Mary-alayne Hughes' research interests include families of young children with disabilities and pre-service personnel preparation of individuals (future early interventionists and teachers) who will work with young children with disabilities and their families. Currently, she is the Principal Investigator on a federally-funded personnel preparation grant ("Preparing Culturally Responsive Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Personnel").

Research & Service

As clinical faculty, I do not have a research appointment. However, I am interested in research in the area of personnel preparation. I am currently qualitatively analyzing playgroup practicum data to examine the developmental progression of pre-service playgroup practicum students' competence and confidence in implementing a playgroup intervention approach. In addition, for purposes of monitoring the PREP I students' service obligation, I am coordinating follow-up surveys of funded students who have graduated. In collaboration with Dr. Sungyoon Lee, I have prepared an online follow-up survey regarding the PREP I training, and I anticipate piloting the survey in Summer 2013.


Principal InvestigatorPreparing Culturally Responsive Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Personnel (PCRP), U.S. Department of Education, 2014 - 2017

Principal InvestigatorPreparing Relationship-based Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Personnel (PREP), U.S. Department of Education, 2009 - 2016

Co-Principal InvestigatorPreparing Relationship-Based Early Intervention Personnel (PREP), U.S. Department of Education, 2004 - 2010

Co-Principal InvestigatorDeveloping a Community Impact Project to Enhance SPED 338: Families of Children with Special Needs, Community Based Learning Grant, 2004 - 2005

Senior PersonnelRelationships Project, Cross-Campus Initiative on Promoting Resiliency, 2004 - 2005

Co-Principal InvestigatorEnhancing Pre-Service Teachers' Resource Family Experience, The Kay Meginnis Endowment for the Enhancement of Special Education Programs, 2004 - 2004


Review Panel Member, U.S. Dept. of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, Focus Area A: EU.S. Dept. of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, 2014 - 2014

Illinois (IDEC) Sharing A Vision Conference, 2007 - 2014

Illinois (IDEC) Sharing A Vision Conference Planning Committee, 2007 - 2014

Illinois Sharing A Vision Conference (SAV) Evaluation, 2007 - 2014

Illinois Gateways to Opportunity Core Credential Committee, 2009 - 2012

Young Exceptional Children, 2011 - present

U.S. Department of Education, 2010 - 2011

Heartland Equity & Inclusion Project State Steering Committee, 2010 - present

Promotion & Tenure -- ReviewerUniversity of Memphis, 2010 - 2010

United Way Success by 6 Social-emotional Work Group, 2006 - 2010

B-3 Clearinghouse Advisory Board, 2009 - present

Illinois Division for Early Childhood, 2008 - 2009

Conference proposal reviewer for personnel preparation strand.DEC's International Conference on Young Children with Special Needs, 2008 - 2008

Conference Proposal Reviewr for 2 strands: personnel preparation and administrationCEC Division for Early Childhood (DEC) Conference, 2007 - 2007

Illinois Division for Early Childhood, 2006 - 2007

Illinois Division for Early Childhood, 2005 - 2006

Birth to Six Council of Families & Agencies (Champaign County LIC, 2005 - 2006

Chair, Intervention Strand Proposal ReviewsCEC Division for Early Childhood (DEC) Conference Proposal Reviews, 2005 - 2005

DEC's International Conference on Young Children with Special Needs, 2004 - 2004

Journal of Early Intervention, 2003 - present


Assessment in ECSE Practice in designing and applying assessment devices and procedures and in using them to make educational decisions for children with special needs, birth through kindergarten age. Course Information: 3 undergraduate hours. No graduate credit. Prerequisite: Credit or concurrent registration in SPED 524 or consent of instructor.

Introduction to ECSE Overview of the history, trends, and issues of the field of Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) with particular attention to federal and state policy, service system models, and professional roles and ethics. Emphasis is on current research, theory, and practice. Course Information: 2 undergraduate hours. 2 graduate hours. Prerequisite: Junior standing.

Supervised Prac in SPED Supervised practice in one or more settings in which students with mild to severe disabilities are served; practicum settings may include day, residential, special, and regular schools which serve students with disabilities. Course Information: Additional fees may apply. See Class Schedule. Approved for S/U grading only. May be repeated in same or subsequent terms to a maximum of 8 hours. Prerequisite: Admission to the graduate program in special education; consent of supervising faculty member. Class Schedule Information: Student teaching fee required. A per hour fee will be charged. The fee is determined by the yearly total rate approved by the Board of Trustees.

Individual Differences: B to 6 Examines major developmental themes in young children from birth to six. Emphasizes individual differences resulting from environmental and biological factors that influence development, including those resulting from disabilities. Focuses on integration among multiple domains of development. Course Information: Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

Mary-alayne Hughes

Clinical Professor, Special Education



260F Education Building
1310 S. Sixth St.
Champaign, IL 61820

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