Faculty Profiles

Jwa K. Kim, Ph.D., Program Director
Jwa K. Kim received his Ph.D. degree in Quantitative Psychology from the University of Oklahoma, specializing in item response theory (IRT). He is a Professor of Psychology and Literacy Studies. He is the Director of the Literacy Studies Ph.D. Program. His research interests include ability estimation in multidimensional IRT, test construction and validation, multivariate statistical methods, and religiosity scale validations.

Aleka A. Blackwell, Ph.D.
Aleka Blackwell has a Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics from Boston University with an emphasis on first language acquisition and is an Associate Professor of English and Linguistics. She teaches courses in English Grammar and Linguistics. She publishes on the acquisition of adjectives by preschool children, is developing vocabulary assessment measures, and researches the characteristics of highly-proficient word learners.

Amy Elleman, Ph.D.
Amy Elleman received her Ph.D. in Special Education with an emphasis in reading comprehension from Vanderbilt University. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Elementary and Special Education. Her research interests include understanding the contributions of knowledge building, vocabulary, and inference generation in the process of reading comprehension. Current projects include evaluating the validity of current reading comprehension tests, conducting a meta-analysis of comprehension interventions, and developing a method for teaching inference generation to children who struggle with extracting meaning from text.

Rebecca M. Fischer, Ph.D. 
Rebecca Fischer received her Ph.D. in Hearing Sciences from Vanderbilt University. She is currently a Professor of Communication Disorders, and Chair of the Department of Speech & Theatre. Research interests include clinical supervision and instruction; auditory processing disorders; and, language and speech development in children with hearing impairments.

Cyrille Magne, Ph.D.
Dr. Cyrille Magne research interests lie primarily in the areas of psycholinguistics and cognitive neuroscience. Current projects focus on the neural correlates of prosodic processing in spoken and sung language, and comparison between language and music, using methods presenting different temporal (EEG) and spatial (fMRI) resolutions.