The major objectives of the Center are to advance our understanding of learning disabilities through a multidisciplinary and integrative effort. The central theme of the research program is tackling complexities of learning disabilities in context. We do so by applying state-of-the-art methods that make realistic models of learning disabilities tractable. Our approach is multi-disciplinary, with representation from fields of molecular genetics, behavior genetics, teacher education, educational psychology, developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, and cognitive science. The Center comprises six projects and four cores. Project I, Definition, Classification, and Subtyping develops and tests a new multivariate model of learning disabilities. Project II, Learning Disabilities, Reading Comprehension, and the Classroom Environment, examines the learning context of students with reading disabilities. Project III, A Longitudinal and Experimental Investigation of Written Expression, examines the development of writing and disabilities in written expression in context. Project IV, the Florida Twin Project on Reading, Behavior, and Environment, analyzes the interplay of genes and environments in a large-scale twin study. Project V, Development of Executive Functioning, Attention, and Reading Skills/Disability In Young Children, examines the development of executive functioning from preschool on. Project VI, Genomic Sequence Pattern Analyses in African-American Families with Severe SRD, analyzes genomic bases of reading disability. The work of the Centers is supported by four cores: an Administrative Core, a Service Core, a Data Core, and a PMRN Core.

Public Health Relevance

Learning disabilities represent a high-incidence disability with profound consequences for both schooling and later job success. The proposed work has the potential to improve our understanding of learning disabilities and to improve diagnosis and treatment.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Specialized Center (P50)
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Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZHD1)
Program Officer
Miller, Brett
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Florida State University
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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Quinn, Jamie M; Wagner, Richard K (2015) Gender Differences in Reading Impairment and in the Identification of Impaired Readers: Results From a Large-Scale Study of At-Risk Readers. J Learn Disabil 48:433-45
Quinn, Jamie M; Wagner, Richard K; Petscher, Yaacov et al. (2015) Developmental relations between vocabulary knowledge and reading comprehension: a latent change score modeling study. Child Dev 86:159-75
Wagner, Richard K; Herrera, Sarah K; Spencer, Mercedes et al. (2015) Reconsidering the simple view of reading in an intriguing case of equivalent models: commentary on Tunmer and Chapman (2012). J Learn Disabil 48:115-9
Taylor, Jeanette; Hart, Sara A (2014) A Chaotic Home Environment Accounts for the Association between Respect for Rules Disposition and Reading Comprehension: A Twin Study. Learn Individ Differ 35:70-77
Puranik, Cynthia S; Al Otaiba, Stephanie; Sidler, Jessica Folsom et al. (2014) Exploring the Amount and Type of Writing Instruction during Language Arts Instruction in Kindergarten Classrooms. Read Writ 27:213-236
Kim, Young-Suk; Al Otaiba, Stephanie; Puranik, Cynthia et al. (2014) The contributions of vocabulary and letter writing automaticity to word reading and spelling for kindergartners. Read Writ 27:237-253
Spencer, Mercedes; Wagner, Richard K; Schatschneider, Christopher et al. (2014) Incorporating RTI in a Hybrid Model of Reading Disability. Learn Disabil Q 37:161-171
Connor, Carol McDonald; Spencer, Mercedes; Day, Stephanie L et al. (2014) Capturing the complexity: Content, type, and amount of instruction and quality of the classroom learning environment synergistically predict third graders' vocabulary and reading comprehension outcomes. J Educ Psychol 106:762-778
Al Otaiba, Stephanie; Wagner, Richard K; Miller, Brett (2014) "Waiting to Fail" Redux: Understanding Inadequate Response to Intervention. Learn Disabil Q 37:129-133
Wanzek, Jeanne; Roberts, Greg; Al Otaiba, Stephanie et al. (2014) The Relationship of Print Reading in Tier I Instruction and Reading Achievement for Kindergarten Students At-Risk for Reading Difficulties. Learn Disabil Q 37:148-160

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