Adolescent Reading (REAL) - Reading Engagement for Adolescent Learning


Principal Investigator

John T. Guthrie

John T. Guthrie is the Jean Mullan Professor Emeritus in the Department of Human Development at the University of Maryland. He received his Ph.D. in educational psychology from the University of Illinois in 1968.  He is a member of the International Reading Association Hall of Fame, and received the Oscar Causey Award from the National Reading Conference. He is a Fellow of the American Education Research Association and the American Psychological Association. In 2011, John Guthrie was elected to the National Academy of Education, a society of esteemed scholars with the mission to relate basic research to policy and practice in education. Dr. Guthrie has published articles such as "Reading motivation and reading comprehension growth in the later elementary years" in Contemporary Educational Psychology (2007) and "Contributions of Concept-Oriented Reading Instruction to knowledge about interventions for motivations in reading" in Educational Psychologist (2007).
Dr. Guthrie is Principal Investigator of a 5-year NICHD-funded grant targeting adolescent reading engagement of information text, focusing on Grade 7 students in a district-wide study from 2007-2012. Engaging Adolescents in Reading (2008) is Dr. Guthrie's latest book, which he edited and co-authored with former students. From 2002-2007, Dr. Guthrie was Principal Investigator of a 5-year federally-funded grant to examine Concept-Oriented Reading Instruction in a district-wide intervention. His findings on this project are published in articles and the book, Motivating Reading Comprehension: Concept-Oriented Reading Instruction, co-edited with Allan Wigfield and Kathleen C. Perencevich (2004).

Co-Principal Investigator

Allan Wigfield

Allan Wigfield is Professor and Chair of the Department of Human Development and Distinguished Scholar-Teacher at the University of Maryland. He received his Ph.D. in educational psychology from the University of Illinois in 1982. His research focuses on how children's motivation develops across the school years in different areas, including reading. In the reading area, Dr. Wigfield has collaborated closely with John Guthrie on two major studies examining the development of children's motivation for reading, and how Concept-Oriented Reading Instruction (CORI) and other instructional practices influence children's reading motivation and reading comprehension. The first project was done with third through fifth grade children. The current project is the REAL study that is examining reading comprehension and motivation in middle school students.

Dr. Wigfield's research has been supported by grants from NSF, NICHD, IERI, and the Spencer Foundation. He has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters on children's motivation and other topics, including the chapter on the development of motivation in the recently-published Handbook of child psychology (6th edition). He has edited four books and four special issues of journals on the development of motivation, and the development of reading comprehension and motivation. Dr. Wigfield was Associate Editor of the Journal of Educational Psychology from 2000 to 2002 and Associate Editor of Child Development from 2001 to 2005. He currently edits the Teaching, Learning, and Human Development section of the American Educational Research Journal. He is a Fellow of Division 15 (Educational Psychology) of the American Psychological Association, a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, and a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association. He has won several awards for his research and teaching.

Patricia M. Richardson

Patricia M. Richardson, Professor of Practice in Education Leadership, Higher Education, and International Education at the University of Maryland, has an extensive background of educational experience. She received her Ph.D. in Education from the University of Maryland. She spent over 32 years with the St. Mary's County Public Schools. She began her teaching career as a classroom teacher, then a reading specialist. After serving as an elementary school principal for 11 years, she spent three years in central office as the Director of Instruction (K-12). She then became Superintendent of Schools in 1997 and served in this capacity for eight years.

Dr. Richardson has been active professionally and has served as Chairman of the Reading Task Force for the Maryland State Department of Education. Dr. Richardson was the first recipient of the Outstanding Leader in Education Award (2000) given by the College of Education at the University of Maryland, College Park. She received the Executive Educator Profiles in Excellence Award from the Executive Educator and The American School Board Journal and was named one of Maryland's Top 100 Women by the Daily Record.

Dr. Richardson served as the President of the State of Maryland International Reading Association Council and as President of the Public School Superintendents' Association of Maryland. She serves on the National Advisory Committee to redesign the School Leaders Licensure Assessment for the Educational Testing Service (ETS).

