Improving Systems, Practices and Outcomes

Outcomes Measurement: Training Resources

Preparation for Training

General Topics

Why Collect Outcomes Data?

This section provides background information for those new to outcomes measurement. Learners will:

  • understand the current requirements and the historical roots of federal accountability
  • understand the various purposes and uses of outcomes measurement
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Activities
Suggested Participant Materials
  • PowerPoint slides as handouts
  • Additional handouts included with suggested activities

Understanding The Three Child Outcomes

This section provides an in-depth description of the three child outcomes and the functional nature of the outcomes for the introductory learner. Learners will:

  • understand the development of the three child outcomes
  • understand the content of the three child outcomes
  • differentiate among the three child outcomes
  • differentiate between functional outcomes and discrete skills
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Activities
Suggested Participant Materials
  • PowerPoint slides as handouts
  • PDF: Functional Outcomes (updated September 2012)
  • Additional handouts included with suggested activities

Assessing the Three Child Outcomes

This section presents information about recommended practices for functional assessment and crosswalks for the introductory or intermediate learner. Learners will:

  • understand the use of formal assessment instruments for measuring child outcomes
  • differentiate between evaluation for eligibility purposes and functional assessment of the three outcome areas for accountability purposes
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Activities
Suggested Participant Materials
  • PowerPoint slides as handouts
  • Additional handouts included with suggested activities

Integrating Outcomes

This section provides informationand resources on developing IFSP outcomes and IEP goals.

The Developing High Quality IFSP Outcomes and IEP Goals Training Package was developed collaboratively with staff from WWW: NECTAC, the Western Regional Resource Center (WRRC), and WWW: ECO and includes content about integrating the global child and family outcomes into the IFSP/IEP process, as well as activities that encourage the participants to consider the connection between the child and family outcomes and the development of individual IFSP outcomes and IEP goals. Materials include:

  • A comprehensive PowerPoint presentation
  • Trainer script and presentation notes
  • Handouts
  • Activities

COS Topics

The Child Outcome Summary (COS) Form

This topic introduces the COS form and the 7-point rating scale. It also covers essential knowledge for teams using the COS form. Intended for introductory learners who are new to the COS form. For intermediate learners who need a 'refresher' on the use of the 7-point rating scale, please see the voiced COS form refresher PowerPoint, below. Learners will:

  • understand the rationale for using the COS form
  • differentiate between the a and b questions on the COS form
  • differentiate between the 7 points on the rating scale
  • differentiate among age-appropriate, immediate foundational, and foundational skills and behaviors
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Activities
Suggested Participant Materials

Practice Using the Child Outcome Summary Rating Scale

This section focuses on the team process used to determine a rating on the COS-point scale. Intended as an introduction for learners who are new to the COS process 7or as a 'refresher' for intermediate learners. Learners will:

  • differentiate among the three child outcomes
  • understand how a rating is determined by a team
  • understand the role of information about the child's functioning across settings and situations in determining a rating
  • understand the role of age-expected child development in determining a rating
  • understand the role of the family in the team rating
Suggested Activities:
Suggested Participant Materials
  • Additional handouts included with suggested activities

Refresher

Background on federal and state requirements; review of COS process.

This section re-visits the reasons for collecting outcomes data, the three child outcomes, assessment, and the use of the COS form. For intermediate or advanced learners who need a general 'refresher.' Learners will:

  • understand the current requirements and the historical roots of federal accountability
  • understand the various purposes and uses of outcomes measurement
  • understand the content of the three child outcomes
  • differentiate among the three child outcomes
  • differentiate between the 7 points on the rating scale
  • differentiate among age-appropriate, immediate foundational, and foundational skills and behaviors
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Activities
Suggested Participant Materials

Involving Families in the COS Process

This topic is for all learners at all levels and addresses the role of families in the COS process and strategies for involving them. Learners will:

  • Understand the role of the family in the team rating
  • Understand how to evaluate a team discussion for quality as relates to family participation
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Participant Materials
  • PowerPoint slides as handouts
  • PDF: Role of families handout (updated November 2012)
  • Additional handouts included with suggested activities

COS Process Quality Assurance

This section provides guidance for checking the quality of the COS process. For intermediate or advanced learners, particularly those who supervise COS users or are otherwise responsible for assuring the quality of COS data. Learners will:

  • Understand key considerations related to accurately completing the COS process and form
  • Understand how to evaluate a team discussion for quality
  • Understand how to evaluate completed child outcomes summary forms for accuracy
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Activities
Suggested Participant Materials

Looking at Data

This topic covers child outcomes data analysis and use. For intermediate or advanced learners, particularly those who are responsible for or interested in data management, interpretation, and reporting. Learners will:

  • Understand child outcomes data for program improvement, including for instruction, resource allocation, and professional development
Trainer Information and Resources
Suggested Activities
Suggested Participant Materials
  • PowerPoint slides as handouts
  • Additional handouts included with suggested activities

Activities

Sample State Trainings

The following materials are from trainings conducted in several states by the ECO Center.

