35. Grow Your Toolbox: Leveraging Science to Improve Writing for Students with Complex Needs

Speaker: Janet Sturm, Ph.D., Ph.D., CCC-SLP, ASHA-F, BCSCL
The ability to write has enormous power for all students, especially those with complex learning needs. The good news is that decades of research across the world have given us a preponderance of evidence to inform how reading and writing develop. Given that the pandemic has resulted in significant reductions in instruction and student backslide, using science to increase instructional efficacy and efficiency, and optimize student outcomes, is essential. Learn how all students, especially those with complex learning needs, can become authors when systematic, sequential, and explicit instruction is anchored in the science of writing. This session will also show how the not-so-simple view of writing can help practitioners assess the knowledge, skills, and curriculum materials needed to improve evidence-based practice in written language. Classroom-based videos and student examples will be shared throughout the session. Participants will see how assessment data, partnered with high-quality instruction, enables changes in the mindset that written language is an important form of communication for ALL individuals.

Credits: Act 48, ASHA, Psych
Audience: Special Education Teachers, Speech therapists, Supervisors/Administrators, Assistive Technology Specialists, Occupational Therapists and/or Physical Therapists, Parents, Guardians, Family Members, Paraprofessionals

Sheadshot of Janet Sturmpeaker Bio:
Janet Sturm, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, BCS-CL, is a professor in the Department of Communication Disorders at Central Michigan University. She has been working in classrooms for over 30 years. Her research and development work focuses on writing instruction for students with disabilities, computer-supported literacy, measurement of beginning writers, and classroom communication. She is a Fellow of ASHA and a Board Certified Specialist in Child Language.

Email: sturm1j@cmich.edu