grant-funded projects, one of which recently received $250,000 from the Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Awards program. The project focuses on expanding opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to engage in research that affects them.

Shogren has published more than 200 articles in peer-reviewed journals and authored or co-authored more than 20 books. She joined KU’s Department of Special Education as an associate professor in 2013, though she served as an adjunct professor and research associate with the Beach Center in prior years. Shogren was previously a faculty member at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of Texas at Austin.

She earned a doctorate in special education from KU, a master’s degree in psychology from the University of Dayton and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Ohio State University.

The first distinguished professorships were established at KU in 1958. A university distinguished professorship is awarded wholly based on merit, following exacting criteria. A complete list is available on the Distinguished Professor website.