- PhD, Early Childhood Special Education and Literacy, UNC-CH
- MS, Speech and Hearing Sciences, UNC-CH
- BS, Speech-Language Pathology, UNC-Greensboro
Dr. Pierce worked as a speech-language pathologist serving all ages for over 20 years in a variety of settings including home and center-based early intervention, public schools, and residential facilities. She specializes in children with severe, complex communication needs. In 1990, Dr. Pierce helped to create the Carolina Literacy Center, now the Center for Literacy and Disability Studies (CLDS) which focuses on research and practice to assist persons with all types of disabilities at any age to develop their literacy abilities. She also taught neuromotor speech disorders at UNC for 7 years and augmentative and alternative communication at several universities around the state.
After leaving UNC-CH in the mid-nineties, Dr. Pierce served in many capacities in NC’s state government such as being the first state-wide Assistive Technology Consultant for Early Intervention Programs. She was instrumental in creating NC’s Assistive Technology Lending Library and Resource Centers that continue today. Dr. Pierce was also the Director of Professional Services for Early Intervention, the Director of the Durham Developmental Evaluation Center and an Educational Consultant for the Division of Exceptional Children and the Office of School Readiness in the Department of Public Instruction. She was the co-chair of the Language Development and Communication domain of the NC Early Learning Standards task force for preschool children and is currently serving in this capacity for NC’s Infant and Toddler Early Learning Standards.
Before recently returning to UNC-CH DSHS and the CLDS, Dr. Pierce obtained her Birth-Kindergarten teaching licensed and directed that program at Meredith College, the largest women’s college in the Southeastern U.S. At Meredith College, Dr. Pierce taught courses in observation-based assessment, variations in development, young children’s learning environments, and working with families, and supervised student teachers and early intervention interns. During her tenure at Meredith College, the NC Dept. of Public Instruction contracted with Dr. Pierce to develop Preschool Demonstration Classrooms and an emergent literacy assessment to measure the progress of children who are in the birth-to-five developmental range. Information on these and other literacy-related resources created by Dr. Pierce may be obtained on the Goversonr's Website http://www.governor.state.nc.us/Office/Education/Home.asp. Dr. Pierce currently maintains the B-K license as well as her NC speech-language pathology license, and her license to teach children in grades K-12 with speech, language, and hearing impairments. Patsy Pierce has served as a disabilities consultant in Israel, Bahrain, and Mongolia and taught augmentative and alternative communication at the Universidad Mayor de San Simon in Cochabamba, Bolivia. She has presented on emergent literacy and children with and at risk for disabilities in 48 states and 6 countries. She is currently on the National Head Start Family Literacy Advisory Board.
- SPHS 740 Comm Development
- SPHS 744 Motor Speech Disorders
Honors and Fellowships
7/06. Ethel Martus Lawther Award for significant contributions in scholarship, leadership, and service, School of Health and Human Performance, UNC-Greensboro
10/99. Award of Excellence in Assistive Technology, North Carolina Assistive Technology Project, N.C. Dept. of Health and Human Services.
3/95. Honors of the Association, North Carolina Augmentative Communication Association.
12/91. Regional Finalist, The Johns Hopkins University National Search for computing technology for persons with disabilities. Project Title: Functional Repeated Line Storybooks Using Microchip Technology.
8/77 - 5/81. Katherine Smith Reynolds Scholar, University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Pierce, P., Abraham, L., Rosenkoetter, S., Summer, G., & Knapp-Philo, J. (in press). Literacy development for professionals and children. In P.J. Winton, J.A. McCollum, & C. Catlett (Eds.), Preparing and supporting effective professionals: Evidence and applications in early childhood and early intervention. Washington, DC: Zero to Three Press.
Pierce, P. (2006). High expectations for language and literacy with infants and toddlers who have significant disabilities. In Learning to read the world: Language and literacy in the first three years, Rosenkoetter, S. & Knapp-Philo, J. (Eds.). Washington, DC: Zero to Three Press, pp. 335-353.
Pierce, P. & Profio, A. (2006). From cooing to conversation to The Carrot Seed: Oral and written language connections. In Learning to read the world: Language and literacy in the first three years, Rosenkoetter, S. & Knapp-Philo, J. (Eds.). Washington, DC: Zero to Three Press, pp. 103-123.
Catlett, C., Winton, P., Pierce, P.L., & Hamel, S.E. (2005). Resources to help teachers and other adults create literacy-rich environments. Young Exceptional Children, 8(3), 30-31.
Pierce, P., Catlett, C. & Winton, P. (2003). Resources within reason: Assistive technology. Young Exceptional Children, 6 (4), 28-29.
Pierce, P. (2002). Early intervention: A masterpiece of collaboration. Technical assistance report for the N.C. Partnership for Children/Smart Start, Raleigh, NC.
Catlett, C., Winton, P., Pierce, P, Ekblad, A., Horne, D., Hughes, M., Dinnebeil, L., & Rush, D. (1998). Shared priorities: Lessons from successful partnerships that are supporting preservice change through existing CSPD structures. In (Eds.), Idea '97: Strengthening personnel development in your state (pp. 79-81). Alexandria, VA: National Association of State Directors of Special Education.
Riechle, J., Wetherby, A., & Pierce, P. (1998). The transition from intentional to symbolic communication. In A. Wetherby, S. Warren, & J. Reichle (Eds.), Transitions in prelinguistic communication: Preintentional to intentional and presymbolic to symbolic. Baltimore: Paul H. Brooks.
Pierce, P. & Porter, P. (1996). Helping persons with disabilities to become literate using assistive technology. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities.
Koppenhaver, D., Pierce, P., & Yoder, D. AAC, FC, and the ABC’s (1995). American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology.
Katims, D. & Pierce, P. (1995). Literacy-rich environments and the transition of young children with special needs. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, 15(2), 219-234.
Koppenhaver, D., Pierce, P., Steelman, J., Yoder, D. (1995). Contexts of early literacy interventions for young children with disabilities. In M. Fey (Ed.), Language Intervention in the Early School Years, pp. 241-274. Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes
Pierce, P. (August, 1995). What I.I.F.? Integrated, Immediate, Functional Outcomes are implemented for children with disabilities? Aug Communique, 12(3), 5-7.
Trachtman, L. & Pierce, P. (1995). Great beginnings: Assistive technology for North Carolina’s Infants, Toddlers, & Families. IMPACT: Institute on Community Integration, 8(1), 8-9.
Buysse, V., Schulte, A.C., Pierce, P.L., & Terry, D. (1994) Models and styles of consultation: preferences of professionals in early intervention. Journal of Early Intervention, 18(3), 302-310.
Fitzgerald, J., Roberts, J., Pierce, P. & Scheule, M. (1994). Evaluation of home literacy environments: An illustration with preschool children with Downs Syndrome. Reading and Writing Quarterly.
Watson, L., Layton, T., Pierce, P., Abraham, L. (1994). Facilitating emergent literacy in a language preschool. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in the Schools, 25, 136-145.
Pierce, P. & McWilliam, P. (1993). Emerging literacy and young children with severe speech and physical impairments; Issues and possible intervention strategies. Topics in Language Disorders, 13(2) 47-57.
Koppenhaver, D.A., Coleman, P. Pierce, Kalman, S.L., & Yoder, D.E. (1991). “The Implications of Emergent Literacy Research for Children with Developmental Disabilities.” American Journal of Speech Language Pathology, 1(1) 38-44.