University of Connecticut

Who We Are

Preparing Students, Teachers, and School Leadership Teams for the New Literacies of the Internet and other ICTs 

The New Literacies Research Lab at the University of Connecticut is the most widely recognized center in the world for conducting research on new literacies, including the new literacies of online research and comprehension and the learning skills required by the Internet and other emerging information and communication technologies. Our work develops research-based evidence to prepare students for their literacy and learning future.

Through our research, we provide answers to two central questions:

  1. What are the new skills, strategies, and dispositions required for both literacy and online learning, especially with the new literacies of online research and comprehension?
  2. How can we most effectively prepare our youth for these new literacies?

Our work has received funding for research, professional development, assessment, and curriculum development in excess of $10,000,000. Funding has been generously provided by Ray and Carole Neag, the U.S. Department of Education, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Defense, the North Central Educational Research Lab, the Carnegie Corporation, the Institute for Education Sciences, PBS and the Annenberg Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Australian Council of Educational Research, and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

The research conducted at our center is widely sought after and highly respected for its quality and for the exploration of issues that are essential to the development of more effective educational systems. Our research has appeared in the most prestigious venues in educational research: Reading Research Quarterly, the Journal of Educational Psychology, the Journal of Literacy Research, Theoretical Models and Processes of Reading, the Handbook of Reading Research, the Handbook of Writing Research, the Handbook of Individual Differences in Reading, the Handbook of Research on Reading Comprehension, the Handbook of Research on New Literacies, the Handbook of Literacy and Technology, and many other top-tier research publications.

The lab is directed by Professor Donald J. Leu, editor of the Handbook of Research on New Literacies (Erlbaum), a past President of the National Reading Conference, the author of two major school reading/English programs, a member of the Governing Board of the New England and Islands Educational Research Lab, a former member of the Board of Directors of the International Reading Association, and a member of the Reading Hall of Fame. Our research team includes graduate students and graduates, faculty in top universities around the world, and an extended set of partner organizations, researchers, policy makers, teachers, and school leaders. Together, we seek to prepare our youth for the new literacy and learning skills required by the Internet and other information and communication technologies.

Please visit our New Literacies team page to learn more about us and our work.