Examining Interactions Between On-Line and Off-Line Explanation Strategies in Science Comprehension

Spencer Foundation: Grant #201900217

PI: Kathryn McCarthy (GSU)

Co-PI: Scott Hinze (MGA)

Examining Students’ Disciplinary Knowledge: Making Comprehension Strategies Visible
APA Division 15 Early Career Research Grant
PI: Kathryn McCarthy (GSU)

Developing a Deeper Understanding of Cognitive Processes Driving Multiple Document Comprehension
IES Grant R305A180144
PI: Danielle McNamara (ASU)

Co-PIs: Laura Allen (UNH), Joe Magliano (GSU), Kathryn McCarthy (GSU)

Using Computational Linguistics to Detect Comprehension Processes in Constructed Responses across Multiple Large Data Sets

IES Grant R305A190063

PI: Danielle McNamara (ASU)

Co-PIs: Laura Allen (UNH), Joe Magliano (GSU), Kathryn McCarthy (GSU), Holly O'Rourke (ASU)

Developing Materials to Explore the Nature of Comprehension Challenges in Adults with Low Literacy Skills
Research on the Challenges of Acquiring Language & Literacy (RCALL) Seed Grant
PI: Joe Magliano (GSU)
Co-PI: Katie McCarthy (GSU)


Literacy Across Disciplines​

APA Div 15 Early Career Research Grant​

Different disciplines or domains have different expectations for how to interact with text and materials. This project examines what students might implicitly know about different disciplines to help them recognize when to deploy discipline-specific comprehension strategies.

Combining Online and Offline Comprehension Strategies 

Spencer Foundation Grant: #201900217

Students often select ineffective study strategies or they implement them in non-optimal ways. This work brings together the research on strategies that improve learning during reading (online) and those that improve learning after reading (offline) to explore their potentially additive or interactive effects.

Effects of Different Types of Background Knowledge

We are collaborating with Educational Testing Services (ETS), to study how different kinds of prior knowledge (e.g. basic or conceptual, domain-general or topic-specific,  academic or non-academic)  can help or harm middle and high school students' comprehension in a variety of topics and domains. We are also exploring how these kinds of background knowledge interact with features of the text or task. 

Technology-Enhanced Learning

Recent advances in natural language processing (NLP) have allowed researchers and educators to provide immediate, individualized feedback for reading and writing skills.


Our research explores the development, implementation, and evaluation of new features in educational technologies that offer a more engaging and effective adaptive learning environment. 

Supporting Successful Literary Reading

Students often struggle to engage the same types of interpretive behaviors as literary experts do. This work focuses on understanding how and under what conditions readers generate interpretive inferences as well as the design of interventions that can help students develop interpretive reading skills and strategies. 

Improving Civic Literacy

In collaboration with GSU's Adult Literacy Research Center, we are exploring how readers of varying skill understand texts about legislation and to improve supports and policies related to civic literacy.

Learning Across Multiple Texts

IES Grant: R305A180144

Reading in the 21st century often involves the need to read and learn from multiple texts. This is challenging for students to master. This project is a collaboration with Arizona State University and Mississippi State University that uses verbal protocols, eyetracking, and telemetry data to investigate how different reading strategies (self-explanation, source evaluation) affect comprehension when information is spread across multiple documents.

Computational Methods

IES Grant: R305A190063

With colleagues from computer science, psychology, and linguistics, we use natural language processing, machine learning, and dynamical systems theory to understand how comprehension unfolds during reading.

Adult Literacy 

RCALL Seed Grant

Nearly 1 in 6 adults in the US struggle with literacy.  In this work, we are exploring how adult literacy learners (adults who read at a 3rd - 8th grade reading level) process both text-based and visual narratives. This series of studies will help us better to deliver more effective support for struggling adult readers.

Campus Address:

30 Pryor St SW, Atlanta, GA 30303

Mailing Address:

College of Education & Human Development

P.O. Box 3978, Atlanta, GA 30302

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© 2019 K. McCarthy

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