Skip to Main Content
Skidmore College
First-Year Experience

Scribner Seminar Program
Course Description

Reading Minds: The History and Science of Literacy

Instructor(s): Rebecca Johnson, Psychology

The ability to read is a miracle. Although humankind invented reading only a few thousand years ago, many of us effortlessly and quickly extract meaning from small visual characters presented on a page. But what would life be like without the ability to read? How do reading skills develop and how should reading be taught? What parts of the brain enable us to read? What causes reading disorders such as dyslexia?  With the advent of e-books, what does the future of reading look like? Students will explore the answers to questions such as these as we investigate the history and cultural importance of reading as well as the scientific research behind how the mind and brain process written text. Students will also participate in literacy-related service learning opportunities in the community.

Course Offered