A quantitative synthesis of methodology in the meta-analysis of single-subject research for students with disabilities: 1985--2009


The purpose of this review was to examine the methods used to conduct meta-analyses of single-subject research involving students with and at-risk for disabilities. Specifically, the procedures used for preparing, aggregating, analyzing, and evaluating single-subject data across 68 primary syntheses were examined. In addition to these methodological and reporting issues, the present review also considered various characteristics of syntheses to determine their overall prevalence and focus. Results of the review indicated that the publication rate of single-subject meta-analyses has increased considerably in recent years, focusing equally on students with high- and low-incidence disabilities. This review revealed considerable variability in the methods and procedures used to synthesize single-subject research. Based on these findings, suggestions for future single-subject meta-analyses were made.