For more than 50 years, the University of Kansas Life Span Institute at Parsons has

  • Partnered with national, state, regional, and community partners,
  • Conducted research,
  • Developed model service programs,
  • Provided training for professionals involved in services to young children, youth and adults with disabilities, and their families.

The Parsons LSI includes a component of the Kansas University Center on Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (KUCDD) and the Parsons Research Center.


Assistive Technology for Kansans provided AT services to 60 infants and toddlers with disabilities and their family members; 246 adults with disabilities who were retraining or obtaining part-time or full-time employment; 98 farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural workers with disabilities; 934 seniors needing services to stay in their homes and/or to be active in their communities in FY 2015.

Kansas Inservice Training System (KITS), the state's inservice training program for early intervention professionals, provided training and technical assistance for early intervention and early childhood special education programs in Kansas last year reaching 4,426 teachers, related service providers, and administrators.

Southeast Kansas Respite Services, associated with the Life Span Institute at Parsons, provided respite, supportive home care, payee, and homemaker services to 140 families for a total of 30,666.75 hours, as well as, managing the Social Security benefits for 150 customers in FY 2015.

LSI Parsons Research Center is developing training procedures to prepare children with hearing impairment and other disabilities to learn to respond to the tones used in hearing evaluations; is collaborating with investigators at Texas Tech University on an NIH grant to develop an instrument to assess individuals' transition difficulties that may trigger problem behavior; and continues research on reading with individuals with intellectual disabilities.

By the Numbers

LSI at Parsons faculty and staff provided direct services, training, or technical assistance (TA) to people in over 450 communities in all 105 counties in Kansas. Last year, more than 15,165 (average over 21 years) Kansans were impacted through

  • Training,
  • Technical assistance, and
  • Conference presentations.

Each year, more than 2,726 (average over 12 years) professionals, trainees, educators, and others attend regional, national, international presentations given by LSI at Parsons faculty and staff.

In FY 2015, LSI at Parsons' faculty and staff presented their research and technical expertise to:

  • 89 state, national, and international audiences, in addition to 354 other training and outreach activities.
  • 8 peer-reviewed publications:
    • 3 articles published, 3 in press, 2 accepted pending revision.
  • 2 newsletter series were produced and distributed.

One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
26 prestigious Rhodes Scholars — more than all other Kansas colleges combined
Nearly $290 million in financial aid annually
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
23rd nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets," Military Times
KU Today