Katherine Davis Murfree - Chair of Excellence in Dyslexic Studies
The Katherine Davis Murfree Chair of Excellence in Dyslexic Studies, a professorship
in the College of Education at Middle Tennessee State University, was established
in 1989 for the purpose of:
- Building public awareness about the nature of dyslexia and about promising approaches
to diagnosis and intervention.
- Enhancing the skills of teachers, school psychologists, and parents to more effectively
identify and assist dyslexic students.
- Contributing to the research base regarding causes and educational interventions.
In 1999, Dyslexic Studies became a Departmental unit within the College of Education.
Dr. Diane Sawyer served as its chair until her retirement in May 2010. A search is
currently underway to fill the position.
Dyslexic Studies at MTSU offers courses to increase knowledge and awareness of dyslexia.
Content is significantly rooted in the research base that defines dyslexia, guides
identification, and informs the content and strategies for effective instruction.
The courses provide real answers to real questions:
- Why do some struggling readers fail to respond to interventions?
- What is dyslexia? Is it purely a specific reading disability, or is it also linked
to language disabilities and processing deficits?
- How are reading disabilities in general and dyslexia in particular identified? How
will this process change as schools move from an IQ-achievement discrepancy model
to a 3-tier model under the Response to Intervention (RTI) approach?
- After a reading disability has been identified, how can curriculum-based measurements
track the reading progress of children?
- What instructional approaches have been scientifically shown as effective for struggling
readers, and children with dyslexia? What are multisensory strategies?
- What is differentiated instruction and what does scientific research indicate about
how instruction should be modified when children fail to show adequate progress?
- How does dyslexia affect classroom organization? That is, how can quality instruction
for struggling readers be delivered in a regular classroom through small groups, paired
instruction, independent work and one-on-one instruction?
For more information about the Murfree Chair of Excellence or the Dyslexic Studies
courses, please contact Sharon Farmer, Executive Aide:
Phone: (615) 898-5642
Fax: (615) 898-5694