September 9, 2014

Soden named new associate director of Vanderbilt Kennedy Center Reading Clinic

Brooke Soden, Ph.D., has been named the new associate director of the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (VKC) Reading Clinic.

Soden is an assistant professor with an appointment in the Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Bill Wilkerson Center and Department of Otolaryngology.

She earned her doctoral degree in Cognitive Psychology at Florida State University, where she trained with the Florida Center for Reading Research. She continued her training as a postdoctoral researcher at the Ohio State University studying the genetics of reading and math disabilities.

As associate director, Soden will coordinate and manage the VKC Reading Clinic, providing one-on-one reading tutoring for struggling readers in grades K-8. The clinic also provides community training and training for Vanderbilt undergraduate and graduate students in Special Education and Communication Sciences.

“Brooke comes to us with a wealth of knowledge about reading, having trained at one of the world’s best reading research institutes, Florida Center for Reading Research at Florida State University,” said VKC Reading Clinic faculty director Laurie Cutting, Ph.D. “Her vision of not only how to lead the clinic in the short term, but also how to grow it over time into a world-class entity is exciting and innovative. We look forward to having her as a clinical and scientific colleague.”

Soden is joined this fall in her leadership role by Crysti Jones, who led the Reading Clinic on an interim basis this past year. Jones, a graduate of Vanderbilt University’s Program in Special Education, will remain with the clinic through the fall to continue her contributions as well as facilitate a smooth transition.

“Crysti provided invaluable leadership in the clinic this past spring and we are delighted that she is able to continue working with us this fall,” said Elise McMillan, VKC UCEDD co-director. The Reading Clinic Team will include Soden, Jones, and Program Coordinator Mary Dangerfield.

“We are so pleased that Dr. Soden will lead the VKC Reading Clinic,” said VKC Director Elisabeth Dykens. “She has the expertise to provide outstanding leadership in reading instruction and reading research, which has long been a priority for the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center.”

“I am very excited to be here and look forward to working in the Reading Clinic and developing partnerships throughout Vanderbilt, the VKC, and the community,” said Soden. “This is an exciting place to be and I am honored to be a part of it.”

The VKC Reading Clinic provides intensive, individualized one-to-one tutoring using assessment and instructional methods proven by research to promote reading, serving primarily children through middle school. Reading tutors use state-of-the-art practices in teaching reading to students with reading difficulties or other students with disabilities who are delayed readers.