I am interested in issues in psychological and educational measurement, especially those applied to language and literacy. I pursue this interest in three main ways in my research.
First, I am interested in empirically testing theory. If our ideas about psychology, the brain, and education have validity, we should be able to find measurable evidence of those theories. Such tests are most informative when we can weigh evidence of competing theories against each other to see which theories best describe what we observe.
Second, most phenomena in education and psychology occur over time and within a social context. For example, we may observe multiple tests per child, or multiple children per classroom. I am interested in multilevel statistical models to disentangle social and contextual effects from the typical level of observation. Often, this can entail different types of measurement and theory at each level, such as those for individual learning versus those for instructional or social groups.
Third, I am interested in language and literacy. I have been investigating sign language, dyslexia in children and adults, African American dialect, as well as patterns in bilingualism and second-language learning. Performance in these multiple modalities of language can be suggestive for improving instruction and student learning.