Tara Flanagan

Academic title(s): 

Associate Professor, Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology

Associate MemberInstitute for Human Development and Well-Being (IHDW)


Contact Information
Email address: 
tara.flanagan [at] mcgill.ca
Fax number: 
Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology

Ph.D., McGill University

Area of expertise: 
Current research: 

Current Grants

1. Ministere de l’Éducation, du Loisir et du Sport, Québec (2016-2018). MOVES: MOving from Vocational to Entrepreneurial Skills for Students with Intellectual Disabilities.

2. McGill Social Sciences and Humanities Research Grant (2016-2017). Transition to School for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: An Investigation of the Effectiveness of Systematic Transition Planning.

3. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC; Insight Grants) (2015-2020). The Development of Inclusive Educational Practices for Beginning Teachers.

4. Ministere de l’Éducation, du Loisir et du Sport, Québec (2014-2016). LIVE: Learning in Individualized Vocational Environments.


Research Team

SPARC (Social Policy, Advocacy, Research, Community) is comprised of graduate students from diverse backgrounds and with an array of strengths and interests. Team members include students from Human Development and Law programs, a fellow at the McGill Institute of Health and Social Policy, teachers, practitioners, and students with disabilities. SPARC's mandate is to promote social inclusion among individuals with disabilities by emphasizing self-determination, community, and a shared responsibility for successful outcomes.

Graduate supervision: 

My main scholarly interests and research grants are in the areas of social inclusion, social policy, transition from school to the community, self-determination, and quality of life among individuals with various types of disabilities and among other equity-seeking groups.



Selected publications: 

Saxe, A., Hashemy, S., & Flanagan, T. (accepted). Using Self-Determination to foster resilience: Results from the Supporting Transitions for At-Risk Students (STARS) intervention. Conference proceedings of 3ème Congrès mondial sur la résilience.

Chatenoud, C., Beauregard, F., Trépanier, N., & Flanagan, T. (in press). Le point de vue des parents sur l’inclusion et l’intégration scolaires de leur enfant qui présente un trouble du développement. Prud’homme, L., Duchesne, H., Bonvin, P. et Vienneau, R. (dir.). L’inclusion scolaire : ses fondements, ses acteurs et ses pratiques. Bruxelles : De Boeck Supérieur.

Saxe, A., & Flanagan, T. (in press). Unprepared for the sexual expression of adults with developmental disabilities: An appeal for sex education training for support workers. Sexuality and Disability.

Budd, J., Fichten, C. S., Jorgensen, M., Havel, A., Flanagan, T. (2016). Comparing the Academic Performance and Persistence of College/University Students with ADHD, LD, and Comorbid ADHD and LD. Journal of Education and Training Studies, 4, 206-216.

Flanagan, T., Brodeur, D., & Burack, J. A. (2015). A point of departure in the comparison of social and nonsocial visual orienting among persons with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Autism Research, 8, 575-582.

Fovet, F., Benson, F.J., & Flanagan, T. (2015). What about field placements and real world learning experiences? In E. Gardner (Ed.) Implementing Universal Design for Learning: Selected papers from the 2014 UDL-IRN Summit. The Universal Design for Learning Implementation and Research Network: Laurence, KS.

Benson, F. J., Smith, N. G., & Flanagan, T. (2014). Easing the transition for queer student teachers from program to field: Implications for teacher education. Journal of Homosexuality, 61, 382-398.

Flanagan, T., Benson, F. J., & Fovet, F. (2014). A multi-perspective examination of the barriers to field-placement experiences for students with disabilities. Collected Essays on Learning and Teaching, 7, 1-6.

Benson, F. J., Smith, N. G., & Flanagan, T. (2014). Easing the transition for queer student teachers from program to field: Implications for teacher education. Journal of Homosexuality.

Saxe, A. & Flanagan, T. (2014). Factors that impact support workers' perceptions of the sexuality of adults with developmental disabilities: A quantitative analysis. Journal of Sexuality and Disability, 32, 45-63.

Marfull-Jensen, M., & Flanagan, T. (2014). The 2010 Chilean National Disability Law: Self-determination in a collectivistic society. Journal of Disability Policy Studies. Published online 2 July, 2014, 1-9.

Gaudreau, N., Royer, É., Frenette, É., Beaumont, C., & Flanagan, T. (2013). Classroom behavior management: The effects of in-service training on elementary teachers' self-efficacy beliefs. McGill Journal of Education, 48, 359-382.

Marfull-Jensen, M., Flanagan, T., & Ossa Cornejo, C. (2013). Desarrollo de habilidades para la vida: promoción de la autodeterminación en jóvenes con discapacidad [Life skills development: Self-determination promotion in young people with disabilities]. Revista Iberoamericana de Educación 63, 51-62.

Benson, F. J., Flanagan, T., & Fovet, F. (2013) When real world learning encounters barriers. A catalyst for change in service provision. Communiqué, 14, 15-16.

Flanagan, T., Iarocci, G., D'Arrisso, A., Mandour, T., Tootoosis, C., Robinson, S., & Burack, J. A. (2011). Reduced ratings of physical and relational aggression for youths with a strong cultural identity: Evidence from the Naskapi people. Journal of Adolescent Health, 49,155-159.

LaFortune et al., (2011). Manifeste pour une école compétente. Québec: Presses de l’Université du Québec.

Flanagan, T., Smith, N. G., & Benson, F. J. (2010). Identities in transition: Considerations for queer student teachers in the move from program to field. In A. P. Grace, C. M. Dawson, & A. K. Hillyard (Eds.), Queer issues in the study of education and culture II (pp. 23-26). Proceedings of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education Pre-Conference, Montréal, QC.

Flanagan, T., Russo, N., Flores, H. & Burack, J.A. (2008). The developmental approach to the study of Down syndrome: Contemporary issues in historical perspective. Down Syndrome: Research and Practice , 12 (2), 96-100.

Russo, N., Burack, J. A., Flanagan, T., Berringer, D., Iarocci, G. & Zelazo, P. D. (2007). Deconstructing the executive function deficit in autism: Implications for cognitive neuroscience. Brain and Cognition, 65, 77-86.

Flanagan T., Enns J.T., Murphy M.M., Russo N., Abbeduto L., Randolph B.,& Burack J.A. (2007). Differences in visual orienting between persons with Down or fragile X syndrome. Brain and Cognition, 65, 128-134.

Burack, J. A., Flanagan, T., Peled, T., Sutton, H. M., Zygmuntowicz, C., & Manly, J.T. (2006). Social perspective-taking skills in maltreated children and adolescents. Developmental Psychology, 42,207-217.

Goldman, K. J., Flanagan, T., Shulman, C., Enns, J. T., & Burack, J. A. (2005).Voluntary orienting among children and adolescents with Down syndrome and MA- matched typically developing children.American Journal on Mental Retardation, 110, 157-163.

Burack, J. A., Iarocci, G., Flanagan, T., & Bowler, D. (2004). On mosaics and melting pots: Conceptual considerations of comparison and matching strategies. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 34, 65-73.

Book images: 
Professional activities: 

I am a co-Chair of the JBSCE's (Joint Board-Senate Committee on Equity) Subcommittee on Persons with Disabilities. This subcommittee is comprised of a wide array of students, faculty, and staff members who are invested in recommending university policy and in promoting a more inclusive McGill. One of the subcommittee's early initiatives was to co-host a Disability Film Festival, "Regarding Disability: A Film Festival", from March 21-28, 2013.

I am the Graduate Program Director for Human Development (MA & PhD) and for Inclusive Education (MEd), and Educational Psychology (MEd).