Mary Blakely

Mary Blakely is the education director for the University of Maryland/St. Mary's County Public Schools REAL project, an NICHD- funded, 5-year grant that is studying adolescent reading engagement and motivation. She serves as the liaison between the University of Maryland and St. Mary's County Public Schools, provides guidance and support to the teachers and administrators involved in the REAL project, and plays a significant role in our professional development workshops. She has a B.S. and M.S. in Education from the State University of New York at Fredonia. She holds additional certifications as a speech/language pathologist and as a special education teacher for K-12. She has worn many academic hats over the years including those as a school speech/language pathologist in New Milford Public Schools, Connecticut and in St. Mary's County Public Schools, Maryland. She served as an SMCPS principal for 11 years and was an adjunct Professor at the College of Southern Maryland teaching a Developmental Reading Course and a Developmental English course.

Jennifer McPeake

Jennifer McPeake is the curriculum director and professional development specialist for the Reading Engagement for Adolescent Learning (REAL) research project. She writes instructional guides and creates lesson plans and supporting instructional materials for St. Mary's County middle school teachers for implementation of Concept-Oriented Reading Instruction (CORI) for the REAL project. Jennifer provides in-classroom instructional support and coaching to teachers participating in the study. As the professional development specialist on the research team, Jennifer creates and presents professional development workshops to teachers on the underlying research principles and instructional practices of CORI, including Middle School Reading: Engagement and Achievement, Strategy Instruction for Information Text, Middle School Reading: Motivation and Engagement, and CORI2 Teacher's Guide Workshop.

Jennifer has been on the CORI research team since 2004. She created the CORI Teacher Training Module for Grades 3-5 and Grades 7-8. Jennifer provided professional development support for the pilot implementation of both modules in Queen Anne's County Public Schools. Prior to joining the CORI team Jennifer was a classroom teacher in Maryland and Virginia schools for 14 years and was a literacy professional developer for the Children's Literacy Initiative.

André Rupp

André Rupp is an assistant professor in the Department of Measurement, Statistics, and Evaluation at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is also affiliated with the Center for the Advanced Study of Languages (CASL). Before coming to Maryland, Dr. Rupp was a visiting professor at the Institute for Educational Progress at Humboldt-University in Berlin, Germany. He was also an assistant professor at the University of Ottawa, Ontario. He holds an M. A. in Teaching English as a Second Language and an M. S. in Mathematics, both from Northern Arizona University. Dr. Rupp received his Ph.D. in Measurement, Evaluation, and Research Methodology from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, British Columbia. Dr. Rupp's Item Response Theory (IRT) has given new insights into the structure of reading comprehension and motivation.

Postdoctoral research associate

Susan Lutz Klauda

Susan Lutz Klauda earned her B. A. in Neuroscience from Drew University in Madison, New Jersey in 2001 and her Ph.D. in Human Development from the University of Maryland, College Park in 2008. Currently she serves as the research manager for the REAL project. Her responsibilities include planning for data collection, constructing databases, conducting statistical analyses, and writing research reports. She has been part of the CORI research team since 2003. In broad terms, she is interested in the cognitive, motivational, and social dimensions of reading, and their interplay; more specifically, her dissertation examined elementary school children's perceived support for recreational reading from their mothers, fathers, and friends in relation to the children's reading motivation. Dr. Klauda's desire to study how children become skilled and avid readers arose largely from her experiences tutoring children in reading at the Kildonan School in Amenia, NY and working at her hometown public library in Metuchen, NJ. Prior to graduate school, she also worked as a research assistant at Princeton University, in both the Cutaneous Communication Laboratory and the Center for Arts and Cultural Policy Studies.

Graduate students

Cassandra Shular Coddington

Cassandra Shular Coddington is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Human Development at the University of Maryland and her advisor is Dr. John T. Guthrie. She is a graduate of Mercer University in Macon, Georgia where she double majored in Psychology and English. She worked as a graduate research assistant on the Reading Engagement project for three years, spent a year teaching undergraduate courses, and is currently involved with the REAL project. Her research interest is student motivation for reading and the impact of motivation on achievement. Her dissertation study entitled "Reading Motivations Inside and Outside of School that Affirm and Undermine Reading Achievement for Middle School Students," investigates the relationship between multiple constructs of motivation and achievement. One question of interest is how students' motivations differ for reading tasks they have to complete for school and reading tasks they complete for pleasure. Another question addressed in her dissertation is the relationship between motivations that help students accomplish reading tasks and motivations that hinder them.

