Cathy Pratt (IN UCEDD) Named 2011 Shibles Professor at University of Maine (UCEDD)

April 6, 2011

Cathy Pratt, Autism Society board member and Director of the Indiana Resource Center for Autism at Indiana University's Indiana Institute on Disability and Community, has been named the Shibles Distinguished Visiting Professor in the College of Education and Human Development at the University of Maine for the spring and fall semesters of 2011.

The Shibles Distinguished Visiting Professorship is named for Mark R. Shibles, who served as dean of the UM College of Education from 1947-71. Recipients of the annual appointment are recognized experts in various fields of education and serve as consultants to the college in its statewide work to provide professional teaching and leadership training, applicable research and direct services to Maine schools and communities.

The Shibles professors bring intellectual and professional stimulation to students and faculty, and provide a national perspective and expertise pertinent to improvement of the college's professional programs, as well as to its response to state educational issues and needs. They have contributed to the college's efforts in areas such as aspirations, educational leadership, human intelligence and motivation, and the implication of school restructuring for teacher preparation and professional development.

Dr. Pratt currently serves on numerous advisory boards and most recently has become a board-certified behavior analyst (BCBA-D). She is past board chair of the Autism Society and has been honored by the Autism Society of America with the Individual Achievement Award, the 2005 Princeton Fellowship Award, and with various awards through NYFAC (New York Families for Autistic Children, Inc.), including recognition from the U.S. House of Representatives.

In 2008, Dr. Pratt was awarded the Distinguished Service Award by the Indiana Council of Administrators of Special Education. She has written articles and presents on topics including autism spectrum disorders, functional behavior assessment/positive behavior supports, instructional approaches, systems change, and policy. Prior to pursuing her doctorate at Indiana University, Dr. Pratt worked as a classroom teacher for students across the autism spectrum and with other disabilities.

Mark R. Shibles Jr., former dean of the School of Education and current professor of education at the University of Connecticut, was the first recipient of the professorship established in memory of his father in 1985. Former Shibles professors include the late Theodore R. Sizer, founder and director of the Coalition of Essential Schools; Linda Darling-Hammond, professor of education at Stanford University and executive director of the National Commission on Teaching and America's Future; and James P. Comer, Maurice Falk Professor of Child Psychiatry at the Yale University Child Study Center.


About the College of Education and Human Development, University of Maine: The College of Education and Human Development prepares teachers and other specialists to apply research-based knowledge and field-tested experience to address the changing needs of schools, children and families.

About the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community and Indiana Resource Center for Autism: The Indiana Institute on Disability and Community is a research, education and service center affiliated with Indiana University Bloomington. Its mission is to work with communities to welcome, value and support the meaningful participation of people of all ages and abilities through research, education and service. The Indiana Resource Center for Autism conducts training and consultations, engages in research, and disseminates information to build community capacity to support children and adults on the autism spectrum.

The Indiana Institute on Disability and Community receives support from the Office of the Vice Provost for Research at Indiana University Bloomington (OVPR). OVPR is dedicated to supporting ongoing faculty research and creative activity, developing new multidisciplinary initiatives, and maximizing the potential of faculty to accomplish pathbreaking work.


Adapted from an Indiana University press release.