April 25, 2001
Funds available from
Institute on Reading and Learning
PALO ALTO -- The newly formed Stanford Institute on
Reading and Learning (SIRL) has announced it will offer several rounds
of research funding for Stanford faculty, postdoctoral scholars and graduate
students over the next two years on methods for understanding and diagnosing
reading disabilities in young children.
The institute, under the initial direction of neurology Professor
and Chair Bill Mobley, has been formed thanks to a generous gift to Stanford
from the Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation.
Mobley said SIRL will have a basic mechanisms component, including such
areas as neurology, genetics, psychology, psychiatry, education and linguistics;
a research and diagnostic clinic to identify individuals with learning
disabilities, classify and quantify those disabilities and find appropriate
treatments which could involve engineering fields for assistive technologies;
and a think tank component to address public policy implications of reading
disabilities, evaluate current methodologies to deal with them, analyze
data and disseminate the findings of the other divisions of SIRL for maximum
public use and benefit.
"We believe Stanford has the collective expertise to make tremendous progress
in reducing the problems that flow from reading and learning disabilities,"
Mobley said. Each round of SIRL funding will focus on a particular aspect
of reading disability, he said.
The first round of proposals under the basic mechanisms component is now
being solicited for awards to be made in July of this year, as follows:
Proposals are solicited for periods of one to three years that examine
methods for diagnosing, understanding and treating reading disabilities
in young children.
Proposals are encouraged that examine this topic at levels ranging across
classroom measurements, behavioral testing, neuropsychological measurements
or at the cellular and molecular level. The institute is particularly
interested in studies that bridge these different levels of analysis.
It is anticipated that some proposals will be submitted from multiple
laboratories whose members wish to study this area jointly.
The institute will be able to provide resources for experimental design
and data analysis. Proposals of no more than five pages (including project
period, detailed budget and anticipated results) should be submitted by
June 1 to Dr. William Mobley, Interim Director of SIRL and Chair of Neurology
and Neurological Sciences, 1201 Welch Road, Stanford School of
Medicine, MSLS Building, Room P211 (phone 723-6424).
They may be sent by fax to 498-6262. Requests are restricted to a maximum
of $100,000 per year. Submission of proposals in the range of $50,000
per year is encouraged so as to capture the involvement of as many scholars
The use of these funds for faculty salary is discouraged, institute officials
said. Proposals will be reviewed and ranked by the SIRL Steering Committee,
which is chaired by Mobley and also includes Linda Darling-Hammond, professor
of education; Ellen Markman, professor of psychology; Roger Noll, professor
of economics; Allan Reiss, professor of psychiatry; Neil Risch, professor
of genetics; David Rubenson, RAND Corporation; and Brian Wandell,
professor of psychology.
Final selections will be made by the SIRL Board, which consists of Stanford
faculty and external experts. Awards will be announced around July 15,
with funding made available immediately thereafter.
Funding for successful proposals will be guaranteed for one year. Additional
years of funding will be subject to review of progress reports by the
In addition, faculty funded by this mechanism will be expected to take
part in SIRL activities. For more information, contact Patricia Devaney,
SIRL deputy director, at 324-8213 or email@example.com
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