Dr. Conroy has served since 2010 as the Co-Director of the Anita Zucker Center for Excellence in Early Childhood Studies to support its mission of promoting and supporting transdisciplinary research, teaching, model demonstration and outreach activities. Dr. Conroy is recognized for her research focused on developing, validating and evaluating interventions for young children with social and behavioral challenges.
Industry Expertise (2)
Areas of Expertise (7)
Early Intervention Evaluation and Assessment
Social and Behavioral Interventions
Early Childhood Education
Early Childhood Studies
Media Appearances (1)
Best in class: Better behavior for better learning
In fact, nearly 75% of teachers report challenging behavior had a moderate to severe impact on their ability to attend to the needs of other children. If those challenging behaviors are not addressed early, they can lead to negative outcomes years later. “They can be even more likely to end up dropping out of school,” said Maureen Conroy, PhD, Anita Zucker Endowed Professor at University of Florida.
Preliminary Study of the Effects of BEST in CLASS—Web on Young Children’s Social-Emotional and Behavioral OutcomesJournal of Early Intervention
Maureen A Conroy, Kevin S Sutherland, Kristen L Granger, Katerina M Marcoulides, Ke Huang, Alexandra Montesion
2021 Many young children entering early childhood programs demonstrate challenging behaviors that place them at risk for emotional/behavioral disorders (EBDs), which impact their future success in school. The purpose of this study was to conduct a conceptual replication of BEST in CLASS by examining child outcomes from BEST in CLASS—Web, a web-based professional development intervention supporting teachers’ use of effective practices for ameliorating young children’s challenging behaviors. Participants included 29 early childhood teachers and 54 children (ages 3–5 years old) who were identified at-risk for EBD. Positive outcomes were found for both BEST in CLASS—Web and BEST in CLASS in reductions of children’s problem behaviors and conflictual relationships with their teachers as well as increases in social skills, engagement, and closeness with teachers in comparison to children who did not receive the intervention.
Adapting an Evidence-Based Early Childhood Tier 2 Social-Emotional Learning Intervention for Web-Based DeliveryJournal of Educational Technology Systems
Kristen L Granger, Maureen A Conroy, Kevin S Sutherland, Edward G Feil, Jessica Wright, Alexandra Montesion, Ke Huang
2021 The purpose of this article is to describe the adaptation process of an evidence-based early childhood Tier-2 intervention program, BEST in CLASS-Prekindergarten, from a face-to-face format to a web-based delivery format called BEST in CLASS-Web. We describe the three-phase iterative development process used to adapt the parent program for delivery via the web. Activities in these phases included focus groups, interviews, an expert panel review, alpha and beta testing (Phase 1), feasibility testing (Phase 2), and a pilot promise study (Phase 3). Each phase included a series of refinements and improvements to materials based on data and stakeholder feedback. Lessons learned and implications for developing and implementing professional development services via online platforms are discussed.
A Preliminary Study of BEST in CLASS–Elementary on Teacher Self-Efficacy, Burnout, and AttributionsBehavioral Disorders
Shannon Nemer McCullough, Kristen L Granger, Kevin S Sutherland, Maureen A Conroy, Toshna Pandey
2021 Student problem behaviors in early elementary school have been associated with increased teacher burnout, negative emotions, and stress, along with negative student outcomes, including increased risk of emotional and behavioral disorders (EBDs). This study examined the impact of BEST in CLASS–Elementary (BEST in CLASS-E), a teacher-delivered Tier 2 intervention, on teacher self-efficacy, burnout, and attributions for student behavior. Participants in the study were 45 kindergarten to Grade 3 students, identified as at risk of EBD, and their 26 teachers from three elementary schools located in an urban school district. Although changes in teacher self-efficacy and burnout were nonsignificant, results suggest that teachers in the BEST in CLASS-E condition reported less emotional exhaustion than teachers in the control condition and that BEST in CLASS-E had a slight but nonsignificant effect (p = .06) on teachers’ causal attributions of problem behavior. This study highlights the promise of BEST in CLASS-E as a Tier-2 intervention delivered by teachers in impacting elementary teacher outcomes. Implications and limitations of the study are discussed.
Examining the Correspondence Between Teacher- and Observer-Report Treatment Integrity MeasuresSchool Mental Health
Bryce D McLeod, Kevin S Sutherland, Michael Broda, Kristen L Granger, Jennifer Cecilione, Clayton R Cook, Maureen A Conroy, Patricia A Snyder, Michael A Southam-Gerow
2021 Teacher-reported measures of treatment integrity (the extent to which prescribed practices are delivered as intended by teachers) have the potential to support efforts to evaluate and implement evidence-based interventions in early childhood settings. However, self-report treatment integrity measures have shown poor correspondence with observer-report treatment integrity measures, raising questions about score validity. This paper reports on the development and initial evaluation of the score reliability and validity of the Treatment Integrity Measure for Early Childhood Settings Teacher Report (TIMECS-TR), which is designed to address limitations of previous self-report treatment integrity measures that may have contributed to low correspondence with observer-rated measures. The TIMECS-TR includes 24 items designed to represent practices found in evidence-based interventions delivered in early childhood settings that target child social, emotional, and behavioral skills, rather than adherence to practices found in a specific evidence-based intervention.
Developing Treatment Integrity Measures for Teacher-Delivered Interventions: Progress, Recommendations and Future DirectionsSchool Mental Health
Kevin S Sutherland, Bryce D McLeod, Maureen A Conroy, Nicholas Mccormick
2021 While the measurement of treatment integrity is important to determine how much, and how well, interventions are delivered in schools, the science of treatment integrity is not well developed in education research. The purpose of this paper is to describe a program of research that has developed treatment integrity measures over the past 10 years to assess teacher delivery of an indicated program targeting reductions in problem behavior in early childhood and elementary school classrooms. Specifically, this paper will highlight the importance of active use of conceptual models to guide treatment integrity measure development, multidimensional assessment of treatment integrity and training procedures for observers, using several studies to illustrate the evolution and refinement of our measurement approach. Recommendations for researchers developing and evaluating interventions in schools are provided, as are recommendations to help the field move toward a more rigorous science of treatment integrity.