Valerie Mazzotti

photo of Val Mazzotti
Professor & Doctoral Program Director, Special Education
COED 359B
704-687-8830

Valerie L. Mazzotti, PhD is a Professor in the Department of Special Education and Child Development at UNC Charlotte. Valerie's research interests include self-determination, secondary transition evidence-based practices and predictors of post-school success, and interagency collaboration for students at-risk for, or with, high incidence disabilities. Specifically, she is interested in effective instructional strategies for embedding self-determination skill development in the general curriculum to support students at-risk for, or with, high incidence disabilities and scaling-up of secondary transition evidence-based practices. Currently, Valerie serves as Co-PI on: (a) one U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs leadership preparation grant; (b) two U.S. Department of Education, Institute for Education Sciences, National Center for Special Education Research grants; and (c) one U.S. Department of Education, Institute for Education Sciences, National Center for Education Evaluation contract. She also works for the National Technical Assistance Center on Transition (NTACT) for which she co-leads the Knowledge Translation team to identify secondary transition evidence-based practices and predictors of post-school success for students with disabilities. Her role with NTACT also includes providing technical assistance and professional development to states and local education agencies to scale-up secondary transition evidence-based practices. Valerie serves as Co-Editor for the peer-reviewed journal, Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals (CDTEI; http://cde.sagepub.com/). 

Areas of Interest and Research

  • Self-determination skill development for students at-risk for, or with, disabilities
  • Evidence-based practices in secondary transition
  • Evidenced-based in-school predictors of post-school success
  • Interagency collaboration in secondary transition
  • Transition services and supports for youth and young adults with disabilities

PROJECTS

Garet, M., Mazzotti, V. L., Heppen, J., Miller, T., & Fowler, C. H. (2019). NCEE: Evaluation of Transition Supports for Youth with Disabilities. United States Department of Education, National Center for Educational Evaluation. [Co-PI, Funded, Solicitation # 919900-19-R-0022, 09/27/19, Sub-contract budget: $1,470,204). The purpose of the Transition Supports Impact Study is to rigorously test the impact of one or more transition strategy(ies) on postschool outcomes for youth with disabilities.

Pennington, R., Mazzotti, V. L., & Beach, K. D (2020). UNC Charlotte’s Ph.D. Program in Special Education: 2020-2025. Developed and submitted to United States Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs: Preparation of Special Education, Early Intervention, and Related Services Leadership Personnel [Co-PI, Funded; H325D190013, CFDA Number: 84.325D, 09/30/19, $1,230,555]. This project funds doctoral students in special education.

Lombardi, A., Morningstar, M. E., Mazzotti, V. L., Swaminathan, H., & Rogers, H. J (2019). Secondary Transition Assessment: Development and Validation of a Student College and Career Readiness Measure. Developed and submitted to the United States Department of Education Institute for Education Sciences: Special Education Research Grants Goal 5 Measurement Proposal. [Co-PI, Funded 07/01/19, R324A190170, CFDA Number: 84.324A, 08/01/19, $1,400,000]. The purpose of this project is to develop a college and career readiness measure for high school students with and without disabilities, entitled College and Career Readiness for Transition (CCR4T). https://ccr4t.education.uconn.edu/ 

Mazzotti, V. L. (2019). Student-Centered Transitions Network in Texas. Subcontract with Houston State University. [PI, Funded from 07/01/19-09/30/20, $110,683]. The purpose of this work is to provide technical assistance to the Student-Centered Transitions Network to streamline a process for SPP Indicator 14 (I-14; post-school outcomes) data collection that will allow the SCTN and local education agencies to reliably and accurately collect I-14 data across the State.

Mazzotti, V. L., Shogren, K., & Little, T. (2018). Promoting Self-Determination for Students with Disabilities: Goal-Setting Challenge App. Funded by the United States Department of Education Institute for Education Sciences: Special Education Research Grants Goal 2 Development & Innovation Proposal. [PI, Funded 6/13/18; CFDA Number: 84.324A, 07/07/17, $1,400,000]. The purpose of this proposal is to empirically develop and test an interactive, web application that will increase adolescents with high incidence disabilities’ knowledge and skills to effectively set and attain academic, behavior, and transition-related goals, leading to increased self-determination and goal attainment.