About the presenters:
Eileen Murphy Buckley is the Founder of ThinkCERCA. She became passionate about the role technology could play in 21st-century education as the director of curriculum and instruction for more than 100 high-performing schools in Chicago Public Schools.
Prior to joining the district office, Eileen was the founding English department chair at Walter Payton College Prep, the No. 1 ranked high school in Illinois, and taught English for 15 years. She is also the author of 360 Degrees of Text (National Council of Teachers English, 2011). In 2012, Eileen was accepted into the inaugural class of Impact Engine, Chicago’s first social impact investment fund and accelerator. ThinkCERCA was the recipient of a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Literacy Courseware Challenge grant in 2013. In 2018, Eileen was named one of the 100 most intriguing entrepreneurs by Goldman Sachs and one of 35 world-changing women by Conscious Business. She is an Unreasonable Fellow and a Pahara-Aspen Fellow as well as an industry advisor to a number of multinational firms.
Dr. Eva Dundas
Dr. Eva Dundas is the Chief Learning Officer of Branching Minds, where she pursues her mission to bridge the gap between the science of learning and education practice. Dr. Dundas has a Ph.D. in Developmental and Cognitive Psychology from Carnegie Mellon University where she conducted research on how the brain develops when children acquire visual expertise for words and faces. Her research also explores how the relationship between neural systems (specifically language and visual processing) unfolds over development, and how those dynamics differ with neurodevelopmental disorders like dyslexia and autism. She has published articles on that subject in the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, Neuropsychologia, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, and Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Dr. Dundas also has a M.Ed. in Mind, Brain, and Education from Harvard University; and a B.S. in Neuroscience from the University of Pittsburgh.
ThinkCERCA is a literacy platform designed to help district leaders measure, manage, and improve outcomes districtwide. Our robust curriculum library and research-based pedagogy provides teachers with easy-to-implement, differentiated reading and writing resources across subjects from grades 3-12. With the CERCA Framework, students practice making Claims, supporting them with Evidence, explaining their Reasoning, addressing Counterarguments, and appealing to their Audience in ELA, Social Studies, Science, and Math. With one platform, one framework, and analytics that provide districtwide insights district leaders can operationalize teamwork around literacy growth (2 years of reading growth and 20% gains in writing per year.)