Convener of the Language for Learning Research Group
Paola Uccelli is Associate Professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. With a background in linguistics, she studies socio-cultural and individual differences in students' language and literacy development throughout the school years. Her research in educational and developmental linguistics has identified a set of school-relevant language skills that are predictive of advanced literacy and academic achievement, not only for second language learners but also for monolingual students. Her current projects focus on describing individual trajectories of school-relevant language development; on the design and validation of a research instrument to assess school-relevant language skills in elementary and middle school students; and on understanding how monolingual and multilingual speakers and writers learn to use a variety of discourse structures flexibly and effectively for diverse communicative and learning purposes. Paola studied linguistics at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú and subsequently earned her doctoral degree in Human Development and Psychology at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Her postdoctoral work focused on reading comprehension research and was conducted in collaboration with the Center for Applied Linguistics, and the Center for Applied Special Technology as part of two projects funded by the Institute of Education Sciences. Her research has been supported also by the Spencer Foundation, the Milton Grant from Harvard University, and currently by the Institute of Education Sciences. Being a native of Peru, Paola is also interested in Latin America where she collaborates with local researchers and often participates in research conferences and workshops.