Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities

About Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities (KUCDD)

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Mission Statement

The mission of the Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities is, through research, training, technical assistance, and community service activities, to enhance the quality of life, self-determination, and inclusion of Kansans with developmental disabilities and their families.


The Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities (KUCDD) is part of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies (LSI), a leading research unit at the University of Kansas. The KUCDD maintains facilities on the University of Kansas Lawrence campus, at the KU Medical Center in Kansas City, and in Parsons in southeast Kansas. KUCDD was established in 1972 under the leadership of Dr. Richard Schiefelbusch, a pioneer in the field of interdisciplinary work related to developmental disabilities. Within the state of Kansas, the KUCDD supports affiliated projects in many communities and provides training and other types of support to both rural and urban regions of the state.  As a University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) funded by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, the core functions of the KUCDD are:

  • Interdisciplinary pre-service preparation and continuing education
  • Research, including basic or applied research, evaluation, and public policy analysis
  • Information dissemination
  • Community services, including direct services, training, technical assistance, and model demonstrations

The Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND) Program at the University of Kansas Medical Center is one of 52 nationwide providing long-term, graduate level interdisciplinary training, services, and care for people with DD. The KUCDD and LEND programs in Kansas continue to collaborate to support the quality of life of Kansans with Developmental Disabilities statewide.


Karrie A. Shogren, Ph.D. is a Professor in the Department of Special Education, Senior Scientist in the Life Span Institute, and Director of the Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities. Dr. Shogren's research focuses on self-determination and systems of support for students with disabilities and she has a specific interest in the multiple, nested contextual factors that impact student outcomes.

Director, Kansas City Site

Dr. Kathryn Ellerbeck is a pediatrician in Kansas City, Kansas and is affiliated with multiple hospitals in the area, including Goodland Regional Medical Center and University of Kansas Hospital. She received her medical degree from University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years.

Director, Life Span Institute, Parsons

David Lindeman, Ph.D. is Director of KUCDD- Parsons, Senior Scientist, Director of the KU Life Span Institute at Parsons, and affiliated with the Department of Special Education. Dr. Lindeman brings to this position  experience in public school, special education administration, preservice and inservice training, as well as previous experience on numerous state and federally-funded projects.

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