Michael McSheehan

Phone: (603) 862-2144
Office: Institute on Disability, 10 West Edge Drive Rm 101, Durham, NH 03824
Michael McSheehan, Project director, institute on disability

Michael McSheehan is a project director with the Institute on Disability/UCED. Michael currently serves as the Coordinator of Technical Assistance for the School-wide Integrated Framework for Transformation (SWIFT) Center, established in 2012, which is a a national K-8 technical assistance center that builds school capacity to provide academic and behavioral support to improve outcomes for all students through equity-based inclusion.

Michael was a developer, researcher, and author of The Beyond Access Model, which has been used successfully by schools across the United States to promote membership in general education classrooms, participation in general education instruction, and learning of general education curriculum by students with significant disabilities.

In partnership with the NH Department of Education, Michael coordinated a four-year effort to revise the NH Alternate Assessment (Gaining Access). He brought insights and lessons learned from that project to a partnership with University of Kentucky (NCSC) and a national consortium of states to design and implement alternate assessment based on common core state standards and the vision of career and college readiness for students with significant disabilities. Michael also coordinated with seven elementary schools and five school districts/SAUs to develop and implement a Response-to-Intervention model that blends academic and behavioral supports (NH RESPONDS). 

Michael consults with various state education agencies and is nationally recognized for his presentations at conferences and exceptional skills in working with teams to solve challenging problems within school-wide improvement and reform efforts.


Center on Inclusive Education (CIE)

A Bold Vision When students with disabilities are provided appropriate instruction and supports, they can learn grade-level general education curriculum, communicate in ways that are commensurate with their same-age peers without disabilities, have meaningful social relationships, and graduate from high school—college and career ready.

Schoolwide Integrated Framework for Transformation (SWIFT) Center

SWIFT Center offers school, states, and districts the ability to build capacity to scale up and sustain new practices for schoolwide inclusive reform in urban, rural, and high-need schools in grades K-8 for students with disabilities.


  • B.S., Communication Disorders, University of New Hampshire

Selected Publications

Jorgensen, C. M., McSheehan, M., & Sonnenmeier, R. M. (2010). The Beyond Access Model Promoting Membership, Participation, and Learning for Students with Disabilities in the General Education Classroom. Brookes Pub.

McSheehan, M. C. (2008). Membership, Participation, and Learning in General Education Classrooms for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders Who Use AAC.

Jorgensen, C. M., McSheehan, M., & Sonnenmeier, R. M. (2007). Presumed competence reflected in the educational programs of students with IDD before and after the Beyond Access professional development intervention. Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability, 32(4), 248-262. doi:10.1080/13668250701704238

McSheehan, M., Sonnenmeier, R. M., Jorgensen, C. M., & Turner, K. (2006). Beyond Communication Access. Topics in Language Disorders, 26(3), 266-290. doi:10.1097/00011363-200607000-00008

Sonnenmeier, R. M., McSheehan, M., & Jorgensen, C. M. (2005). A Case Study of Team Supports for a Student with Autism's Communication and Engagement within the General Education Curriculum: Preliminary Report of the Beyond Access Model. Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 21(2), 101-115. doi:10.1080/07434610500103608

Most Cited Publications