IES Awards Professor Al Otaiba with $1.6 Million Grant

IMG_0057Simmons Professor Stephanie Al Otaiba (principal investigator) and her colleagues in the Department of Teaching and Learning, Jill Allor and Paul Yovanoff, and Akihito Kamata, director of the Center for Research and Evaluation, have received a $1.6 million federal grant to study reading interventions.

The grant comes from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) and explores the relationship between schools’ Response to Intervention (RTI) implementation and teachers’ RTI knowledge and student outcomes.

Associate Dean Hernandez Offers Insights on Developing Latino Superintendents

Hernandez_684Associate Dean Frank Hernandez provided his expertise on Latinos and school leadership for KERA radio’s story on Latino superintendents in Texas.

Eight of Texas’ largest cities have Latinos leading public schools. Hernandez believes the creation of superintendent leadership academies can lead to the development of more Latinos.

The story is part of a statewide public radio series on education.

Denisa Gándara Elected to Higher Education Board

gandara_denisaAssistant Professor Denisa Gándara is a new member-at-large board representative for the Council for Public Policy in Higher Education. The council is part of the Association For The Study of Higher Education, and its purpose is “to promote research on, and to advance understanding of, the processes and impacts of public policy in U.S. higher education, as well as to help inform decision making in the public policy arena.”

Gándara joined the Department of Education Policy and Leadership in 2015.

New Study Looks At Brain Blood Flow For Potential Diagnosis of Concussions

Simmons Faculty and Staff PortraitsAssistant Professor Sushmita Purkayastha, Dept. of Applied Physiology and Wellness, is part of a research team conducting a new study to find indicators that can  diagnose whether an athlete has suffered a concussion.

Purkayastha is using transcranial Doppler ultrasound to examine college athletes and measure blood vessel function in the brain, looking for tell-tale signs related to blood flow that help diagnose concussion.

She is collaborating with the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Department at UT Southwestern in a pilot study funded by Texas Institute for Brain Injury and Repair. Read more.

Brian Fennig Rates High with Students

FennigBFor a second year in a row, Wellness professor Brian Fennig, receives a top national ranking by students in Rate My Professors, an online site. He is no. 4 on the Highest Rated University Professors of 2015-16   list . Students voting for him describe him as inspirational and respected. Congratulations to him!