Speaking on Sept 30, 2015 to a Congress hearing on the Research Excellence and Advancements for Dyslexia (READ) Act, Dr Tallal's testimony included these points:
- There is an epidemic of reading failure that we have both the scientific evidence and the interventions to treat.
- Decades of scientific research show that reading success relies on a solid foundation of rapid, consistent auditory processing and oral language skills.
Traditional tools for teaching reading, regardless of how expertly and how often they are applied, will not work for most struggling readers until these more foundational skills are remediated.
Not providing educators with evidence-based tools to address both listening and oral language skills is equivalent to demanding that a builder construct the third floor of a school without having the tools to build a sufficiently strong first and second floor, and then wondering why the school keeps collapsing.
Including classroom listening interventions can improve a child’s reading ability and fundamentally rewire the brain for healthier learning and communication skills.
She has authored over 200 professional publications and holds several patents. She earned the Thomas Alva Edison Patent Prize for her work leading to the development of the Fast ForWord® program.