Literature Review Process


  1. To determine the evidence base for secondary transition practices;
  2. To disseminate the information; and
  3. To make recommendations to the Institute for Educational Science (IES) for a comprehensive meta-analysis of specific transition services or practice.

Audience -- the primary audience is state and local transition personnel and researchers.

Procedures (all pdfs, 160 to 345 KB)

  1. Procedures. This is a brief summary of our review process. (pdf,
  2. Decision Rules for Level of Evidence. This table outlines the criteria we use to determine if a service or practice has a strong, moderate, or low level of evidence.
  3. General Coding Form and Instructions
  4. Quality Indicators for Single Subject Design
  5. Quality Indicators for Group Experimental Design
  6. Effect Sizes: Overall Summary - This table summarizes the effect sizes for the interventions used in the group experimental studiens in NSTTAC's identified evidence-based practices. The effect sizes in this table were reported in the study or calculated based on the data provided for each mesure. Cohen's d was used to calculate when effect sizes not provided by the authors.
  7. Effect Sizes: Detailed Analysis - The additional detail reflects the multiple components of a measure used in a study (e.g., seven measures of "student verbal contributions" in a study of the effects of the Self-Advocacy Strategy; varying effect sizes on one measure for different sub-groups of participants).
  8. What's Needed to Increase the Level of Evidence
  9. What's Needed to Increase the Level of Evidence (organized by skill) 


  • The evidence-base used to establish a practice is not comprehensive. Once we located and reviewed the number of studies needed to establish a practice as strong within our Decision Rules, we did not review further articles. If you wish to develop a comprehensive review of a one of these practices, please contact Catherine Fowler ( or David Test (
  • The quality coding form for single subject research considers the effectiveness of the intervention (e.g., functional relationship), while the quality coding form for group experimental research requires data to allow for calculating the strength of effects. Therefore, we had to calculate effect sizes for the group experimental studies included in our review. More information on effect sizes for the group experimental studies used to establish the evidence-based practices listed on NSTTAC's website is available here
  • NSTTAC is not conducting a comprehensive meta-analysis; however, we will work with researchers interested in conducting such a review. If you are interested, please contact Catherine Fowler ( or David Test (


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