The proposed work is a collaboration between research teams on three continents: Africa (the University of Zambia (UNZA) and Macha Mission Hospital ([MMH], Zambia), North America (Yale University, Tufts University, U.S.), and Europe (Leeds Metropolitan University, UK, and University of Jyv?skyl?, Finland). It builds on the existing Yale-UNZA R21 TW006764, which was funded in 2003 and constituted the foundation for forming a team, developing collaborative relationships, transferring expertise, developing assessment instruments, conducting field research, and collecting preliminary data. Building on this foundation, in this application, we propose to (1) identify, using the assessment instruments developed/validated in our R21, two groups of probands: students with Specific Reading Disability (+SRD, n=400) and students without SRD (- SRD, n=400). Only children with at least an average level of intellectual functioning and with at least one sibling in the age range of 6-21 years will be considered as probands in this grouping. Given our pilot data, we anticipate that screening 3,000 children will provide us with an opportunity to ascertain these two samples of probands and recruit at least 2 family members of these probands. Having constructed these two samples of +/-SRD probands and their families, we will be able to investigated manifestation, epidemiology, and etiology of SRD in Zambia. Specifically, we will (1) characterize SRD in the Nyanja, Tongo, and English languages in Zambia using cognitive models of relative componential processes whose deficits form SRD's foundation;(2) describe the home, school, and community social environment and experience of children with SRD in Zambia;and (3) investigate etiological bases of SRD by considering both environmental (e.g., poverty, orphanhood, environmental toxicity) and genetic factors. All research activities in this application will contribute to strengthening collaborative relationships between the team members and providing training and capacity building for relevant skills at the UNZA and MHH institutional, faculty, and graduate student levels.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Fogarty International Center (FIC)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-ICP2-B (51))
Program Officer
Michels, Kathleen M
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Yale University
Schools of Medicine
New Haven
United States
Zip Code
Hein, Sascha; Reich, Jodi; Marks, Sarah et al. (2016) Getting Something out of Nothing: Analyzing Patterns of Null Responses to Improve Data Collection Methods in sub-Saharan Africa. Learn Individ Differ 46:11-16
Hein, Sascha; Tan, Mei; Reich, Jodi et al. (2016) School effects on non-verbal intelligence and nutritional status in rural Zambia. Learn Individ Differ 46:25-37
Mourgues, Catalina; Tan, Mei; Hein, Sascha et al. (2016) Paired Associate Learning Tasks and their Contribution to Reading Skills. Learn Individ Differ 46:54-63
Barbot, Baptiste; Krivulskaya, Suzanna; Hein, Sascha et al. (2016) Identifying learning patterns of children at risk for Specific Reading Disability. Dev Sci 19:402-18
Hein, Sascha; Reich, Jodi; Thuma, Philip E et al. (2014) Physical growth and nonverbal intelligence: associations in Zambia. J Pediatr 165:1017-23.e1
Tan, Mei; Reich, Jodi; Hart, Lesley et al. (2014) Examining the specific effects of context on adaptive behavior and achievement in a rural African community: six case studies from rural areas of Southern province, Zambia. J Autism Dev Disord 44:271-82
Reich, Jodi; Hein, Sascha; Krivulskaya, Suzanna et al. (2013) Associations between household responsibilities and academic competencies in the context of education accessibility in Zambia. Learn Individ Differ 27:
Skiba, Thomas; Landi, Nicole; Wagner, Richard et al. (2011) In search of the perfect phenotype: an analysis of linkage and association studies of reading and reading-related processes. Behav Genet 41:6-30
Palejev, Dean; Hwang, Wookyeon; Landi, Nicole et al. (2011) An application of the elastic net for an endophenotype analysis. Behav Genet 41:120-4