Jenna Cambria

Jenna Cambria received her B. A. in Psychology from Rutgers University and is currently a graduate research assistant at the REAL lab. While pursuing her undergraduate degree, Jenna worked as an undergraduate research assistant at the Rutgers University Cognitive Development Lab with Dr. Alan Leslie. Upon graduation, she began to pursue her interest in child development and educational psychology working as a research assistant at the Yale Study of Children's After-school Time with Dr. Joseph Mahoney. She is currently a doctoral student in Human Development specializing in Educational Psychology working with Dr. Allan Wigfield. Her research interests include achievement motivation and goal attainment. Jenna's REAL work has consisted of writing two reading motivation measures, data analyses on these data from over 1200 students, interviewing students about their reading motivation, and creating a rubric to analyze these interviews. Jenna also has research interests outside the area of reading and will present her study on the relations between personality and motivation at AERA in 2009.

Danette Morrison

Danette Morrison received her B. S. in Psychology from Howard University in Washington, D.C. Originally from Kingston, Jamaica, she is presently a doctoral student in the Department of Human Development at the University of Maryland, College Park. She is working on data collection and analysis as a graduate assistant in Dr. John Guthrie's research lab where the research team is studying reading engagement and motivation. She is also studying peer relationships and academic outcomes with Dr. Kathryn Wentzel.

Youngmi Cho

Youngmi Cho is a doctoral student in the Department of Measurement, Statistics, and Evaluation at the University of Maryland. She received her B.A. in Psychology and M.A. in Psychometrics from Ewha Womans University in Seoul Korea. She has been a teaching assistant for Quantitative Research Methods, Applied Multiple Regression Analysis, and Multivariate Data Analysis. For the Spring 2009 semester, she is teaching Introduction to Educational Statistics. Youngmi is interested in integrating cognitive psychology, psychological modeling, and assessment. She has worked as a data analyst in the REAL project.

Amy Ho

Amy Ho received her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Psychology from California State University, Fullerton, where she worked as a research assistant on the Fullerton Longitudinal Study with Drs. Allen and Adele Gottfried, and Pamela Oliver. Her thesis investigated the relationships of parental involvement and children's academic achievement and motivation. She has also worked with Dr. Carol Dweck at Stanford University where she assisted in studies exploring the effects of children's beliefs of goodness and its relation to their reactions to task difficulties, helplessness, and motivation to persist; and whether stories of goodness can change children's self-theories. Amy is pursuing her Ph.D. in Human Development specializing in Developmental Science under the mentorship of Dr. Allan Wigfield. Her interests span topics relating to the developmental processes of children's academic motivation, including aspects of family and cultural influences.

Amanda Mason

Amanda Mason received her B.A. in Psychology and Sociology from Iowa Wesleyan College in Mt. Pleasant, IA and her M.S. in Developmental Psychology from Illinois State University in Normal, IL.  She also completed an internship as a policy analyst and research assistant for Rural Women New Zealand in Wellington, NZ, where she was an advocate and lead researcher on a project to expand early childhood education throughout New Zealand.  Amanda is currently a first-year doctoral student studying under Dr. Allan Wigfield in the Department of Human Development at the University of Maryland, College Park.  Amanda's research focus is academic achievement motivation; particularly how various environmental factors (i.e., parent-child attachment, culture, peer relationships), curricula, educational theory, and pedagogies (i.e., student-instructor relationships and teacher immediacy) affect motivation, knowledge acquisition, and long-term memory for academic details throughout the school years.  Amanda is currently working as a graduate research assistant on the REAL project and is developing rubrics to code student data from the last wave of data collection.

Angela McRae

Angela McRae is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Human Development at the University of Maryland, College Park. After completing a year of coursework at the University of the Virgin Islands, Angela graduated from Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic High School and went on to receive a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Boston College, and a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University in Elementary Education. Angela has taught reading, math, social studies, science, Spanish, and French at the 4ththrough 10thgrade levels and has taught reading acquisition to undergraduates at the University of Maryland. As a graduate assistant studying under Dr. John T. Guthrie, Angela has worked on both the Reading Engagement Project and the Reading Engagement for Adolescent Learning project in numerous capacities, including developing measures, writing lesson plans, gathering and analyzing data, and training teachers. Her dissertation research focuses on teacher and parent support for adolescent reading competence.

