Featured Profile

Dr. Sally Shaywitz
Professor of Learning Development
Yale University

Sally E. Shaywitz, M.D., Professor of Pediatrics at the Yale University School of Medicine, received her AB (with Honors) from the City University where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and her MD from Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Together with her husband, Dr. Bennett A. Shaywitz, Dr. Sally Shaywitz conceptualized, established and is currently Co-Director of the Yale Center for the Study of Learning, Reading, and Attention. Dr. Sally Shaywitz has devoted her career to better understanding and helping children and adults who are dyslexic. Her research provides the basic framework: conceptual model, epidemiology and neurobiology for the scientific study of dyslexia. Together, the Drs. Shaywitz originated and championed the “Sea of Strengths” model of dyslexia which emphasizes a sea of strengths of higher critical thinking and creativity surrounding the encapsulated weakness found in children and adults who are dyslexic. Dr. Sally Shaywitz is the author of over 200 scientific articles, chapters and books, including the widely acclaimed national bestseller, Overcoming Dyslexia: A New and Complete Science-Based Program for Reading Problems at any Level (Knopf, 2003; Vintage, 2005) which received the Margo Marek Book Award and the NAMI Book Award.

Dr. Shaywitz, a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, has been honored for her work in advancing the scientific understanding of reading and dyslexia; most recently, in June 2005, she was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science degree by Williams College in recognition of her contributions. Among her many awards, she received the Townsend Harris Medal of the City College of New York and was the recipient of the Achievement Award in Women’s Health of the Society for the Advancement of Women’s Health Research and the Distinguished Alumnus Award of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Each year, Dr. Shaywitz has been chosen as one of the “Best Doctors in America,” one of “America’s Top Doctors” and one of “New York’s Top Doctors.” In recognition of her contributions to the National Academy of Sciences, Dr. Shaywitz was honored by the distinction of being named a National Associate of the National Academies. Dr. Shaywitz recently served on the Advisory Council of the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke (NINDS), and currently serves on the National Research Council Committee on Women in Science and Engineering, the National Board for Education Sciences, the National Advisory Board of the National Center for Learning Disabilities and the scientific advisory board of the March of Dimes. Dr. Shaywitz co-chairs the National Research Council Committee on Gender Differences in the Careers of Science, Engineering and Mathematics Faculty; she has most recently served on the Institute of Medicine Committee on Understanding the Biology of Sex and Gender Differences; on the National Reading Panel and on the Committee to Prevent Reading Difficulties in Young Children of the National Research Council. Dr. Shaywitz also serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Learning Disabilities and Learning Disabilities: A Contemporary Journal.


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Recent Contributions by Dr. Sally Shaywitz