Rhona Stainthorp is a research professor in the Institute of Education, University of Reading, UK. She began her professional career teaching in a secondary school in London and turned to study psychology at Birkbeck College when confronted with the challenge of teaching young adolescent boys who could not read.
Over the last 40 years she has worked in a number of academic departments in UK universities teaching teachers, and speech and language therapists from undergraduate to PhD level about the development of literacy. She has also been extensively involved in providing continuing professional development across the UK. She has advised UK as well as overseas’ Governments on aspects of the development and teaching of reading and writing.
Her research focuses on the development of literacy mainly in the early years. It includes studies of reading, writing and spelling skills, precocious reading ability, children with literacy difficulties, and effective professional practice. Her published work includes over 100 research papers, manuals for teaching programmes, literacy tests, books for students and teachers, and conference papers.
She is committed to supporting teachers to enhance their professional practice through an understanding of the best quality empirical research evidence.