Home | Newsletter | Speaking | Training | Topics | Contact Us | The Center | Profile

Feedback | 99 LDR Catalog | Training Catalog | PA SD Project | Information

Center for Alternative Learning

6 E. Eagle Road

Havertown, PA 19083


Serving Those Who Learn Differently


Learning disAbilities Newsletter


Vol. 17 No.1 October 1999


Center for Alternative Learning

6 East Eagle Road

Havertown, PA 19083






Cooper Screening Of information Processing The C-SIP is one of the screening instruments included in the National Institute for Literacy’s Bridges to Practice, a training manual about learning disabilities. Many people around the country like this screening, developed by Dr. Cooper, but there are no studies which ascertain that it is reliable and verifiable for identifying individuals who have learning problems. A number of agencies in Pennsylvania, New York and Maryland have expressed an interest in working with Dr. Cooper to collect data to determine if the C-SIP can consistently identify those individuals who should be referred for further testing to determine if they have learning and/or attention problems. In addition to being a screening instrument, the C-SIP is designed to be a diagnostic teaching tool. It can help educators to understand how individuals process information so they can plan instructional strategies. Dr. Cooper has written an administration manual for the screening. It is available in the LDR Catalog. Anyone interested in participating in this study should contact the Center for Alternative Learning for details.


Harcum College’s Plus Program Dr. Cooper as been hired as a consultant for the Harcum College’s Plus Program, the college’s program for students with learning disabilities. He will work a few hours per week training staff and working with students who have learning problems. Dr Cooper was the Assistant Dean and Director of Continuing Education at Harcum College 22 years ago. He left the college to establish the services he now operates to serve individuals with learning differences.


NAASLN and Galaxy II The 1999 NAASLN Conference was held in conjunction with the American Association for Adult and Continuing Education in San Antonio, Texas. The National Association for Adults with Special Learning Needs held its board and membership meetings at the conference. The Board has unanimously voted to move the NAASLN office from Washington DC to New Orleans, LA at the new Center for Community Literacy. The Center’s Director Dr. Mary Ann Corly, like Dr. Cooper, is a founding board member of NAASLN. The daily operation of the association will be handled by the Center’s staff. As of this mailing we do not have an address. We will list NAASLN’s new address and phone number in the next issue of this newsletter.

Dr. Cooper made five presentations at the Galaxy II Adult Education conference in San Antonio, Texas: alternative study skills, math techniques, writing techniques, employability skills, and test anxiety.


Tutor Appreciation Events Dr. Cooper was the quest speaker at two tutor appreciation events in western Pennsylvania. At the New Castle event he spoke to board members, tutors and learners about accommodations for adults with disabilities. At the Crawford County event in Meadville, he provided the board, tutors and learners with words of motivation and encouragement in their efforts to increase the basic skills of adults with learning differences.


New LDR Catalog The 2000 Learning disAbilities Resources Catalog is ready and being mailed. The new catalog is twice the size of last year’s because we have added a number of new products and have increased the description of the products. Of particular interest to individuals with learning differences is the Writing Workbook and new study aids. Individuals who use Tic Tac Toe Math will find Advanced Tic Tac Toe Math: the Cube of interest. A new video tape about test anxiety can be used to help teachers and parents understand students who suffer from test anxiety. If you have not yet received a copy of the new catalog, contact our office. Anyone who would like multiple copies of the Catalog for distribution to friends and colleagues should contact Scott at 1-800-869-8336.


Center For Alternative Learning

Writing Seminar The Center has added a Writing Seminar to the activities offered in the evenings. The seminar is offered on Monday evenings, from 6 to 8, when Dr. Cooper is not conducting training elsewhere. The seminar is designed for adults who would like to improve their written expression. Individuals participating in the seminar will learn how to improve their spelling and sentence structure through the various language development techniques which Dr. Cooper has developed over the 18 years he has been working with individuals who learn differently. For more information about the Writing Seminar, contact our office at 610-446-6126.

Volunteer Tutors We welcome volunteers to work with the students at the Center. Volunteer tutor orientation and training is offered monthly at the Center. Call for information.


A Busy Summer


1) Homeschooler’s Conference At the invitation of homeschoolers, Dr. Cooper made a presentation at the Northeastern Pennsylvania regional conference. In addition to the session in which he provided parents with reasons why some children have difficulty learning in traditional ways, throughout the day at the exhibition hall, Dr. Cooper demonstrated the learning tools he has developed.

