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March 2003

News for the investigators, staff and associates of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies

Karen Henry, editor

The Life Span Institute at the University of Kansas

1052 Dole Human Development Center

1000 Sunnyside Avenue

Lawrence, KS 66045-7555 (785) 864-4295 TDD (785) 864-5051

LSI web site:

REMINDER: Annual employee evaluations are required and due this Friday, April 4.



KUCDD appoints Denise Lance to new Consumer Activities Post

Life Span in the news

Seminars of interest



Administration News & Announcements

Research, Design & Analysis Upcoming RDA Brownbags; LISREL Workshop; First RDA Summer Institute on Structural Equation Modeling

Project Development March update

KUCDD appoints Denise Lance to new Consumer Activities Coordinator post

Denise Lance, Ph.D., became the first Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities (KUCDD) Consumer Activities Coordinator effective January 5. KUCDD Director Michael Wehmeyer created the half-time position to make sure that the KUCDD is aware of and respond to the needs of Kansans with developmental and other disabilities and that they are systematically surveyed for this information.

Lance, a Beach Center research associate, brings to the position the perspective of a professional whose expertise includes assistive technology, self-determination, and transition and of a person with a disability.

Her responsibilities include coordinating and liaisoning with the KUCDD Consumer Advisory Panel and facilitating collaboration between local and state consumer organizations and the KUCDD. In short, according to Wehmeyer, she will ensure that KUCDD research addresses the needs of Kansans with disabilities, their families and those who work with them.

Life Span Institute in the News

LSI Parsons researchers create loan cooperative for Kansans with disabilities

Assistive technology such as motorized scooters or communication devices can be expensive, and the Kansans who need them may have high medical bills, live on fixed incomes or be unable to get conventional bank loans to purchase these unconventional items.

Neither Medicare nor Medicaid pays for major equipment purchases such as modified vehicles or computers that would allow Kansans with disabilities to live and work independently or simply communicate or move about.

But a consumer-controlled loan cooperative developed by University of Kansas disabilities researchers has changed that for at least 70 Kansans for the past two years.

The Kansas Assistive Technology Cooperative (KATCO) is a federal-state-private partnership that was the brainchild of KU associate scientist Sara Sack and senior scientist Charles Spellman. Sack and Spellman direct the Assistive Technology for Kansans Project (ATK) for the Life Span Institute.

Sack said that the ATK Project long had wanted to add an alternative financing program to the network of services the group has helped implement in Kansas over the past 10 years, authorized under the Assistive Technology Act of 1998.

When the U.S. Department of Education issued grants to develop state alternative financing programs, Sack and people with disabilities from across Kansas developed one of the first programs in the country.

“What we heard most often from Kansans with disabilities was the lack of available funding,” Sack said. “An individual could get a job if they had a van with a lift for their wheelchair to get to the office, but they couldn't borrow money until they already had the job. It was a Catch-22.”

Rick Linnaberry, a Wichita machinist who designs aircraft parts, is one of these people.

“More people with disabilities could have productive lives with programs like KATCO,” Linnaberry said.

Linnaberry is typical of middle-income people who have credit problems after accidents or illness.

“I wasn't poor enough to qualify for some kinds of assistance, and not rich enough to afford the assistive technology I needed to go back to work,” he said.

Linnaberry applied for a KATCO loan to buy a $5,000 standing frame that allows him to work standing up. The frame lets him move around his workshop, strengthens his leg muscles and reduces the incidence of painful pressure ulcers common to people with paralysis.

Now Linnaberry works 50 to 60 hours a week at a full-time job and his own home business.

As it enters its third year of existence, KATCO has loaned more than $400,000 to 70 Kansans in 18 counties for vehicle and home modifications, computers and other technology.

A majority of KATCO’s board of directors and loan review committee are Kansans with disabilities. The State of Kansas provided the original funds to match the US Department of Education federal dollars that fund the program. The Parsons Credit Union, Mid America Credit Union in Wichita and Alliance Bank in Topeka have helped establish the nontraditional assistive technology cooperative.

In addition to making KATCO a reality, the ATK coordinates direct assistive technology services at five sites throughout Kansas. The group also has established an assistive technology equipment loan program to “Try Before You Buy” and a durable medical equipment reuse and recycle program.

More recently, the ATK Project joined with Kansas State University, Southeast Kansas Independent Living, Kansas Vocational Rehabilitation and others to form the Kansas AgrAbility Project to bring assistive technology and rehabilitation to the more than 350 Kansas farmers and farm workers who are injured in agriculture-related accidents each year.

KATCO is directed by E. Basil Kessler and is located at 625 Merchant St., Suite 210, Emporia, KS 66801; (866) 465-2826;

Campus Seminars of Interest

Reminder: You can access all the Institute and related seminars at:

Gerontology Center and Center on Aging present Chicago researchers on life-span extension claims April 3

Two eminent scholars who study longevity and decry the claims of life-span extension entrepreneurs will speak at the University of Kansas on "The Duration of Life: Warranty Periods and Anti-Aging Medicine." The free, public event will be at 4 p.m. Thursday, April 3, in 2092 Dole Human Development Center.

