The UCLL DyslexiaHelp Team
Joanne Marttila Pierson, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
It is my privilege to have worked with our donor and provided leadership to DyselxiaHelp since its conception, and to continue in this role. I bring a unique, and rare, skill set to DyslexiaHelp with expertise in both oral and written language disorders. My Masters and undergraduate training are in speech-language pathology (SLP) with degrees from the University of Michigan and Western Michigan University, respectively. I returned to UM to obtain my doctorate from the School of Education with an emphasis in Language, Literacy, and Learning Disabilities. I also hold State of Michigan teacher certification. I practiced as an SLP in the public schools for many years and from 2000-2012 was the Associate Director of the UM Center for the Development of Language and Literacy. In 2013, I resigned my position, with the exception of managing DyslexiaHelp, and opened the Literacy, Language, and Learning Insitute (3LI) where dyslexia and other language-based learning disabilities are our specialty.
In addition to writing for and managing the website, my eyes read every piece of content on DyslexiaHelp prior to it going live. It truly is a gift to work on this website, to have seen it come to fruition, and be a part of the team that offers this free curriculum and resource center to anyone with internet access. Hats off to our donor!
When I am not working at an advertising agency in Ann Arbor, I am designing print and web-based promotional materials for DyslexiaHelp, managing all of our social media accounts, and generally "getting the word out" about the website. Working on DyslexiaHelp has given me a new, more open-minded perspective on how design can be used to ease and enhance an individual’s learning experience.
The DyslexiaHelp Design Team
DyslexiaHelp is the textbook case of how to do a project right. As a small, focused team, we worked hand in hand with our UM DyslexiaHelp counterparts to marry innovative design and technical development with stakeholder needs, industry best practices, and well-planned execution to create a site that will be a valuable and long-lasting tool for students of all ages, professionals and parents. DyslexiaHelp truly lives up to its motto: "Success starts here!"
I have had the pleasure of being a part of the DyslexiaHelp website from its inception. We started with stakeholder interviews to make sure we understood the accessibility needs of our users. I kept these in mind as I integrated Ken’s designs into Drupal, the content management system. We trained UM DyslexiaHelp staff so they are able to add and maintain content. I provided them with tutorials and one-on-one training as needed. As a parent having to navigate IEPs and 504s for my children, I find DyslexiaHelp a great resource.
I am a Clinical Psychologist in private practice in Grand Rapids, Michigan. For over 30 years, I have diagnosed and treated children and adults with learning disabilities, depression, and anxiety disorders. I am the past President of the Michigan Branch of IDA and a past Vice President of IDA. I have authored many articles and chapters on dyslexia and psychiatric disorders including The Other 16 Hours in the Emeritus series. I am presently a member of the faculty of the International Individual and Group Psychotherapy Association. Visit my website, dyslexiadx.com to learn more.