Profile picture of Chris Knowles

Chris Knowles

Senior Research Associate I
College of Education, Educational Leadership, Special Education
Office: 356 Clinical Services Bldg


Dr. Knowles has diverse experiences as an educator and researcher in educational, home, and community contexts. She has worked as a special education professional for students with emotional and behavioral disorders, autism spectrum disorder, and cognitive limitations across the developmental continuum. Her research interests are housed under the desire to improve equitable outcomes for individuals historically marginalized by the education system and society. She has taught courses in Diversity in Special Education, Foundations of Disability, Supporting Students with Low-Incidence Disability, Introduction to Behavior Disorders, and Child Studies.


2017    PhD   Special Education, University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon

2007    MS   Special Education, University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon

2004    BA    Psychology and English, Seattle University, Seattle, Washington


Knowles, C., D’Agostino, S., Kunze, M., Uitto, & D., Douglas, S. (2022). A systematic review of asynchronous online learning opportunities for paraeducators. Journal of Special Education

Knowles, C., Gau, J., Logan, S., Sloane, B., & Rochelle, J. (2022). Service-oriented robotics to promote mobility for young children with disabilities. International Journal for Service Learning in Engineering, Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship17(2), 14-32.

Knowles, C., Shannon, E., & Lind, J. (2021) Animal-assisted activities for children with emotional and behavioral challenges. Children and Youth Services Review131

Shwartzman, R., Knowles, C. (2021) Expanding Accessibility: Sensory Sensitive Programming for Museums. Curator: The Museum Journal65(1), 95-116.

Stegenga, S. M., Sinclair, J., Knowles, C., Storie, S. O., & Seeley, J. R. (2021). Lived experiences of mental health in higher education: A comparative analysis of determinants to supports and services. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 91(6), 738-750.

Sinclair, J., Reardon, K., Bromley, K. W., Knowles, C., Cohen-Lissman, D., & Kuntz, M. (2021). Community Conversations: Finding solutions to increase employment for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Developmental Disabilities Network Journal, 2(1), 67-85.

Knowles, C., Murray, C., Gau, J., & Toste, J. (2020). Teacher-student working alliance among students with emotional and behavioral disorders, Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, doi: 10.1177/0734282919874268 

Sinclair, J., Hansen, S. G., Machalicek, W., Knowles, C., Hirano, K. A., Dolata, J. K., Blakely, A. W., Seeley, J. R., & Murray, C. (2018). A 16-year review of participant diversity in intervention research across a selection of 12 special education journals. Exceptional Children, 84, 312-329.  doi:10.1177/0014402918756989 

Knowles, C., Blakely, A., Hansen, S., Machalicek, W. (2017). Parents with intellectual disabilities experiencing challenging child routines: A pilot study using embedded self-determination practices. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 30(3), 433-444. 

Trader, B., Stonemeier, J., Berg, T., Knowles, C., Massar, M., Monzalve, M., Pinkelman, S., Nese, R., Ruppert, T., Horner, R. (2017). Promoting inclusion through evidence-based alternatives to restraint and seclusion. Research and Practice for Persons with severe Disabilities, 42(2), 75-88.
Knowles, C., Harris, A., VanNorman, R. (2016). Family fun nights: Collaborative parent education accessible for diverse learning abilities. Early Childhood Education Journal45(3), 393-401.

Knowles, C., Massur, M., Raulston, T., Machalicek, W. (2016). Telehealth consultation in a self-contained classroom for behavior: A pilot study. Preventing School Failure: Alternative Education for Children and Youth, 61(1), 28-38.

Sinclair, J., Kahn, L. G., Rowe, D. A., Mazzotti, V. L., Hirano, K. A., & Knowles, C. (2016) Collaborating to plan and implement a sex education curriculum to individuals with disabilities. Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals. Advance online publication. doi:10.1177/2165143416670136 

Machalicek, W., LeQuia, J., Pinkelman, S., Knowles, C., Raulston, T., Davis, T., & Alresheed, F. (2016). Behavioral telehealth consultation with families of children with autism spectrum disorder. Behavioral Interventions31(3), 223-250.

Knowles, C., Meng, P., & Machalicek, W. (2015) Task sequencing for children with emotional and behavioral disorders: A systematic review. Behavior Modification39(1), 136-166. 

Knowles, C., Machalicek, W., & Van Norman, R. (2015). Parent education for adults with intellectual disability: A review and suggestions for future research. Developmental Neurorehabilitation18(5), 336-348.


The scholarship of Dr. Knowles is focused on developing low-effort and low-cost solutions for complex challenges in educational and community contexts, inspired by her work as a special education professional and as the Associate Director of the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) at the University of Oregon. Her research interests include paraeducator training, student-teacher relationships, and understanding the factors that lead to educator burnout.