KU graduate Bruce A. Carnes, senior research scientist at the Center on Aging at the University of Chicago, and S. Jay Olshansky, professor of public health at the University of Illinois at Chicago, are leading figures in biogerontology. They explore why humans and animals die, why they die when they do and the potential for extending the life span.

Carnes and Olshanksy have successfully translated their research for the general public in such articles as "If Humans Were Built to Last" and "No Truth to the Fountain of Youth" in recent issues of Scientific American.

The event is sponsored the KU Gerontology Center and the Center on Aging at the KU Medical Center. The Gerontology Center is one of the 13 centers and more than 140 projects of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies at KU.


Dale Walker, Juniper Gardens investigator and Assistant Research Professor, presented findings from her longitudinal study of language development in daycare settings, Beacons of Excellence, at Children: Our Common Wealth V. She also discussed an assessment tool for measuring growth and development to monitor individual and group progress and evaluate program impact.

Kathryn Saunders, LSI Parsons investigator and Senior Scientist, participated in a Congressional briefing and forum on transitional work for The Federation of Behavioral, Psychological, & Cognitive Sciences in D.C. Her presentation was Bringing Reading Instruction for Individuals with Mental Retardation into the 21st Century.

Rud and Ann Turnbull, Beach Center Co-Directors, gave a combination of six lectures on quality of life and policy at the Institute for Integration, a federally chartered corporation based in the Department of Psychology and Special Education at the University of Salamanca in Spain.

Glen White, RTCIL Director, gave a presentation before Congressional staff members along with Dr. Henry Betts, of the Rehab Institute of Chicago, and Dr. Marcus Fuhrer, who is a consultant in the DC area. The presentation was about the research and training capabilities of RRTC’s, Rehabilitation Research and Training Centers, that are funded by NIDRR to conduct research and training to support the health and wellness of persons with long term disabilities.

Steve Fawcett, Work Group Director and Jerry Schultz, Associate Director, with Michelle McKinley KU Policy Research Institute presented Evaluating and Supporting Collaborative Partnerships for Community Health at the Third International Colloquium on the Prevention and Treatment of Addictive Behaviors in Mexico City.


RTCIL researchers Katherine Froehlich-Grobe and Kaveri Chaudhary have produced a guide to health care resources for low income and minority individuals the Kansas City metro area. The guide is available online at

Administration News

Research Design & Analysis

Todd Little, Director, Research Design & Analysis


On Wednesday, April 9th, Todd Little will conduct a brownbag presentation, On the Merits of Parceling Techniques and Their Many Uses in Multivariate Research, in Dole 1052. Space is limited so please contact Kandace Fleming ( to reserve a space.

LISREL Workshop

On Friday, May 9th, Gerhard Mels will conduct a workshop on using the LISREL software package’s recent user-friendly enhancements. The RDA is encouraging all SEM users to attend this workshop because these new enhancements coupled with the significant power of the LISREL program make it a leading software package for SEM users. Also note that the RDA unit supports the LISREL package.

Gerhard Mels is senior programmer at Scientific Software International, the publishers of the LISREL software package. At SSI, among other things, he is responsible for LISREL technical support, solving user’s queries on a daily basis. He has contributed to LISREL interface and program development as well as to its documentation. His Ph.D. is in statistics specializing in the analysis of correlation structures. He has taught numerous LISREL workshops and brings to this workshop an intimate knowledge of the LISREL program.

Space is limited so please contact Kandace Fleming at ( to reserve a space.

First Annual RDA Summer Institute on Structural Equation Modeling

The RDA unit will conduct a week long summer institute on Structural Equation Modeling. Todd Little will teach the basics of SEM up through longitudinal and multiple-group SEM. The RDA team will provide hands on practice with the SEM software package LISREL. The Institute is tentatively scheduled for Friday, August 4th to Tues. August 8th. The cost to attend the summer institute is $1200 with a limited number of 50 percent fee-waivers available with proof of graduate student or postdoctoral status. For more information and to reserve a spot go to:

Project Development

Paul Diedrich, Associate Director for Project Development

Past Submissions not previously reported

1. Jerzy Gryzmala-Busse and Frank Brown, collaborating with Rachel Freeman, Matt Reese and Jennifer Zarcone, submitted a new, four-year proposal “ITR: Data Mining Techniques Applied to Prediction of Self-Injurious Behavior” to NSF on February 12, 2003.

2. Janet Marquis submitted a new, one-year proposal “Evaluation, TA and Consultation Regarding HRSA: Alzheimer’s Demonstration Grant to States Program and Managed Care Initiatives” to the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee (subcontract from Rhonda Montgomery) on February 18, 2003.