2) Kansas Summer Institute Dr. Cooper conducted training at the Kansas Adult Education Summer Institute in July and has been asked to return for the seventh time for next summer’s institute.

3) In Syracuse, New York, Dr. Cooper introduced adult educators to alternative reading and math techniques and returned 6 weeks later for a training session on Tic Tac Toe Math.

4) He conducted a training session on learning problems for New Prison Teachers in Harrisburg for the PA Department of Corrections.

5) As he has done for the past four summers, Dr. Cooper taught two 1 credit courses for elementary and secondary teachers in Delaware County, PA. The courses: Teaching Reading and Teaching Math were held at the Upper Darby School District.

6) Elementary and secondary special education teachers in the Altoona, PA School District participated in a day long training about Dr. Cooper’s alternative instructional techniques for children with learning disabilities.

7) The staff of Cleveland, Ohio Public School District’s Adult High School had Dr. Cooper provide training on the characteristics of learning differences, screening for those differences and instructional techniques for helping adults with learning problems complete their high school education.


Weather Woes Like so many others in Southeastern Pennsylvania, we were significantly impacted by Hurricane Floyd. At both the Center and at home, the storm caused flooding in the basements and leaking roofs. Fortunately nothing of importance was damaged and although the cleanup took a number of days, the storm did not permanently interfere with our operations.


Up-Coming Presentations by Dr. Cooper


November 5 Charles County Adult Education. Three sessions: Characteristics of Learning Differences, Teaching Reading and Math and the Cooper Screening, Waldorf, MD


November 10 & 11 Literacy Volunteers of America’s Annual Conference, Nashville, TN 1) Pre Conference Workshop: Alternative Instructional Materials for Adults who Learn Differently 2) (For Adult Students) Straight Talk about How Adults Learn Differently, 3) Alternative Materials for Teaching Reading and Writing


November 12 At the Penn Ohio Adult Education Conference, Dr. Cooper will make three presentations, two about Accommodations for Special Populations and the third on the Cooper Screening. Mars, PA


The National Institute for Literacy’s Bridges to Practice Dr. Cooper will assist with the training on learning disabilities for two counties on Long Island. Martin Murphy, who worked at the Center for Alternative Learning, has requested Dr. Cooper to participate on the Long Island training team. Mr. Murphy is the now the director of adult education staff development on Long Island, New York.


Newsletter Subscription


Name _______________________________

Address _______________________________

City __________________State___ Zip_______


One year $10.00 _______

Two year $18.00 _______

Donation to the Center _______

Total _______





Pennsylvania Statewide Staff Development Project


Dr. Cooper finished up last year’s project with a number of training sessions in June and began the 1999/2000 year’s staff development project early by conducting training during July and August. This year’s project will again provide training throughout the state to teachers and volunteer tutors about adults who learn differently. We plan to reach out to agencies which have not received training from the project in previous years. Many of these agencies are located in the rural areas of the state. In the past, small adult education programs reported that they felt that they needed to send their staff to training sessions offered at larger programs. This often results in fewer staff from a program receiving training. Any agency or adult education program which would like to have Dr. Cooper come and provide a training locally can contact him to discuss dates, time schedules and topics. The following is a list of the topics which Dr. Cooper offers to adult educators. Training topic descriptions are available on our website (www.learningdifferences.com) or in the Center’s Training Catalog. (The documents also include the training topics that Dr. Cooper has for professionals working with both children and adults.)


