Screen_shot_2010-10-08_at_9.22.57_AM.png**Dr. Hiller Spires**,is a Professor of Literacy and Technology in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction; she received her Ph.D. in literacy education from the University of South Carolina. She served as the founding director of The William and Ida Friday Institute for Educational Innovationfrom 2002-2006 and currently serves as FI Senior Research Fellow. Her research focuses on the effects of digital literacies on learning, including emerging literacies associated with gaming environments. She is co-PI on the NSF-funded projects, Crystal Islandand Narrative Theatre. She has published in Journal of Educational Psychology, Cognition & Instruction, Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, Literacy Research & Instruction, Reading Psychology, among other journals. She coordinates the New Literacies & Global Learning graduate program and co-directs the Friday Institute’s New Literacies Collaborative. Check out her website.

Dr. John K. Lee, is an associate professor of social studies and middle grades education. He conducts research on digital history, and is specifically interested in the development of innovative ways for supporting teachers and students as they make use of online historical resources. He is author of the book Visualizing Elementary Social Studies Methods and co-author of the book Guiding Learning with Technology. He is also involved in efforts to theorize and develop tools and materials related to new literacies. For more see

Young2011.jpgCarl A. Young, a former middle grades and high school English teacher, is associate professor of English education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at North Carolina State University. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. At NC State, he teaches courses in English methods, teaching composition, content area reading and writing, and new literacies and emerging technologies. He conducts research on new literacies, participatory media, eportfolios, and other technology applications in English education. In addition, Dr. Young serves as chair of the CEE Commission on Technology and Teacher Education and as co-editor for the English language arts section of Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education (// He is a member of the New Literacies Collaborative ( and co-facilitator for the annual New Literacies Teacher Leader Institute (, a summer professional development initiative. Selected publications have appeared in English Education, English Journal, Journal of Literacy Research, and Learning & Leading with Technology. He is currently co-editing a book highlighting research in technology and English education.

leu_don.jpgDr. Donald J. Leu will provide a keynote talk on Tuesday morning. Don is the John and Maria Neag Endowed Chair in Literacy and Technology and holds a joint appointment in Curriculum and Instruction and Educational Psychology at the University of Connecticut. He directs the New Literacies Research Lab at the University of Connecticut is a member of the Board of Directors of the International Reading Association and the Reading Hall of Fame. He is a past President of the National Reading Conference. A graduate of Michigan State, Harvard, and Berkeley, Don’s work focuses on the new skills and strategies required to read, write, and learn with Internet technologies and the best instructional practices that prepare students for these new literacies. He has more than 100 research publications and seventeen books on topics that range from phonics and phonemic awareness to teacher education and the new literacies of online reading comprehension.

Juliephoto.jpgDr. Julie Coiro will be a facilitator for the Online Reading Comprehension area of the Digging Deeper Breakouts. She began her teaching career as a special education teacher after graduating from the University of Connecticut. She received her Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction with a focus in Reading from the University of New Orleans. Upon returning to Connecticut, Julie worked as a technology specialist at LEARN, a regional educational agency, before pursuing her doctorate in Educational Psychology at the University of Connecticut. Currently, Julie is an Assistant Professor in the School of Education at the University of Rhode Island. Among her research interests are strategic reading comprehension instruction, new literacies of the Internet, online reading comprehension, and effective practices for technology integration, assessment, and professional development. Selected publications have appeared in Reading Research Quarterly, The Reading Teacher, and Educational Leadership. Julie is also co-editor of The Handbook of Research on New Literacies (Erlbaum, 2008).

Erin_2011.PNGErin Lyjak is a research associate at the Friday Institute for Educational Innovation, working on the New Literacies Collaborative project. She received her Master's degree in Experimental Psychology from Radford University. Erin has been in the field of educational research for over 10 years. Prior to joining The New Literacies team, she worked on a wide range of educational studies, including school violence prevention, standardized testing, PISA , and chancellor reviews.