3. Judy Carta, Jean Ann Summers and Jane Atwater submitted their third-year continuation “Early Head Start Research Partnership Project” to HHS/ACYF on March 1, 2003.

4. Charles Greenwood and Carmen Arreaga-Mayer submitted their fourth-year grant performance report “Post-Doctoral Leadership Training Program in Intervention Research for Culturally/Linguistically Diverse Students with Disabilities” to DE/OSERS/OSEP on March 7, 2003.

5. Jane Wegner, Diane Loeb, Sally Roberts and Carla Jackson submitted a new, one-year proposal “A Study of the Speech-Language Outcomes in Children with Cochlear Implants” to DE/OSERS/OSEP for their Student Initiated Research Projects competition on March 7, 2003.

6. Steve Mills submitted a new, four-month proposal “AUCD Childhood Disability Resource Guide” to the Association of University Centers on Disabilities on March 12, 2003.

7. Joseph Donnelly, Dennis Jacobsen, Richard Washburn and Debra Sullivan submitted a new, two-year proposal “Growth Hormone Use in Prader-Willi Syndrome and Obese Adults” to Genentech (prime contractor, Children’s Mercy Hospital) on March 12, 2003.

8. Charles Greenwood, Jay Buzhardt and Mary Abbott submitted a new, two-year proposal “Preparing for Scale: Refining and Testing a Scaling Blueprint for the Reading ClassWide Peer Tutoring Program” to DE/IES (Institute of Education Sciences) on March 14, 2003.

Three new DE/OSERS/OSEP Model Demonstration Projects for Children with Disabilities were submitted March 14, 2003:

9. Gwen Beegle, Donna Wickham and Amy McCart submitted a new, four-year proposal “Targeted Group Intervention Model: Comprehensive Professional Development for Teacher Enhancement and Student Success in Urban Schools”;

10. Steve Mills and Chris Smith submitted a new, four-year proposal “A Model for Enhancing Data Collection in Schools for Improved Educational Planning for Students with Developmental Disabilities Using PDAs and Internet” via the Southeast Kansas Education Service Center (prime contractor); and

11. Susan Palmer, Barbara Thompson, Eva Horn and David Lindeman submitted a new, four-year proposal “Spiral Preschool Access to the General Curriculum”.

12. Charles Greenwood, Dale Walker and Judith Carta, in collaboration with Hugh Catts, Debra Kamps, Todd Little, Mabel Rice, Barbara Terry and Steven Warren at the University of Kansas, Kevin Cole and Angela Notari-Syverson at the Washington Research Institute and Illene Schwartz and Susan Sandall at the University of Washington, submitted a new, five-year proposal “Language, Literacy and Behavior Curriculum Efficacy” to NICHD on March 26, 2003.

13. Eva Horn, Susan Palmer, Todd Little and Janet Marquis submitted a new, five-year proposal “Children’s School Success” to NICHD via Sam Odom at Indiana University (prime contractor) on March 26, 2003.

Three new DE/OSERS/OSEP Outreach Projects for Children with Disabilities were submitted March 28, 2003:

14. Judith Carta, Dale Walker and Charles Greenwood submitted a new, three year proposal “OPTIMA-IT: Outreach Project for Training in Identification and Monitoring Assessment for Infants and Toddlers”;

15. Susan Palmer and Jennifer Lattimore submitted a new, three-year proposal “The Self-Determined Learning Model: Self-Determination in Elementary Grades”; and

16. Michael Wehmeyer submitted a new, three-year proposal “Beyond High School: Replicating a Multistage Model Infusing Self-determination into 18-21 Services”.

17. Rathe Karrer resubmitted a two-year proposal “Preparatory Brain Processes in Down Syndrome Adults: A Magnetoencephalography (MEG) Study” to the Jerome Lejeune Foundation on March 31, 2003.

Upcoming Submissions

1. Sarah Ferguson will submit a new, one-year proposal “Talker Differences in Clear and Conversational Speech: Word Intelligibility for Listeners with Normal Hearing” to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation on April 1, 2003.

2. Debra Kamps, Charles Greenwood, Carmen Arreaga-Mayer, Mary Abbott and Cheryl Utley will submit their third-year grant performance report “Center for Early Intervention in Reading and Behavior to Improve the Performance of Young Children” to DE/OSERS/OSEP on April 4, 2004.

New Awards (not previously funded) Information

1. Steve Mills received a new, four-month award “AUCD Childhood Disability Resource Guide” from the Association of University Centers on Disabilities that began January 1, 2003.

2. Janet Marquis received a new, one-year award “Evaluation, TA and Consultation Regarding HRSA: Alzheimer’s Demonstration Grant to States Program and Managed Care Initiatives” from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee (subcontract from Rhonda Montgomery) which began January 15, 2003.

3. David Lindeman received a new, one-year award “Kansas State Improvement Grant – Early Childhood Supplement” from the Kansas State Department of Education which began February 1, 2003.

Comments and questions to:

The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university’s programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access,, 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY (for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas, medical center campuses).