Training Topics


Tic Tac Toe Math

If They Think Differently, Shouldn’t They Study Differently

Helping Students with Test Anxiety

Assessment of Learning Problems

Cooper Screening of Information Processing

Avoidance Styles and Activities

Teaching Reading, Writing and Math to Adults with Learning Problems

Techniques for Teaching Adults Who Learn Differently

Teaching Adults with Low Level Literacy and Numeracy Skills

Weak Academic Skills

Teaching Reading to Adults with Learning Problems

Helping Adults to Improve Reading Comprehension

Teaching Spelling and Writing to Adults with Learning Problems

Vocabulary Development for Adults with Learning Problems

Teaching Math to Adults with Learning Problems

Multilevel Classroom Techniques

Helping Adults with Learning Differences to Develop Social and Life Skills

Counseling Adults with Learning Problems

Accommodating Adults Who Have Learning Disabilities

Learning Problems and English as a Second Language

Employment and Learning Problems

Designing Adult Education Programs to Meet the Needs of Adults

with Learning Differences, Problems and Disabilities

Teaching GED Math and Science to Adults with Learning Problems

Teaching GED English and Social Science to Adults with Learning Problems

Helping Adults to Work with Children Who Have Learning Problems

Using Mnemonics

Questions and Answers about Learning Differences for Tutors

Recent Findings from Research Projects on Learning Disabilities

In-Depth Session on Teaching Reading

In-Depth Session on Teaching Writing

In-Depth Session on Teaching Math

In-Depth Session on the Cooper Screening of Information Processing




Demonstrations of the Cooper Screening of Information Processing and alternative instructional techniques has already been requested by a number of agencies this year. These demonstrations are an alternative to workshop type training sessions. Teachers and tutors who have participated in these demonstrations report that seeing the techniques in action increases their understanding of the techniques and how alternative techniques can be used to match a student’s thought patterns. Copies of the materials which are demonstrated are provided to participants and to the host agency. Program directors who would like demonstrations or training sessions, should contact Dr. Cooper by phone or e-mail (rcooper642@aol.ocm) to discuss the program’s needs and the type of training which would best meet those needs.


Teachers and tutors can contact Dr. Cooper at 1-800-869-8336 to inquire about alternative instructional techniques or to ask questions about their students.




1999/2000 Training Sessions:

already completed


July 28 Philadelphia Professional Development Center 9:30 - 12:00

Cooper Screening of Information Processing Philadelphia


August 11 Philadelphia Professional Development Center 9:30 - 12:00

Teaching Math to Adults with Learning Problems Philadelphia


August 31 Abington Library Literacy Program 7:00 - 9:00

Questions and Answers for Tutors Abington


Sept 14 Lock Haven University Literacy Corps 6:00 - 8:30

Tic Tac Toe Math Lock Haven


Sept. 20 Lawrence Co Literacy 12:00 - 3:00

Demonstration of Cooper Screening of Information Processing New Castle


Sept 21 Clarion Co. Literacy 9:00 - 12:00

Cooper Screening of Information Processing Clarion


Sept. 21 Crawford Co. Read 4:00 - 5:00

Demonstration of Cooper Screening of Information Processing New Castle


Sept 22 Edinboro University Literacy Corps 12:00 - 2:00

Cooper Screening of Information Processing Edinboro


Sept 22 Edinboro University Literacy Corps 4:30 - 6:00

Accommodating Adults with Learning Problems Edinboro


Sept 22 Edinboro University Literacy Corps 7:00 - 8:30

Teaching Reading, Writing and Math to Adults with Edinboro

Learning Problems


Oct. 2 Berks Co. Literacy Council 9:00 - 12:00

If They Think Differently, Shouldn’t They Study Differently Reading


Oct. 27 Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit 10:00 - 2:00

Learning Problems and English As A Second Language Danville




Pennsylvania Staff Development

Training Sessions


Dec. 2 Penncrest School District 4:00 - 8:00

To be announced Saegertown


Dec. 3 Community Action Inc. 5:30 - 8:30

Teaching Techniques for Adults with Learning Differences Punxsutawney


Dec. 6 Alle-Kiski Learning Center 9:00 - 3:00

Reading, Writing and Math Techniques Arnold


Jan. 6 Delaware County Intermediate Unit 12:30 to 3:30

Teaching Reading to Adults with Learning Problems Media


Jan. 24 Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council 9:00 - 12:00

Math Techniques for Adults with Learning Differences Pittsburgh


March 16 Chester County Library 1:00 to 3:00

To be announced Exton


There are many other training sessions being planned but the dates and times for these have not yet been confirmed. They will appear in the next newsletter. Also planned for the Spring are regional training sessions on What Adult Educators Need to Know about Accommodating Adults with Severe Learning Disabilities (two confirmed dates for these are March 15th in the Southeast region and March 24th in the Northwest region). The second statewide project planned for the Spring are regional Forums on the needs of adult learners with learning differences in Pennsylvania.


Adult educators and volunteer tutors in Pennsylvania who would like to participate in these or other training activities can contact our office to inquire about the specifics of up-coming training in your region.


Home | Newsletter | Speaking | Training | Topics | Contact Us | The Center | Profile

Feedback | 99 LDR Catalog | Training Catalog | PA SD Project | Information