About the Collaborative on Early Adolescence (CEA)


Katharina Barbe, Ph.D.
Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures
Associate Professor; Acting Assistant Chair Foreign Language & Literature
120 Watson Hall

Marilyn Bellert
General Administration
Executive Assistant to VP of  Outreach and University Administration

Felicia Bohanon
Office of Precollegiate Programs

Interests: Urban Education, Community/School Collaborations, Program Evaluation, K-12/Higher Education Collaborations, TRIO and College Readiness

Chris Carger, Ph.D.
Department of Literacy Education
Graham Hall 331

Interests: Research interests include narrative inquiry, ethnography, and action research in diverse classrooms. Particular interest in research using multicultural children’s literature across the curriculum and literature preferences of young bilingual readers.

Aline Click
NIU Outreach eLearning
Assistant Director 
LB 200

Interests: American Bar Association (ABA), Blogging, Certified Trade Show Marketers (CTSM), Critical Choices, e-Colorado, Gaming, GIS Certificate, HECA, Homeland Security Certificate, Human Resource Training, Medical Laboratory Assistants (MLO), NIU View, Online Education, Podcasting, Project REAL, Second Life, Sharepoint, Social Networks, Virtual Environments

Website: http://www.learn.niu.edu

Glenda Cosenza, Ph.D.
School of Music
Associate Professor
1425 W. Lincoln Hwy.

Interests: Research interests include studying the impact of music and other fine arts on urban school children's acquisition of language arts skills; how pre-service music educators become reflective learners and teachers; and developing and testing curricula in which popular music forms are integrated into traditional music classrooms in grades K-8.

Mayra C. Daniel, Ph.D.
Department of Literacy Education
Associate Professor
Graham Hall 331

Interests: Work focuses on preparing teachers who work with English language learners /bilinguals-in-the-making at levels K-12. Teach Multicultural Education Methods and Materials, Bilingualism and Reading, TESOL Methods, Assessment of English Language Learners, and the Capstone Seminar which is a course that asks teachers to integrate and synthesize the concepts, principles, trends, and issues in literacy education for English language learners.

Anne Davidson
School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders
Speech-Language Pathology
Director, Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic

Interests: Treatment efficacy in child language disorders and autistic spectrum disorder.

Michelle K. Demaray, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology
Associate Professor

Interests:  Conduct research in the several areas related to early adolescence that include social support and bullying and victimization in the schools.  Work in social support is related to measuring the construct and investigating the relationship among social support from important people in adolescents' lives (e.g., parents, teachers, peers, close friends) and academic, social, and behavioral outcomes.  Research in the area of bullying and victimization, specifically investigating how social support might serve as a buffer against the negative outcomes of victimization. 

Linda E. Derscheid, Ph.D.
School of Family, Consumer, & Nutrition Sciences
Family & Child Studies
FCNS Graduate Faculty Chair & Associate Professor
Wirtz 118

Interests:  Always considering the family context and parenting concerns, am interested in early adolescents’ body image and how this may lead to eating disorders in adolescence. Also interested in the impact of media and technology on early adolescents’ academic performance, social relationships/social development, and body image/self-esteem for identity development.

Portia Downey
Project Manager, TQE Grant Partnership
GA 155 

Laurie Elish-Piper, Ph.D.
Literacy Education
Professor; Director, Literacy Clinic

Interests: Dr. Elish-Piper teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in elementary reading, literacy assessment, adult literacy, and literacy research.  Her research interests include the effects of literacy coaching on student reading achievement, family literacy, adult literacy, developing home-school connections related to literacy, and literacy teacher education. 

Shi-Ruei Sherry Fang, Ph.D.
Family and Child Studies
WZ 156

William C. Johnson, Ph.D.
Department of English
Sigma Tau Delta, Int'l English Honor Society
Executive Director

Interests:  Academic interests are primarily at the tertiary level, a strong personal interest is in how young adults develop insofar as their own interests and accomplishments in language arts are stimulated and acknowledged. To that end, as part of the work with a large collegiate honor society, have developed the National English Honor Society (NEHS), exclusively for high school students and teachers.

Websites:  www.nehs.us

Mary S. Larson, Ph.D.
Department of Communication
Watson Hall 217

Interests:  Research and teaching interests have focused on the impact of "screens" on children and adolescence--e.g., television, film, video games, game boys. Many years of experience have resulted in a book for parents, "Watch It! What Parents Need to Know to Raise Media-Smart Kids," which has come out this summer, published by Rainbow Books, Inc.  Address groups of parents, educators, etc. on topics such as kids and consumerism, kids and the hazards of the internet, the media and how they contribute to kids' norms for social behavior, including sexual and courtship norms, living in families, etc.

Website:  www.maryslarson.com

Christine Malecki, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology
Director, School Psychology Program
ASPIRE-North Outreach Supervisor
Associate Professor

Interests:  Have consulted with school districts throughout the northern region of Illinois for 10 years on data-based instructional decision-making in the schools. Work in this area includes research on response to intervention, curriculum-based measurement, and improving instruction, curriculum, and the instructional environment to be as efficient and effective as possible in meeting ALL students’ needs.  Research in area of social support and bullying behavior, with most published work focused on students in middle school.

