Colby Hall

Colby Hall

  • Assistant Professor
Currently Accepting Ph.D. Students

Office Location

Bavaro Hall 323
PO Box 400273
417 Emmet Street S
Charlottesville, VA 22903


Colby Hall studies literacy development, assessment, and instruction. Her research focuses on the components of effective literacy instruction for elementary and middle-school students with or at risk for literacy-learning difficulties; inference instruction as a means of improving reading comprehension; reading instruction for bilingual/multilingual students with reading difficulties; instruction supporting text comprehension in content-area classrooms; and technology-delivered reading instruction.

Hall is currently co-PI of an Institute of Education Sciences-funded project that aims to further develop and pilot the Reading RULES for Kindergarten small-group literacy intervention program. She is Co-I of an Office of Special Education Programs-funded project that seeks to provide school leaders with web-based coaching to support teachers of students with disabilities in delivering evidence-based academic vocabulary instruction. Hall has authored peer-reviewed publications in Educational Psychology Review, Reading Research Quarterly, and Remedial and Special Education, among other peer-reviewed journals.


Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin, 2016
M.A., Teachers College, Columbia University, 2007
A.B., Harvard College, Harvard University, 2002

Curriculum Vitae


  • Reading assessment
  • Word reading and spelling instruction for elementary students with or at risk for dyslexia
  • Language comprehension instruction to support reading comprehension for elementary and middle-school students with or at risk for reading comprehension difficulties 
  • Reading instruction for emergent bilingual students with reading difficulties
  • Instruction supporting text comprehension in content-area classrooms
  • Technology-delivered reading instruction

Featured Research

Effectiveness of Interventions for English Learners with Word Reading Difficulties: A Research Synthesis

This study meta-analyzed the last four decades (1980–2020) of reading intervention research focused on improving reading outcomes for English language (EL) students in Grades K–5 with or at risk for word reading difficulties.

Pilot Study of Unlocking Understanding Professional Development to Support Grade 3 Reading Comprehension

This study piloted a reading comprehension instruction professional development intervention for teachers of upper elementary grade students (Unlocking Understanding), exploring the relative effects of two versions of the intervention that varied the degree of lesson scripting.


Faculty Associated

Fostering Independence While Teaching Students With or at Risk for Reading Disabilities

This article describes the GRR model of instruction and provides specific guidance and resources to support special education teachers in implementing the GRR model during small-group reading instruction in primary-grade classrooms, with a particular emphasis on facilitating group and independent practice.


Faculty Associated

Observing Two Reading Intervention Programs for Students with Dyslexia

This exploratory study examined the nature of instruction provided in two reading intervention programs designed for elementary-grade students with dyslexia (The Multisensory Teaching Approach and Reading RULES!).

Featured News