  • Arkansas 2013 Data Summit Workshop: This training was conducted in June 2013 for early intervention and early childhood service providers at the 2013 Data Summit in Little Rock, Arkansas. Information in this workshop included components of the COS process as well as looking at and interpreting data.
  • Massachusetts Indicator 7 Workshop This training was conducted in June 2013 for service providers and supervisors in early childhood special education in MA. Information included components of the COS process as well as looking at and interpreting data.
  • Oklahoma Early Intervention and Preschool Special Education Programs: This training was conducted in December 2012 by Grace Kelly (SERRC) and Christina Kasprzak, NECTAC/ECO Center.
  • Massachusetts Interagency Coordinating Council: Hosted by Kathy Hebbeler, this October 2012 webinar presented "Embedding Child and Family Outcomes" to a retreat for the Massachusetts ICC and also included the national and Massachusetts data on child outcomes for 2010-11.
  • Iowa: Early Childhood Outcomes Workshop: This training was conducted in June 2012 for service providers that work in both the early intervention and early childhood special education programs in Iowa. Information and activities in the training related to the main components of the COS process (assessment, the 7-point scale, age anchoring and the decision tree) as well as offered opportunities to practice using the components to complete ratings on sample children. Additional information about ensuring a quality COS process and data reporting was included.
  • Maryland: COS Training for Part C Providers: ECO Center staff collaborated with staff from the Maryland State Department of Education and Johns Hopkins University's Center for Technology in Education to provide COS training to Maryland Part C providers in November 2011. The training was organized by tracks: Track 1 content was intended for new users of the COS process, while Track 2 was designed for advanced users and trainers throughout the state.
  • Washington: Child Outcomes Summary Process in New ESIT DMS: This presentation was conducted in December 2011 by Kathy Hebbeler, ECO Center at SRI. Includes information about completing outcomes measurement within the newly developed Washington IFSP document.
  • Texas: Integrating Child Outcomes Measurement into the IEP Process: This training was conducted with 20-25 TA providers that work in the Texas Regional Service Centers on the topic of integrating the child outcomes summary process into the IEP process and on involving families more in both the COS process and the IEP process. Information and activities related to integrating child outcomes measurement into the IEP process, communication strategies to build collaboration, involving families in the Child Outcomes Summary Form (COSF) discussion, and involving families in the IEP process.
  • Texas: Analyzing and Using Child Outcomes Data: This training was conducted with 25-30 TA providers that work in the Texas Regional Service Centers on the topic of analyzing and using child outcomes data collected using the Child Outcomes Summary Form (COSF). Information and activities related to reviewing and interpreting data, pattern checking, and communicating with various audiences about the data.
  • Ohio Preschool Special Education Outcomes Institute on Data Analysis: ECO Center and NECTAC staff collaborated with Ohio's Office of Early Learning and School Readiness, Department of Education to conduct two two-day professional development opportunities for local 619 administrators and service providers. This training emphasized the reporting and use of child outcomes data.
  • Texas: Increasing the Quality of Child Outcomes Data: This training was conducted with 20-25 TA providers that work in the Texas Regional Service Centers on the topic of increasing the quality of child outcomes data collected using the Child Outcomes Summary Form (COSF). Information and activities related to reviewing and interpreting data, pattern checking, and communicating with various audiences about the data.
  • Delaware: COSF Refresher: ECO Center staff conducted a one-day 'COSF Refresher' training with Part C and 619 (preschool) staff in Delaware on March 10, 2010. Topics included the history and background of the child outcomes measurement requirement, understanding the 7-point COSF scale, immediate foundational skills, and recommended practices for the COSF process.
  • North Carolina: Child Outcomes Measurement: Under the NC General Supervision Enhancement Grant, ECO Center staff developed four modules to address child outcomes measurement. A needs assessment completed by local Part C administrators identified the need for professional development in these areas --professional development for new staff, COSF refresher training, quality assurance, and data analysis. The four modules address each of these topics in turn.
  • Illinois: Got Data? A Workshop on Early Childhood Outcomes: This two-day training provided a review of child outcomes measurement and data collection using the COSF. The training also introduced strategies for assuring the quality of COSF data and ways to analyze and use outcome data for program improvement.

