Sara Simonson, Ph.D., is a literacy professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Western Illinois University. She teaches graduate courses in literacy, secondary reading methods, leadership in reading, content area reading strategies and techniques, and effective vocabulary instruction. She has presented at conferences at the state, national, and international levels.
From 2004-2008, Dr. Simonson served as an associate editor for the Illinois Reading Council Journal and authored the Professional Development Column for each issue. During 2005-2006, she co-authored “Online Modules 1-10 Literacy to Learn: Reading and Writing Across the Curriculum for the United Star Distance Learning Consortium. In 2005, she authored “Module 4: Content Area Reading” for the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) Teachers’ Academy, Best Practices in Reading: The Middle Grades and Beyond: 4-8 and “Effective Instructional Practices for Content Area Classrooms at the Secondary Level” for ISBE’s Principal’s Flipchart.
In 2001, Dr. Simonson authored “Module 2: Supporting Vocabulary, Word Analysis, and Word Study” and “Module 3: Supporting Readers in the Content Areas" for ISBE's Meeting the Challenge: 3-5. She was named Outstanding Teacher in the College of Education & Human Services in 1995-1996 and was the first recipient of the Faculty Excellence in Multicultural Programming in 1995 at WIU. Dr. Simonson also provides in-services and workshops across the state. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa.