Janis Bulgren, Ph.D. is a Research Professor at the University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning. Her research addresses ways that teachers can plan for and provide instruction so that all students can understand critical content information, engage in reasoning, and generalize learning and reasoning. Students include those with learning disabilities and at-risk for school failure or low achievement as well as those who are average-achieving and high achieving.
The focus of her research is on both acquisition of critical content-area knowledge and cognitive approaches to higher-order thinking and reasoning. She has developed instructional materials and procedures for teachers to use to help students with comprehend concepts, make comparisons, answer critical questions, explain cause-and-effect relationships, analyze and evaluate arguments, and make decisions.
Dr. Bulgren’s recent research on analysis and evaluation of scientific and socio-scientific arguments has been extended to the development of an educational game to support student learning and engagement in argumentation. She is currently collaborating on an Innovation in Instruction grant with SRI and CAST to develop integrated sets of instructional procedures for units in science and social studies, and to support that instruction with technology. She has served as PI or co-PI on grants from the National Science Foundation and the Department of Education. Dr. Bulgren has collaborated with many researchers at the KUCRL as well as specialists in the KU School of Education and other research and development entities.
Her work has been disseminated in peer-reviewed scholarly publications and studies, such as the Journal of Educational Psychology, Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, Journal of Research on Technology in Education, Focus on Exceptional Children, Learning Disability Quarterly, Teaching Exceptional Children, Learning Disabilities: A Contemporary Journal, Journal of Learning Disabilities, Journal of Learning and Individual Differences, Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness. Educational Media International, Electronic Journal of Science Education, Journal of Science Education and Technology, The Arithmetic Teacher, Education and Treatment of Children, Annual Editions of Educating Exceptional Children, and IACD Quarterly