The ability to proficiently communicate through writing is critical to succeed in school, in the work place, and n civic life. Compared to studies of beginning reading, predictors of reading disabilities, and effective intervention reading components, much less is known about beginning writing and individual differences in writing development. in the proposed research, we will capitalize on the existing ethnically and economically diverse database and sample from the previously funded Florida Center for Learning Disabilities to address 4 specific aims. First, we will examine developmental trajectories of writing for more than 800 students from 1st-6th grade to examine the relations between reading and writing achievement across the elementary years. Second, in this sample, we will examine the extent to which writing performance and disability can be predicted by cognitive, instructional, and home environmental factors. Through the existing database, existing videotapes of literacy instruction, the collection of longitudinal data through 6th grade, and the Florida Progress Monitoring and Reporting Network database (PMRN) we will have data for this sample on cognitive factors (e.g., oral language, reading, writing, self regulation), early instructional environments related to reading and writing, and early home literacy. Third, we will utilize the instructional database and videotapes of instruction to validate malleable targets for early writing instruction. Fourth, we will identify two new cohorts of first grade students (approximately 660 students) to causally examine the impact of first grade instruction in micro-level writing (e.g., transcription and spelling) and macro-level writing (e.g., text structure, self-regulation) through an experimental study. In this experimental study we will evaluate differences in response to instruction based on children's language, literacy, and self-regulation skills. The results of the proposed project will provide important information on written expression development and early writing instruction for children with LD, identifying key mechanisms for early intervention in writing.

Public Health Relevance

The proposed study examines key developmental and environmental factors for children with learning disabilities that can inform early intervention efforts and educational support to increase academic achievement and later employment success.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Specialized Center (P50)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZHD1-DSR-H)
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Florida State University
United States
Zip Code
Erbeli, Florina; Hart, Sara A; Kim, Young-Suk Grace et al. (2017) The Effects of Genetic and Environmental Factors on Writing Development. Learn Individ Differ 59:11-21
Hoff, Erika; Quinn, Jamie M; Giguere, David (2017) What explains the correlation between growth in vocabulary and grammar? New evidence from latent change score analyses of simultaneous bilingual development. Dev Sci :
Jasi?ska, Kaja K; Molfese, Peter J; Kornilov, Sergey A et al. (2017) The BDNF Val66Met polymorphism is associated with structural neuroanatomical differences in young children. Behav Brain Res 328:48-56
Kim, Grace Young-Suk; Schatschneider, Christopher; Wanzek, Jeanne et al. (2017) Writing Evaluation: Rater and Task Effects on the Reliability of Writing Scores for Children in Grades 3 and 4. Read Writ 30:1287-1310
Kim, Young-Suk Grace; Gatlin, Brandy; Al Otaiba, Stephanie et al. (2017) Theorization and an Empirical Investigation of the Component-Based and Developmental Text Writing Fluency Construct. J Learn Disabil :22219417712016
Dombek, Jennifer; Crowe, Elizabeth C; Spencer, Mercedes et al. (2017) Acquiring Science and Social Studies Knowledge in Kindergarten Through Fourth Grade: Conceptualization, Design, Implementation, and Efficacy Testing of Content-Area Literacy Instruction (CALI). J Educ Psychol 109:301-320
Little, Callie W; Haughbrook, Rasheda; Hart, Sara A (2017) Cross-Study Differences in the Etiology of Reading Comprehension: a Meta-Analytical Review of Twin Studies. Behav Genet 47:52-76
Milburn, Trelani F; Lonigan, Christopher J; Allan, Darcey M et al. (2017) Agreement Among Traditional and RTI-based Definitions of Reading-Related Learning Disability with Preschool Children. Learn Individ Differ 55:120-129
Erbeli, Florina; Hart, Sara A; Taylor, Jeanette (2017) Longitudinal Associations Among Reading-Related Skills and Reading Comprehension: A Twin Study. Child Dev :
Spiegel, Jamie A; Lonigan, Christopher J; Phillips, Beth M (2017) Factor structure and utility of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Preschool Version. Psychol Assess 29:172-185

Showing the most recent 10 out of 222 publications