The College of Education Researcher of the Year Award exists to honor and recognize a tenure-track faculty member with significant contributions to the investigation and advancement of their respective field.

Since joining the Special Education faculty in 2003, Julie Stoner’s research efforts have centered on impact for special population learners. She states that she is driven by, and dedicated to, a research agenda whose potential outcomes enhance the lives of children with disabilities.

Stoner’s research output in less than a decade is impressive: 28 journal articles, two book chapters, 63 presentations, and 1 program evaluation. She has been awarded eleven grants, nine internal, and two external to the University.

Stoner’s efforts are nothing if not labor intensive. With a background as a speech language pathologist, she understands the value of qualitative research in the field of special education. During her work as co-investigator for the “Making a Difference Using Assistive Technology” grant, she spent two days a week with at-risk children at a local preschool. The research identified at-risk populations and increased the assistive technologies available to them in the classroom, provided teachers with the competencies to use these technologies, and ultimately implemented interventions that improved the vocabulary of the students.

For the past three years, Stoner has also been involved in a federally funded grant titled the “Parent-Implemented Communication Strategies Project.” This work has increased the communication skills of students by approaching intervention from the parents’ side. Stoner helped teach the parents of children with disabilities to implement interventions that have increased their child’s vocabulary.

Stoner said she believes that collaboration enables a more rigorous, comprehensive, and creative approach to qualitative research. And, she is quick to out the help she has received from many of the colleagues she has had the chance to work with throughout the years.