Annemarie Sullivan Palincsar

Chair, Educational Studies; Ann L. Brown Distinguished University Professor; Arthur F Thurnau Professor; Jean and Charles R. Walgreen Jr. Professor of Reading and Literacy


Room 4220 A
Mailbox 4215/4218
610 E. University Ave.
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Palincsar is the Jean and Charles Walgreen Jr. Chair of Reading and Literacy, Ann L. Brown Distinguished University Professor, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, and a teacher educator at the University of Michigan. She is an instructional researcher who studies teaching and learning in K-8 classrooms, typically collaborating closely with classroom teachers.

Currently, Palincsar's primary research interest is in supporting students to learn how to engage in knowledge building with informational text, especially in the context of project-based scientific inquiry. With her research group--and in collaboration with computer engineer Elliot Soloway--she has designed and studied the use of a cyber-learning environment in which students collaborate as they read texts, view video, use simulations, write, and draw, while engaging in scientific inquiry. She recently received funding from the Lucas Educational Research Fund to develop and study the use of project-based learning in the upper elementary grades. With science educator Betsy Davis and the ELECTS team, she recently conducted a series of studies investigating the value of educative supports for science teaching in the upper elementary grades. With linguist Mary Schleppegrell and the Language and Meaning research group, she used design-based research to investigate the process and outcomes of teaching English learners the use of functional grammar analysis as a means of supporting them to interpret and learn from narrative and informational text. Palincsar has served as a member of: the National Academy’s Research Council on the Prevention of Reading Difficulty in Young Children, the OERI/RAND Reading Study Group, the National Research Council’s Panel on Teacher Preparation, The International Reading Association’s Literacy Research Panel and the National Advisory Board to Children's Television Workshop. She was co-editor of the journal Cognition and Instruction and is a member of the National Academy of Education. She was recently appointed to the study group for the preparation of How People Learn, volume 2.  



Number Course Name Location Days
EDUC 501
Literacy Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment: Primary / Elementary

Focuses on the child in her or his own varying life contexts, including home, school, clinic, and community. Studies the ways individual children who are experiencing literacy problems understand and express their knowledge of literacy within and across these contexts. Uses this portfolio of information in the design of effective interventions and assessments for young children in their classrooms.

EDUC 500
Foundations of Literacy

Prerequisites: Graduate standing.

Provides key theoretical underpinnings to research and instruction in literacy. Investigates current theories of reading/literacy and their historical roots as well as current trends in practice. Ties these trends in practice to the question: “What is typical and atypical development and how does context affect judgments about typicality and atypically?”

EDUC 403
Individualizing Reading and Writing Instruction in the Elementary Classroom

Explores techniques for assessment of reading and writing skills and for development of individualized instruction in classroom settings; develops strategies for meeting the needs of individual students through the evaluation, utilization, and adaptation of commercial reading materials and through the formation of principles and techniques for producing effective teacher-prepared materials.

Room 2229


Selected Publications

"Locating struggling readers in a reconfigured landscape: A conceptual review." 

Kucan, L. and Palincsar, A. S. (in press). To appear in M. Kamil, D. Pearson, P. Afflerbach, and E. Moje (Eds.), The Handbook of Reading Research (fifth edition). To be published by Taylor Francis.

"Teachers’ Specialized Knowledge for Supporting Student Comprehension in Text-Based Discussions."

Kucan, L., Hapgood, S. and Palincsar, A. S. (in press). To appear in Elementary School Journal.

"The Video Viewing Task: A Source of Information for Assessing and Addressing Teacher Understanding of Text-Based Discussion." 

Kucan, L., Palincsar, A. S., Khasnabis, D., and Chang, C. (2009). Teaching and Teacher Education, 25, 415-423.

"The role of research, theory, and representation in the transformation of instructional research." 

Palincsar, A. S. (2007). National Reading Conference Yearbook, vol. 67, 41-52.

“Informed choices for struggling adolescent readers: A research based guide to principles and practices.”

Deshler, D., Palincsar, A. S., Biancarosa, G., and Naire, M. (2007). Newark, Delaware: International Reading Association.

"Research to practice: Designing hypermedia environment to support elementary teachers’ learning of robust comprehension instruction."

Palincsar, A. S., Spiro, R..J., Kucan, L., Magnusson, S. J., Collins, B., Hapgood, S., Ramchandran, A., and DeFrance, N. (2007). In D. McNamara (Ed.). Reading Strategies Handbook. Taylor Francis.

"Examining 'Expert Guidance' in the Context of Inquiry-based Science Teaching: Applying Lenses that Ann Brown Honed to the Study of Teachers’ Practice."

Palincsar, A. S., Hapgood, S., and Magnusson, S. J. (2007). To appear in J. C. Campione, K. Metz, and A. S. Palincsar (Eds.), Children's learning in the laboratory and in the classroom: Essays in honor of Ann Brown. Routledge.

"Literacy and the learning sciences."

Palincsar, A. S. and Ladewski, B. (2006). In K. Sawyer (Ed.), Handbook of the Learning Sciences (pp. 299-317). New York: Cambridge University Press.


November 16, 2019
The goal of this research is to investigate how project-based science instruction provides a context in which students can acquire and advance their knowledge and skills in oral and written language as they pursue questions that engage the students in developing their understanding of important scientific concepts.


Award Start Date
Jan 01, 2015
Award End Date
Dec 01, 2020
Award Start Date
Jan 12, 2011
Award End Date
Nov 01, 2011
Award Start Date
Jan 01, 2008
Award End Date
Dec 31, 2011
Award Start Date
Jul 01, 2006
Award End Date
Jan 01, 2012
Award Start Date
Feb 01, 2003
Award End Date
Dec 31, 2005