Dr. Emily Sobeck | Franciscan University of Steubenville
  • DrSobeck

    Dr. Emily Sobeck

    Assistant Professor of Special Education

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    • University of Pittsburgh, Doctor of Philosophy in Special Education, April 2016 
    • California University of Pennsylvania, Master of Education, December 2011 
    • California University of Pennsylvania, Bachelor of Arts in Education, December 2007

    Professional Experience

    • Assistant Professor of Special Education - Franciscan University of Steubenville 
    • Summer Adjunct Professor of Special Education - University of Pittsburgh
    • Research and Teaching Assistant, Doctoral Student, Apprenticeship in Special Education Instruction, Research, and Leadership (ASPIRE) Fellow - University of Pittsburgh
    • O’Donnell Learn: Subject Matter Expert, Primary content author for an online-based introduction to special education course offered by Carnegie Mellon-backed by Acrobatiq and SAGE publications. Course: Special Education and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Families and Students
    • Special Education Extended School Year (ESY) Teacher (K-3), Chartiers Valley School District, Bridgeville, PA *2013 Program Development 
    • Special Education Teacher (Grades K -1, Resource and Inclusion) - Chartiers Valley Primary School
    • Special Education Long-Term Substitute Teacher (Grades 9-11, Reading Decoding, Reading Comprehension, English 9, English 10, English 11, Study Skills) - Baldwin High School
    • Student Teacher (Special Education Grades 9-11 and Regular Education 3rd Grade) - Clairton City School District
    • Field Student (Kindergarten Direct Instruction Classroom) - Clairton City School District
    • Camp Invention Counselor (Grades K-3) Jefferson Elementary School - West Jefferson Hills School District
    • Youth worker, 6th -12th grade students (weekly youth group leader, weekend retreats, mission trips, discussion leader, speaker, collaboration with community members, planned and organized events) - Pleasant Hills Community Church


    • Principal Papers (PK-12)
    • Instructional II Special Education (PK-12) 
    •  Instructional II Elementary Education (K-6) 
    •  Instructional II English (7-12) 
    •  Autism Specialist (PK-12) 
    • Non-Violent Crisis Intervention 
    • Instructional I Special Education (PK-12) 
    •  Instructional I Elementary Education (K-6) 
    •  Instructional I English (7-12)

    Research Experience

    • Principal Investigator: 
      • Paraeducator training and supervision survey being designed for individuals within the Council for Exceptional Children, Teacher Education Division of Council for Exceptional Children, and the National Resource Association for Paraeducators. 
      • The Effects of Didactic Instruction and Performance Feedback on Paraeducators’ Use of Positive Behavior Support Strategies in Inclusive Settings 
      • Paraeducator Survey: Conducted a dual state survey that analyzed the perspectives of special education teachers, paraeducators, and building-level administrators relative to paraeducator training. Completed all steps of the research project including developing the conceptual framework through an extensive review of the literature, completing the IRB process, drafting and disseminating the survey, using internet software (i.e., Qualtrics) to collect and maintain data, analyzing the data using SPSS software, and drafting both a manuscript and multiple conference presentations.
    • Research Assistant:
      • Barriers to Implementing Behavior Intervention Plans: Results of a Statewide Teacher Survey. Contributed to the development of the survey tool, created the online survey using the Qualtrics survey software, disseminated the survey to participants, and assisted in maintaining and analyzing data. Project focuses on the barriers teachers face when implementing behavior management plans and the impact those factors have on effective instruction and classroom management. 
      • PASA Administration Evaluation: Contributed to the development and implementation of the coding scheme in order to analyze both student and teacher behaviors during the administration of the reading and math PASA assessments. Project focuses on identifying effective teacher administration strategies in order to improve student behavior.  
      • Assisted in a systematic review of literature on parent-mediated behavior interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder. Completed the literature search process, initial and secondary coding procedures, Sobeck_2016 4 contributed to the conceptual framework for the review, and assisted in writing the manuscript. 
      • Examined the effectiveness of parent-implemented behavior interventions for children with autism in three African American families. 
      • Puranik, C., Lemons, C.J., & Al Otaiba, S. (2012-2015). Peer-assisted writing strategies for Kindergarten (PAWS). Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education. R305A120368 ($1,177,128). 
      • Project PAWS: Created materials and curriculum for kindergarten students that focused on improving handwriting, spelling, phonemic awareness, and phonics. Participated in weekly program development meetings, collaborated with a team of 10 colleagues, developed relationships with cooperating schools, and delivered intervention to small groups of kindergarten students.


    Sobeck, E.E., (2019). Perspectives of current practice and barriers of paraeducator training for individual who work with students with autism in inclusive settings. Journal of the American Academy of Special Education Professionals

    Wynkoop, K. S., Robertson, R., & Sobeck, E.E. (2018). Effects of video modeling and video modeling plus prompting and reinforcement on daily living skills of a student with autism. Journal of the American Academy of Special Education Professionals

    Robertson, R.R., Schwartz, R., Sobeck, E. E., & Wynkoop, K. (2017). Participant diversity and generalizability in special education research: Parent-mediated behavior interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder. Remedial and Special Education, 38(5), 259-271. 

     Sobeck, E. E. (2016). Nine tips for creating an effective extended school year program for students with disabilities. Intervention in School and Clinic.

    Honors and Awards

    • Council for Exceptional Children’s (CEC) Teacher Education Division (TED) 2016 Outstanding Dissertation Award 
    • Council for Exceptional Children – Division for Research Doctoral Student Scholar 2015-2016 
    • University of Pittsburgh Research Registry’s “Highlight a Researcher” 
    • Research and Teaching Fellow, Doctoral Student, Apprenticeship in Special Education Instruction, Research, and Leadership (ASPIRE) Fellow, University of Pittsburgh, Department of Instruction and Learning, Pittsburgh, PA (2012- 2016)
    • Graduated Summa Cum Laude B.S. (2007) M. Ed (2011) 
    •  Honor’s College Graduate, California University of Pennsylvania (2007)
    • Delta Kappa Gamma: Alpha Pi Chapter -Dr. Lillian Fehr Education Grant Recipient (2007) 
    • Presidential Scholar, California University of Pennsylvania (2006) 
    • California University of Pennsylvania Dean’s List (2003-2007)
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