EPET student wins doctoral fellowship for research on online reading

May 26, 2011

Michelle Schira Hagerman, a doctoral student in the Educational Psychology and Educational Technology program at MSU, has received a $20,000 award to support her dissertation research on online reading comprehension.

The one year fellowship, which runs from September 2011 to September 2012, comes from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

Originally from Waterford, Ontario, Hagerman is a former French language and literature teacher who became interested in further exploring how adolescents interact with technology, and how those experiences influence their academic and cognitive development.

Her current research is focused on understanding how teenagers develop online reading comprehension skills. She plans to study a control group of students that receives no instructional support compared to a group that receives different kinds of instructional support while engaging in the same tasks during the same time period.

Hagerman notes there is an emerging view that online reading comprehension processes require extra skills and mindsets, but it is less clear (a) how these skills and mindsets develop over time and (b) what pedagogical approaches may support the development of these skills.

“There is a real need for empirical work that establishes a baseline understanding of what online reading comprehension processes look like and how teens, whose cognitive abilities are changing, engage with the complexities of online reading comprehension tasks for academic purposes,” she said.

Her advisor is Douglas Hartman.

Read more about the SSHRC Doctoral Awards.