Robin McWilliam, Ph.D

Consultant | Special Education and Multiple Abilities Professor, University of Alabama


  • Early Childhood Special Education and Early Childhood Dual Certification
  • Special Education and Multiple Abilities


  • PhD, UNC Chapel Hill

Areas of Research

  • Early intervention for children 0-5 with disabilities and their families; this includes early childhood special education. Specifically, using a routines-based approach to empower caregivers to be effective with children, so children can receive the most beneficial intervention in their everyday activities.
  • Measuring family quality of life and seeking its predictors in the way early intervention is provided.
  • Models of service delivery in early intervention, such as the number of professionals needed, the number of hours of intervention by professionals needed, the organization of preschool classrooms, how therapists work with teachers, how special educators work with child care providers and preschool teachers.
  • Implementation science and how to take the Routines-Based Model to scale in a state or country.
  • Child engagement: how to measure it, how to promote it, and its function in learning.

Service Interests

  • International Editor, Infants & Young Children
  • Associate Editor, Exceptional Children
  • Past Editor, Journal of Early Intervention
  • Editorial Board, Exceptional Children, Infants & Young Children, Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Journal of Early Intervention, Journal of Special Education, Topics in Early Childhood Special Education
  • Leader and Founder, The RAM Group, an international community of practice and experts on the Routines-Based Model
  • Leading implementation planning meetings for states and countries wanting to improve their early intervention programs
  • Conducting lectures and workshops on the Routines-Based Model
  • Running the annual Routines-Based Interview Certification Institute and the Routines-Based Home Visit Training Course

Teaching Interests

  • Working with doctoral students to foster their understanding of research design, their methodological rigor, and their writing skills.
  • Teaching Introduction to Doctoral Studies in Special Education at The University of Alabama
  • Recent doctoral students have come from Catholic University of Valencia (Spain), ISPA (Lisbon, Portugal), The University of Alabama, and the University of Minho (Braga, Portugal)
  • Teaching international interns for 1-, 3-, or 6-month internships. Recent interns have come from Costa Rica, Germany, Portugal, and Spain
Robin McWilliam
Contact Information
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