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Welcome to the VL2 website!
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Welcome to VL2! VL2 is a Science of Learning Center (SLC) on Visual Language and Visual Learning, one of six SLCs funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and is hosted by Gallaudet University. NSF established the Science of Learning Centers to support interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary research that presents new lines of thinking and inquiry into the science of learning. The purpose of the Science of Learning Center on “Visual Language and Visual Learning (VL2)” is to advance fundamentally the science of learning related to how aspects of human higher cognition are realized through one of our most central senses, vision. We especially pursue new perspectives on these learning processes through the widened vantage point of studying deaf individuals and sign language as a window into the flexibility and structure of the human mind. Out of all the SLCs, we are unique in our focus on the role of visual processes, visual language, and social experience in the development of higher cognition, learning, and literacy. We seek to understand more about how visual processes, visual language, and social experience effect the development of cognition and language. We also study these effects for reading and literacy. We seek this knowledge for the benefit of all humans. We study these learning processes in monolinguals and bilinguals across the lifespan in order to promote optimal practices in education in both formal and informal settings. VL2 conducts research across multiple disciplines in order to understand how the visual modality is used in learning, especially language learning, from infancy to adulthood. Our research program is structured developmentally (infant/toddler, children, and adults), with specific themes of research addressed at each stage of development. Our center’s research and work is organized around five strategic focus areas. They are: • Visual and cognitive plasticity; • Language Development and Bilingualism; • Reading and literacy in visual learning; • Translation of research to educational practice; and • Integration of research and education. VL2 is partnered with twelve national and international universities, and we work closely with affiliated researchers and universities to carry out our research agenda. Our ultimate mission is to improve the education and lives of all visual learners. Be they deaf or hearing, we hope to benefit the lives of the young visual learner learning to read, the teacher trying to create new teaching strategies for visual learners, the parents of visual learners, the schools that seek to build programs for visual learners. We also wish to highlight the unique gifts and needs of being a visual learner, especially young deaf children learning natural signed languages. Our website will include ASL translations of much of its content. The VL2 website contains descriptions of our research, an overview of our strategic initiatives, center news, biographical sketches of VL2 staff, links to the other NSF-funded SLCs, and other documents and links that might be of interest. Thank you for visiting our website and for your interest in our work. *Updated “About VL2” text for webpage (4/30/12)
VL2 Parent Information Package June 12, 2013 VL2 announces the release of a parent information package on the science of learning related to visual language and visual learning!