Participatory research: New approaches to the research to practice dilemma

Luanna H. Meyer, Hyun Sook Park, Marquita Grenot-Scheyer, Ilene Schwartz, Beth Harry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The dissemination of research into practice presents an enduring challenge to the social sciences. Despite intervention research focused on individuals with disabilities and their families that reveals clear pathways to improving practice, researchers and practitioners alike express concern regarding limited and slow implementation of the results of research in typical school and community settings. This article reviews three widely disparate literatures concerned with the gap between research and practice, highlighting suggestions for narrowing the gap through the incorporation of elements of practice into the research process. For each of the steps in our research on the social relationships of children and youth, we present examples of participatory research approaches to decision making designed to increase the relevance and validity of findings for everyday practice. We conclude with criteria that might be applied to the design of effective interventions for research validation to increase the likelihood that the results of intervention research will be adopted by school and community constituencies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)165-177
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of the Association for Persons with Severe Handicaps
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 1998


  • Innovations
  • Participatory research
  • Research to practice
  • Social relationships

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)


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