Wei You

Wei You is a doctoral student in the department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Maryland, College Park. She received her B. A. in English from Shanxi University, China and her master’s degree in British and American Literature from Nanjing University, China. She joined the REAL project in Jan 2010 and her REAL work consists of constructing the word recognition test for CORI-S, developing an observational rubric for the implementation of intervention in COIR-S, data collection, and data analysis. Her research interests include reading motivation and achievement, the relationship between reading engagement and reading comprehension, and measurement issues in reading research.

Katherine Muenks

Katherine Muenks received her B.S. in Psychology from Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. As an undergraduate she worked in a clinical psychology lab and completed an Honors Thesis. She also completed an internship in developmental psychology at Johns Hopkins University. Katie is a doctoral student in the Department of Human Development working under the mentorship of Dr. Allan Wigfield and specializing in Educational Psychology. Her broad research interest is in achievement motivation, and more specifically she is interested in students’ competence beliefs and social factors that affect learning and/or motivation. Katie is currently working as a graduate research assistant on the REAL project and is helping develop rubrics to code student data.

Administrative Assistant

Ellen M. Kaplan

Ellen M. Kaplan is the administrative assistant for the REAL project. She first worked for John Guthrie from 2001-2007 as a faculty research assistant, editing publications and books created during Dr. Guthrie's NSF research grant that studied reading engagement and motivation of elementary school children. She holds a B. S. in Education from Penn State University and a Master's equivalency from the University of Maryland, College Park. After a decade in the classroom teaching upper elementary grades and middle school literature, she has expanded her niche in the REAL project learning how to order computers and fix uncooperative printers.

REAL Undergraduates

Their fields of study are varied; their contributions to the REAL Project are singularly invaluable. They transcribed over 9000 pages of interviews, coded and entered data, and rated items for assessments.

  • Charles Chiang

    Charles Chiang

  • Rachel Goldman

    Rachel Goldman

  • Akhila Iruku

    Akhila Iruku
    Finance and Government & Politics

  • Danny Hong

    Danny Hong
    Mechanical Engineering

  • Vineet Khanna

    Vineet Khanna
    Finance and Operations Management

  • Ryan Olver

    Ryan Olver

  • Michael Price

    Michael Price
    Mechanical Engineering

  • Noelle Tom-Wigfield

    Noelle Tom-Wigfield
    Undeclared Major, College Park Scholar: Earth, Life, & Time

  • Dennis Wigfield

    Dennis Wigfield

Data Entry

Dominique J. Holmes

Dominique J. Holmes
B.S. in Psychology from Virginia Union University, 2007

REAL Interviewers

(Conducted student interviews Spring 2008)

Jack Hazuda

Jack Hazuda has a B. S. in Secondary Education from California University in California, Pennsylvania and an M. S. in Administration and Supervision from the University of Maryland, College Park. After several years of classroom teaching, Mr. Hazuda served as an elementary school principal for over 35 years in St. Mary's County Public Schools and was a principal supervisor on the elementary and middle school levels. His expertise and familiarity with our student population enabled him to conduct effective and meaningful student interviews.

Rudell Jones

Rudell Jones received his B. S. in Elementary Education from Bowie State College (presently Bowie State University) in 1977 and his M. E. in Supervision and Administration in 1984. He received Advanced Professional Certification from the Maryland State Department of Education for grades one through six and middle school. He is currently a retired teacher and principal from St. Mary's County Maryland Public Schools.

Rhokey Millham

Deanna Nored

Deanna Nored is a retired educator with 35 years of educational experience in the St. Mary's County Public School system. She received her B. A. from Morgan State University with an English-Speech major and was awarded a master's degree in reading from the University of Maryland. She began her teaching experiences as a high school English teacher, but her experiences include middle school reading and language arts and position as a reading specialist. Deanna also served as coordinator for competency testing, a collaborative position with the Maryland State Department of Education. She has been a coordinator and supervisor for English, reading, writing, and foreign languages. As a part of her role within the school system she was also responsible for coordinating and presenting extensive professional development activities for reading, writing, assessment, closing the achievement gap, and strategic planning.

Tina Watts

Tina Watts is a retired teacher in St. Mary's County, Maryland. After earning a Bachelor's degree in English at Appalachian State University, she taught four years at the secondary level before becoming enthralled with how children learn to read. Encouraged to delve deeper, she extended her credentials through the University of Maryland to include teaching at the early childhood/elementary level, as well as completing an M. E. in Administration and Supervision. She worked for 27 years in St. Mary's County Public Schools, teaching grades PK - 5, as well as serving as an instructional resource teacher and as an assistant principal.