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

KU's Project WRITE Helps Struggling Learners Improve Writing Skills


Researchers in KU’s Center for Research on Learning, Life Span Institute and School of Education & Human Sciences received a $2.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs in 2014 to boost writing skills for middle school students with disabilities. Among the tools developed by the program was Project WRITE, which helps teachers formatively assess which students might need additional support and provides research-backed interventions to monitor progress and improve writing skills aligned with effective technology tools such as word prediction. The researchers have published a series of journal articles showing data that proves the progress monitoring tool is highly effective...

“This system is capable of making recommendations to a teacher on what kind of support a given student might need and provides recommendations that teachers can consider to improve a specific skill,” said Amber Rowland, associate research professor in KU’s Center for Research on Learning and courtesy associate professor of special education.

Learn more by clicking the link above. 


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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