Life Span Institute at Parsons
Committed to optimizing the quality of life for individuals with disabilities and their families through research, training, technical assistance and public service.
About the Life Span Institute at Parsons
The Life Span Institute at Parsons has a long history of enhancing the quality of life enjoyed by individuals with disabilities and their families. In 1958, the University of Kansas, Bureau of Child Research, established the University presence in Parsons on the campus of the Parsons State Hospital and Training Center (PSH&TC). The LSI at Parsons is one of 13 centers of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies at the University of Kansas.
Work originating at Parsons is based in the philosophy that research, training, technical assistance and services should be conducted in accordance practices that provide and support accessible and fully inclusive, community-based practices that facilitate the independence and capacity of exercising choices and options by individuals with disabilities and their families.
University of Kansas programs at Parsons
For more than 60 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.
Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities
The Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities (KUCDD) maintains facilities on the University's main campus in Lawrence, at the KU Medical Center in Kansas City, and in Parsons, a rural community in southeastern Kansas.Read more about KUCDD in Parsons
Parsons Research Center
The Parsons Research Center is home to a number of projects, many of which are funded by the Mental Retardation Branch of the National Institution of Child Health and Human Development.Read more about Parsons Research Center
FY 2021 Funding
Our Historic Background
The first national project demonstrating that individuals with intellectual disabilities could learn to cook, clean, meet their own grooming needs and live independently was conducted at Parsons.
University researchers developed and disseminated the first procedures for reliably testing both hearing and vision of persons with intellectual disabilities, whose hearing and vision impairments were typically neither diagnosed nor treated before these developments.
Parsons' researchers pioneered the field of testing and treatment for disorders of speech, language and communication.
The physical location of the Parsons LSI site in southeast Kansas benefits the entire region and its economic base.
University of Kansas programs at Parsons
About LSI at Parsons Projects
The Institute for Life Span Studies at Parsons is engaged in research and training in the field of developmental disabilities and acquired an international reputation for its pioneering work with persons with disabilities.
The Life Span Institute at Parsons is committed to optimizing the quality of life for individuals with disabilities and their families through research, training, technical assistance, and public service.
In FY 2021, LSI at Parsons' faculty and staff provided
Faculty and Staff
Faculty and staff focus their efforts on research, training, and service programs that address the following issues:
- Identifying and increasing access to assistive technology that enhance the ability of individuals to live more independently.
- Providing effective supports for childcare providers resulting in expanded access and improved quality.
- Providing supports to allow families and friends to support individuals with disabilities in their own homes and communities.
- Providing training for the effective and cost-efficient delivery of early prevention and intervention services to Kansas families of infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.
- Electronic media and information for developing and disseminating educational information for researchers and consumers.