Websites:   http://www.niu.edu/psyc/faculty/malecki.shtml

Kathryn Maley
History Department
History Social Sciences Teacher Certification Program Advisor
815 753-5903
ZH 626

Interests:  Migrant Ministry and the efforts to educate migrant laborers and their children at the local, state, and national levels from 1950-1980.  This topic combines issues of religion, education, gender, and labor in an important, an often overlooked, portion of the Civil Rights Movement.  Additional research interests include the constitutional issues and implications surrounding the separation of church and state as applied to Illinois' public education system and Genocide and Human Rights education and curriculum. Teaching interests stem from previous experience with middle school and high school public education.  Particular interest in the differences in philosophy, methodology, and curriculum between middle schools and high schools and how best to prepare pre-service teachers to excel in each setting.

Elise Frank Masur, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology
Developmental Psychology and School Psychology

Interests:  Include the acquisition and development of cognitive, language, and communication skills in infants and preschool-aged children within the context of parent-child interaction; social and cognitive prerequisites for language acquisition; mother-child interaction; mother-child imitation; school psychology.

J. Elizabeth Miller, Ph.D.
Family and Child Studies
School of Family, Consumer, and Nutrition Sciences
Associate Professor

Michael Morris, Ph.D.
Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures
Associate Professor; Coordinator, Foreign Language Teacher Development
118 Watson Hall
DeKalb, IL 60115

Interests:  Focus on the analysis of foreign language teachers’ beliefs regarding instruction and the relationship of these beliefs to their classroom practices, as well as foreign language program assessment. Currently working on a project that examines boys’ levels of achievement in foreign language classrooms in Northern Illinois as part of the Project REAL collaboration between NIU and the Rockford Public Schools. Collaborator on the 5th edition of the McGraw-Hill Spanish text Pasajes.  Part of an author team working on a new first-year text for McGraw-Hill. Have presented research to language teachers in this country and abroad, including recent presentations in Australia and Spain. Active in assisting language teachers in Northern Illinois and have given many in-service presentations in regional schools. As a former elementary school foreign language teacher, interest in teaching foreign languages at the elementary and middle school level.  Co-coordinator of the Chesebro Elementary School after-school foreign language program in DeKalb, which provides instruction in French, German, and Spanish to the young people of Chesebro through the FLMT 490 (elementary school foreign language methods) course.

Richard Orem, Ed.D.
Department of Counseling, Adult and Higher Education
GA 147C

Sue Ouellette, Ph.D.
School of Allied Health & Communicative Disorders
Professor; Chair
WZ 323A

Interests: Dr. Ouellette is interested in research related to working with families who have one or more members with a communicative disorders and in general mental health issues related to persons who are deaf or hard of hearing. She is particularly interested in the interface between the fields of family therapy and Communicative Disorders and in how the study of this interrelationship can guide our understanding of counseling in Communicative Disorders. Dr. Ouellette also retains an interest in research related to removing barriers to accessing health care for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Debra A. Pender, Ph.D., LCPC, NCC, ACS
Department of Counseling, Adult and Higher Education
Assistant Professor
Graham Hall 416 E

Interests: To develop curriculum in evidence informed practices for the treatment of children and adolescents in the care of grant funded agencies in IL (Project Educare) through grant funding from the IL division of Mental Health, child and Adolescent Unit.  Currently developing an eLearning system for clinicians working in these agencies.

Suma Rajashankar, Ph.D.
Electrical Engineering
Visiting Assistant Professor
EB 106

Interests: Growth and characterization of compound semiconductors, Nanoscale material processing and characterization, Deep defect studies in semiconductors, Device design and modelling, Advancement of Women in Engineering, Engineering Education.

Pat Reisdorf
Mathematical Sciences
Teacher Certification Coordinator
Watson 372

Susan Russell, Ph.D.
Department of Anthropology

Interests:  Have been project director since 2003 on of a number of international grants from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, U.S. Department of State.  These grants involve bringing Christian, Muslim and indigenous youth from the war-torn southern Philippines to NIU for three to five week training programs focused on civic participation, volunteerism, conflict resolution, interfaith and inter-ethnic dialogue, and community service.  Since 2003 have trained 174 youth, aged 15-17, and young adults through these programs, which also involve considerable interaction with American youth in high schools in the northern Illinois region. 

Website:  http://www.cseas.niu.edu/PhilAccess/default.htm

David Shernoff, Ph.D.
Department of Leadership, Educational Psychology, and Foundations
Associate Professor

Interests: I am interested in educational contexts supportive of human development. Specific areas of research focus include motivation and engagement of youth and adolescents (both in school and in after-school contexts), mentoring, early career development, and positive youth development.

Website:    http://www.cedu.niu.edu/~shernoff/

Patricia Sievert 
General Administration
STEM Outreach Coordinator
LB 200

Sharon Smaldino, Ph.D.
Educational Technology, Research and Assessment
Professor; Ruth G Morgridge Endowed Chair for Teaching Education Partnership Office
GA 155C 

Harvey Smith, Ph.D.
Department of History
Associate Professor; Director, Interactive Illinois Report Card
ZH 720

Alan Zollman, Ph.D.
Department of Mathematical Sciences
Associate Professor
Watson Hall 352 

Website: http://www.math.niu.edu/~zollman