I am so pleased that this issue of Infants & Young Children (IYC) coincides with the Sixth International Conference of the International Society of Early Intervention (ISEI). The ISEI conference is being held in Sydney, Australia, from June 25 to June 28, 2019. A vast array of papers, posters, lectures, and keynote sessions are being offered under the conference theme of Research to Practice: An International Perspective. At this time, more than ever, it is so important that we come together across country and political boundaries for the benefit of infants and young children and their families. To commemorate this conference, this issue of IYC contains five international articles.
The ISEI is an organization designed to provide a framework and forum for professionals from around the world to communicate about advances in the field of early intervention. It was founded in 1998 and has more than 3,200 members who represent a diverse group of professionals involved in the field of early intervention. Members include basic and clinical researchers representing a diverse array of biomedical and behavioral disciplines, as well as educators, clinicians, parents, and policy makers in leadership positions. To further commemorate the contribution of the ISEI to the field of early intervention, I look forward to facilitating a future issue of IYC to be edited by Michael Guralnick and Coral Kemp that will feature papers from this important international conference.
Our first article by Coral Kemp, Jennifer Stephenson, Megan Cooper, and Kerry Hodge from Australia focuses on a peer-mediated intervention for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) attending a child care center. A multiple-probe design was used to demonstrate the effectiveness of using typical peers to teach turn taking with an iPad game to three preschool-aged children with ASD. Besides demonstrating the effectiveness of the intervention, maintenance of the taught behavior was demonstrated in two of the three target children. Implications for the use of peer-mediated interventions in inclusive learning environments are discussed.
Our second article by Carolyn Blackburn and Merryl Harvey from England describes the challenges faced by families who have an infant born prematurely. A mixed-methods study described the informational and support needs identified by families after their preterm babies were born. The availability of support was also explored, as was the families' report of their emotional well-being. The authors discuss how unmet needs for information and support findings can negatively impact family interaction patterns in this population and discuss strategies to address this.
Another article from Australia was written by Dawn Adams, Deb Keen, Honey S. Heussler, Rachelle Wicks, and Jacqueline Roberts. These authors also addressed family needs and focused on preschool-aged children with ASD. The mothers of 96 children reported on their access to early childhood intervention (ECI) and their family outcomes as a result of ECI. While the mothers reported their experiences in ECI as generally positive, a large number reported that their children did not participate in community activities as they would want. Higher income mothers reported more community activities. The mothers also reported not having information about options for their children when they aged out of ECI. Implications for greater family involvement in ECI are discussed.
Nicolette Waschl, Huichao Xie, Mo Chen, and Kenneth K. Poon provide an article that used the Beach Center Family Quality of Life (QoL) scale with 307 caregivers of young children with disabilities in Singapore. The purpose of the study was to assess the psychometric properties of the scale with a population that was culturally different from the original sample used to develop the scale. The caregivers also completed additional scales that were used to verify the factor structure and validity of the Beach Center QoL scale. The results of the study supported the validity of the Beach Center QoL scale for use with families in Singapore.
Our last article written by Yi-Lin Pan, Ai-Wen Hwang, Rune J. Simeonsson, Lu Lu, and Hua-Fang Liao examined the alignment of International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) to children's assessment reports. The ICF-CY Code Set for Infants with Early Delay and Disabilities (EDD Code Set) is the application of the ICF for children. Thirty assessment reports for young children with developmental delays were evaluated for alignment to the EDD Code Set. The majority of the assessments were linked to the EDD Code Set, suggesting that the code can be used to guide assessment reporting and documentation of ECIs.
I would like to thank the authors for submitting their work to IYC and the reviewers who assisted the editorial process. In addition, I would like to thank members of the editorial board who are retiring at this time. Their contributions to the field, IYC, and my ability to manage the editorial process have been invaluable. I thank them all.
I also want to welcome our new members to the IYC editorial board. I look forward to working with you all.
—Mary Beth Bruder, PhD