Child Development

Age-Expected Child Development Resources

Below are selected resources helpful in understanding typical child development. What resources do you use for understanding age-expected child development? Please share them with us! Email your suggestions or links to ectacenter@unc.edu.

Printable version: Age-expected resources

  • PDF: ASQ-SE Social-Emotional Development Guide: offers age-appropriate milestones in social-emotional development for children from 2 months to 60 months.
  • Video: WWW: Baby and Toddler Milestones, Albert Einstein College of Medicine (Yeshiva University), 2012: In this public service video for parents, Lisa Shulman, M.D., uses video of babies and toddlers to show the communication milestones expected in typically developing children. She also discusses what parents should do if they suspect their child is developmentally delayed.
  • WWW: American Academy of Pediatrics: Offers health and developmental milestones for different stages, and developmental signs which may need further evaluation.
  • WWW: Centers for Disease Control: Developmental Milestones: This website provides information on developmental milestones for children from 3 months to 5 years of age and offers developmental warning signs for each age group.The site also offers interactive tools for users to specify certain ages, select areas of development, and examine expected changes in milestones overtime.
  • Colorado age-anchoring resources: These materials, developed by Larimer County (Colorado), provide examples of age-expected development according to the three child outcome areas. They cover child skills and functioning from birth to 36 months.
  • WWW: First Signs: First Signs is a public awareness and training program addressing early detection and intervention of autism and other developmental disorders. This site provides information on monitoring development, typical milestones, video clips of children with ASD, and tips on sharing concerns.
  • Illinois Child Development Modules: Understanding Young Children's Development: Two narrated modules were developed by training personnel in Illinois based oncontent developed by the University of Connecticut Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities. The modules correspond to two of the three child outcome areasand are focused on identifying age-appropriate skills among children zero to three:
  • PDF: Infant and Toddler Connection of Virginia: This manual was developed to provide a resource to assist practitioners in determining how a child is functioning in relation to their same aged peers in the three OSEP outcome areas. The manual reviews typical child development among infants and toddlers ages birth to three.The NC Department of Public Instruction (DPI) has a number of publications available to help explain the importance of child outcomes, as well as the process and requirements. Click here for more information.
  • The Infant Mental Health Program (IMHP) out of Canada created Comfort, Play & Teach (CPT) materials that include a list of developmental milestones for children birth - 60 months.  They are available in both a full set or in an overview of 6 age increments for infants, toddlers and preschoolers. IMHP also created a Hand in Hand series resource kit that provides more detail about social-emotional milestones and help providers identify how to use developmental information tuild individualized support plans and activities that support development among children with delays or disabilities. 
  • PDF: Maryland's Part C Age-Anchored Early Learning Guidelines: For children birth to age three.
  • WWW: Milestones in Action: is a free image library that features photos and videos of children demonstrating developmental milestones from 2 months to 5 years of age. This tool was created to help parents, early care and education providers, and healthcare providers identify developmental milestones in children and may be used:
    • to support information given during trainings
    • to support observations and conversations within team about age-appropriate milestones
  • WWW: The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders: This site provides background information on speech and language development from birth to 5 years. Interactive checklists for different ages are available.
  • North Dakota DPI Age Expectation Developmental Milestones: This document was developed by North Dakota's Department of Public Instruction and documents age-expected functioning according to the three child outcomes. They also have a three-page milestones quick reference.
  • WWW: Parenting Counts Developmental Timeline: This online resource from Talaris Institute provides research-based information about children's developmental milestones from birth to age 5.
  • WWW: Pathways: An online resource for information and activities related to infant and child development.
  • WWW: University of Connecticut Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities: An online training module on social-emotional development in infants and toddlers related to the three OSEP child outcomes.
  • WWW: The University of Maryland Medical Center: This site provides an overview of common developmental milestones and recommendations for play activities at various ages from birth to 5 years.
  • WWW: Zero to Three: Brain development, challenging behaviors, mental health topics, play, social development, temperament, and more. Each section has interactive tools, parent handouts, tip sheets, FAQs, articles, PowerPoint slides, and other resources.

Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center

  • CB 8040
  • Chapel Hill, NC 27599-8040
  • phone: 919.962.2001
  • fax: 919.966.7463
  • email: ectacenter@unc.edu

The ECTA Center is a program of the FPG Child Development Institute of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, funded through cooperative agreement number H326P120002 from the Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education. Opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent the Department of Education's position or policy.

  • FPG Child Development Institute
  • OSEP's TA&D Network:IDEAs that Work