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  • Center for Education

    • Graduate Division
    • Hyatt Hall
    • tel: 610-499-4294
    • fax: 610-499-4623
  • Katia Ciampa, PhD

Student Research, Cognitive Studies in Reading (EdD)

Each student is required to complete a dissertation to earn a cognitive studies in reading doctoral degree

The dissertation problem addressed by the candidate’s research must pertain to reading/language arts and be such that it will contribute to improved practice within the field and not be limited to an institutional problem.

Participation in research promotes the development of a student’s problem-solving skills and helps them develop a connection to the pedagogical world. These projects also provide students with valuable research experience and have led to publications and presentations by students at local, national, and international conferences.

Students must complete their doctoral dissertations within four years of doctoral candidacy.

Brain Injury and Inferences in Reading

In this dissertation, adults recovering from brain injuries were compared in the types of forward inferences they make during reading based on primary location of injury (right hemisphere, left hemisphere, or both). Those subjects whose injuries were primarily in the left hemisphere made inferences that were identical to non-injured controls, while those with injuries in the right hemisphere or both hemispheres tended to make unusual inferences that were causally relevant, but temporally delayed.

Visualization as an Aid to Vocabulary Acquisition

A simple method of enhancing vocabulary acquisition involving use of student-generated sketches was investigated in this dissertation. All students improved on weekly vocabulary tests by using word study cards, but those students that created sketches to help them remember a word's meaning improved significantly more.

Using Technology to Enhance Writing by Resistant High School Students

Taking advantage of a one-to-one laptop initiative, this dissertation investigated the influence of a writing program that emphasized Internet images and music as interpretive devices to enhance the presentations and discussions around reading assignments. Findings showed improved motivation, persistence, and quality in completion of writing assignments.