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Systematic Review
Peer-Review Record

A Systematic Review of Single-Case Research on Science-Teaching Interventions to Students with Intellectual Disability or Autism Spectrum Disorder

Disabilities 2021, 1(3), 286-300;
by Georgia Iatraki * and Spyridon-Georgios Soulis
Reviewer 1: Anonymous
Reviewer 2: Anonymous
Reviewer 3: Anonymous
Disabilities 2021, 1(3), 286-300;
Submission received: 22 May 2021 / Revised: 26 August 2021 / Accepted: 14 September 2021 / Published: 19 September 2021

Round 1

Reviewer 1 Report

This is a potentially interesting systematic review on research on science teaching interventions to students with Intellectual Disability. 

However, in the present version, the manuscript has a few weak points:

1) In the present systematic review, there is a lack of research literature about science teaching interventions to students with autism spectrum disorder and without intellectual disability. It seems that this review is focused on people with intellectual disabilities, regardless of comorbidity.

2) The search for literature was carried on two years ago. Probably, there are some new findings which have not been included and should be taken into account. The authors should update the present work.

Author Response

Please see the attachment.

Author Response File: Author Response.docx

Reviewer 2 Report

The present systematic review presents a successful Prisma structure on single-case investigations of science teaching to students with intellectual disabilities or autism spectrum disorder. Said content is of great interest and advances towards the possibility of meeting the diversity of needs of these students. It has a good theoretical foundation, methodological approach and bibliography breakdown.

Author Response

We thank you for your positive comments, as well as for your support.

Reviewer 3 Report

There are several current literature reviews related to science instruction for students with ID or Autism. Three of those are missing from this manuscript. Taylor, Hwang, Rizzo & Hill (2020)- students with ID that measured effects using PND and Tau U; Knight, Wood, McKissick & Kurz (2019)- students with ID and ID/Autism that analyzed studies using CECs quality indicators for sound research; Ehsan, Rispoli, Lory, & Gregori (2018) students with ASD that included a review of the measurement of social validity. There is no need for the current study as a result. 

The methods are sound, the literature review- while missing the above studies and references in a few places (e.g., need the reference for the definitions earlier than line 39- it is unclear if that is the reference for ID)- is useful to set up the research questions. There are some areas that need to be addressed for the English content as the sentence structure is not fluid (line 22, line 25, line 28, etc.). The sentence in the abstract regarding  the study concluding with a discussion is not needed (line 15)- instead it would be more impactful to include the big take away from the review that is highlighted within the discussion section.

Were studies that used an inquiry method included in the review? Lines 132-133 could be interpreted that some concrete outcomes were necessary for measurement that may eliminate inquiry or 5E instruction from inclusion. Additionally (albeit a stretch to think group studies were available), were all studies single case design (line 135)? The PRISMA flow chart is very helpful. 

A major concern is that the three reviews mentioned above - particularly the Knight review that used the CEC (Horner) criteria only found 12 studies that were sound practices from 2009-2018. Your study (2008-2019) that proports to apply the same criteria and describes the analysis for 24 studies report a variety of different outcomes - all of which being more than 12 (beginning line 315). PND may not be sufficient as researchers have called for determining more than non-overlapping data but the degree of the effect. See Pustejovsky, J. E. (2015). Measurement-comparable effect sizes for single-case studies of free-operant behavior. Psychological Methods, 20(3), 342–359.

Another major issue is that the authors include studies in the review that are not in the general education classroom but include that the review contributes to supporting the adaptation of interventions for students to be included in general education classrooms (line 434). The interventions delivered in 1:1 settings in a separate classroom or resource room may not be applicable or useable in a general education classroom. Also this type of leap to general education classrooms is not part of the research question and too much of a stretch for the review. 

Line 365 needs attention. The Discussion section opening lines need attention as it is unclear what is being established as written (lines 3667-369). 

Table 2 is helpful but calculation of effect size would be more helpful. 

Author Response

Please see the attachment.

Author Response File: Author Response.pdf

Round 2

Reviewer 1 Report

Authors have attended to all the questions made by this reviewer


Author Response

Thank you. We have already completed round 1, where we answered all the questions. During round 2, we would like to thank the reviewer for the whole process.

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