Creating Solutions to Educational Challenges

The University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning (KUCRL) is a multidisciplinary research team whose overarching goal is Creating Solutions to Educational Challenges. KUCRL is dedicated to development and research of educational programs and practices that improve outcomes for all learners, including those with learning differences or disabilities. Our recent research and development focuses on online learning for students with disabilities, personalized learning in blended learning classrooms, and the use of technology (e.g., social media, games, virtual reality) to enhance learning for all students. KUCRL is home to the Strategic Instruction Model (SIM), an evidenced based collection of learning strategies, content enhancement teaching routines, and explicit instruction programs. These interventions and practices address higher-order reasoning skills, adolescent literacy, adult literacy, language and reading comprehension strategies, written expression strategies, math skills and strategies, social emotional learning skills, and explicit instruction and routines that respond to diversity in today’s schools. 



Behind Our Research

VOISS offers children with autism spectrum disorder a way to practice social skills

For individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), social interactions can be awkward or difficult to navigate. Whether it’s a conversation in the hallway at school or buying a candy bar at a grocery store, direct instruction and practice of social skills may be required to support success. Practicing these interactions as often as possible is key to long-term development and improvement, but it can be difficult to repeat or practice in-person as much as is needed to feel confident.

The solution may be found in virtual reality applications being developed by researchers at the University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning.

The VOISS, or Virtual Reality Opportunities to Integrate Social Skills, walks users through a variety of potential social interactions. It can be presented in a two-dimensional way on a tablet or laptop, or it can be used with a virtual reality headset.


Get to Know: Amber Rowland

As you look to the future of your work, what are your hopes? I've spent my career thus far imagining how innovative technology can enhance our field. I want to continue to develop technologies and programs that support the individualization of teaching and learning for students and educators. It is critical to work directly with practitioners to ensure I remain grounded in the field while pushing against barriers that keep us from advancement.

What inspires you? Educators who are passionate about their craft and students feeling confident in their learning. Especially if they have struggled previously and something that we do together shifts their trajectory in a positive direction. That's why I do what I do.

Is there an acheivement or contribution you are most proud of? Virtual coaching is something I have done for some time. Covid-19 pushed many researchers into virtual coaching out of necessity, but it is an area where the research is quite new. We are working to become leaders in this area. It is an exciting place to be.

Researcher Spotlight: Amber Rowland

Instructional Materials

Subtraction Facts 0 to 9

Problems like “6 - 3” and “9 - 4” may seem easy, but they probably cause a few anxious moments when students first learn them – especially at an automatic level. This textbook addresses that confusion by helping students understand what subtraction really is.

Multiplication with Regrouping Textbook

Purchase Subtraction Facts 0 to 9 today!

The Inference Strategy: Overview for Educators

If you’re looking for an evidenced-based learning strategy to help your students improve their inferential reading skills, take a minute to learn more about The Inference Strategy. Contact us for more information on how you can bring it to your students today.




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