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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
October 17, 2017
Canadian Excellence
Dr. Alexandra Gottardo

Dr. Alexandra Gottardo

Professor, Psychology

Contact Information
Phone: (519) 884-0710 ext.2169

Office Location: N2075C (Science Building)
Office Hours: Wednesdays 12:30-1:20pm; Fridays 10:00-11:00am, Or By Appointment
Academic Background

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Ph.D. Educational Psychology, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of University of Toronto

M.H.Sc. Speech-language pathology, University of Toronto

B.A.Sc. Child Studies, University of Guelph

My research interests involve examining the links between oral and written language in a wide range of groups. Primary interests include examining relationships between phonological processing and word reading in diverse learners including English as a second language (ESL) learners, beginning readers and children with reading difficulties. Other interests include factors related to reading comprehension in ESL learners and poor readers, and vocabulary development in ESL learners. I am also interested in literacy intervention programs for at-risk children.

On-going research projects

The main focus of the research in my lab is on reading in English as a Second Language learners. We are conducting studies examining longitudinal development of reading in ESL learners ages 5 to 10, developing models of reading in adolescent second language learners and tracking vocabulary development in late elementary ESL students. We are also conducting training studies with preschool ESL children, at-risk preschoolers, early elementary students and adolescents who are ESL learners. One unique feature of our ESL research is that in many studies we test students in their first language from a variety of language backgrounds: Spanish, Chinese (Mandarin & Cantonese), Portuguese and Farsi. Finally, we are conducting research on how early reading preferences are related to the development of reading skills.

Representative publications:

Gottardo, A. & Mueller, J. (2009). Are first and second language factors related in predicting L2 reading comprehension? A study of Spanish-speaking children acquiring English as a second language from first to second grade. Journal of Educational Psychology , 101, 330-344.

Gottardo, A., Collins, P., Baciu, I., & Gebotys, R. (2008). Predictors of Grade 2 word reading, listening comprehension and reading comprehension from Grade 1 variables in Spanish-speaking children: Similarities and differences. Learning Disabilities: Research and Practice . 23, 11-24.

Geva, E., Gottardo, A., Farnia, F., & Byrd Clark, J. (2009). National Literacy Strategy Background/Policy Paper: Children for whom English/French is not their first language. Commissioned by Canadian Language and Literacy Research Network (CLLRNet) . NSEL / Current/NSEL_FirstLanguage.pdf

Lafrance A. & Gottardo, A. (2005). A longitudinal study of phonological processing skills and reading in bilingual children. Applied Psycholinguistics , 26, 559-578.

Gottardo, A. (2002). Language and reading skills in bilingual Spanish-English speakers. Topics in Language Disorders , 23, 42-66.

Chiappe (Collins), P., Siegel, L.S., & Gottardo, A. (2002). Reading-related skills of kindergartners from diverse linguistic backgrounds. Applied Psycholinguistics , 23, 95-116

Gottardo, A., Yan, B., Siegel, L.S., & Wade-Woolley, L. (2001). Factors related to English reading performance in children with Chinese as a first language: More evidence of cross-language transfer of phonological processing. Journal of Educational Psychology , 93, 530-542.

Gottardo, A., Stanovich, K.E., & Siegel, L.S. (1996). The relationships between phonological sensitivity, syntactic processing and verbal working memory in the reading performance of third-grade children. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology , 63, 563-582.

Other Reviewed Publications
On-line encyclopedia entries

Gottardo, A. & Grant A. (2008). Assessment of reading acquisition in bilinguals.

Gottardo, A. & Grant A. (2008). Defining bilingualism.