The Institutes on Academic Diversity are committed to providing educators with high quality, research-based support in differentiating instruction. The Institutes take place on the University of Virginia grounds in Charlottesville, VA, and are a stone’s throw from Thomas Jefferson’s beloved Monticello and a short drive to the Blue Ridge Mountains. Sessions end by 3:45 on Thursday and Friday and 2:30 on Saturday, allowing participants to soak up the cool, little city that is Charlottesville or zip out to one of the many wineries in the area.

Our Best Practices Institute (BPI) provides a unique, intimate conference experience. Already attending? More information HERE.


See below for an overview of our 2017 Institute. Click here for our 2017 Best Practices Institute program.

Thursday, March 9, 2017: High-Quality Curriculum

Carol guides participants through the crucial role high-quality curriculum plays in a differentiated classroom. In the afternoon sessions participants will break into content area or administrator sessions where they will unpack concepts from the morning.

Friday, March 10, 2017: Assessment for Instruction

Carol presents about the key role of formative assessment in responsive instruction. In the afternoon content area sessions participants will learn how pre-assessment, formative assessment, and summative assessments fit within a unit.  Participants will also engage is hands-on data analysis within their content area to serve as a springboard to the Saturday’s focus on responsive instruction. Administrator sessions will focus on how to lead and support teachers in their use of data to inform instruction.

Saturday, March 11, 2017: Responsive Instruction and Tips for Managing a Differentiated Classroom

Carol presents on the whys and hows of differentiated instruction. During afternoon break out sessions participants will learn more about instructional strategies to use when they have groups that differ based on readiness.  Participants will also discuss questions such as, “How do I tell my students they are not all working on the same task? What do I do if students finish early?”  Administrators will discuss ways they can help teachers successfully guide flexible classrooms.


Carol Ann Tomlinson, Ed.D., is William Clay Parrish, Jr. Professor and Chair of Educational Leadership, Foundations, and Policy at the University of Virginia’s Curry School of Education where she is also Co-Director of the University’s Institutes on Academic Diversity. Prior to joining the faculty at UVa, she was a public school teacher for 21 years. During that time, she taught students in high school, preschool, and middle school and also administered programs for struggling and advanced learners. She was Virginia’s Teacher of the Year in 1974. Carol is author of over 300 books, book chapters, articles, and other educational materials. She was named Outstanding Professor at Curry in 2004 and received an All-University Teaching Award in 2008. In 2016, she was ranked #16 in the Education Week Edu-Scholar Public Presence Rankings for “University-based academics who are contributing most substantially to public debates about schools and schooling,” and as the #3 voice in Educational Psychology. She works throughout the United States and internationally with educators who seek to create classrooms that are more effective with academically diverse student populations.

Catherine Brighton, Ph.D., Co-Director of the Institutes on Academic Diversity, is Associate Dean for Academic Programs and Student Affairs, Associate Professor in the Curry School of Education, University of Virginia, and Co-Principal Investigator on two sponsored research projects focused on teachers’ use of literacy data to inform instruction. She earned her doctorate in Educational Psychology (Gifted Education emphasis) at the University of Virginia. Prior to that, she served as a curriculum coordinator/assistant principal, teacher of the gifted, and classroom teacher in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, (Charlotte, NC). She is the Past-President of the Virginia Association for the Gifted, Treasurer of the American Educational Research Association, Special Interest Group in Research for Giftedness and Talent, and the former Program Chair for the Research and Evaluation Division of the National Association for Gifted Children, from whom she received the 2005 Early Leader Award.

Tonya R. Moon
Tonya R. Moon, Ph.D., is a Professor in the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia and a co-director of the Institutes on Academic Diversity. Tonya spends her professional career actively engaged in teaching assessment, research, and statistics courses at the University and conducting research in K-12 classrooms investigating teachers’ use of data for designing instructional actions. Tonya has published and presented widely on the topics of assessment, differentiation, identification of gifted students, and program evaluation.  She is co-author with Carol Tomlinson on the ASCD text, Assessment and Student Success in the Differentiated Classroom, and the author of a chapter on differentiation and assessment with in a diverse classroom setting the the recently released Handbook of Human and Social Factors in Assessment. She works both nationally and internationally with educators on issues associated with assessment.

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Hilary Dack, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Middle Grades Education at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her areas of specialization include differentiating instruction and high-quality curriculum design in K-12 general education classrooms. Hilary’s current research focuses on how teacher education programs prepare preservice and early career teachers to respond effectively to academic diversity. Her recent publication on experiential instructional techniques in social studies received the American Educational Research Association’s 2015 Social Studies SIG Outstanding Paper Award. Hilary teaches courses on instructional design to undergraduate middle grades and secondary teacher candidates. Before earning her Ph.D. at the University of Virginia, she taught 7th and 8th grade American history, language arts, science, math, and English as a second language. Her publications on engaging curriculum and the importance of cultural awareness, co-authored with Carol Tomlinson, have appeared in Educational Leadership and Phi Delta Kappan.

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Kelly Hedrick, Ed.D., is the Principal the Edward E. Brickell Academy for Advanced Academics and Arts at Old Donation School in Virginia Beach, VA. She is the former Director of Gifted Education and Curriculum Development having overseen gifted programs and curriculum development K-12. Prior to that she directed K-12 gifted education and academy programs which included 7 specialized programs at the high school level. Dr. Hedrick has worked as a classroom teacher at the elementary and middle school levels, and served as a middle school resource teacher. The National Association for Gifted Children awarded her a 2005 Doctoral Student Award. She was named Outstanding Leader for Program Development & Support for Gifted Learners by the College of William and Mary (2011). She is the 2015 Virginia Association for the Gifted Leader of the Year. She presents on gifted education, curriculum, differentiation, and related topics at the state and national levels in addition to serving as a consultant to school divisions outside Virginia Beach focusing on curriculum, instruction, and leadership for differentiation.

marcia imbeau
Marcia B. Imbeau, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, where she teaches graduate courses in childhood education and gifted education. She has been actively involved in university and public school partnerships, working regularly with her interns and their mentor teachers as a university liaison and teaching courses in curriculum development, differentiation, classroom management, and action research. The new Common Core Standards are an embedded feature of her work regarding differentiation, curriculum development and classroom management. She has been recognized for her teaching and was awarded the College of Education and Health Professions Outstanding Teaching Award in 2000 and 2003. Marcia has taught in general education classrooms, programs for students identified as gifted and talented and university-based enrichment programs for advanced learners. Among her publications are Differentiating Instruction in the Inclusive Classroom (with Barbara Gartin, Nikki Murdick, Darlene Perner), A Differentiated Approach to Common Core (with Carol Tomlinson), Parallel Curriculum Units K-5 (editor), Managing a differentiated classroom: K-8 (with Carol Tomlinson), Leading and Managing a Differentiated Classroom (with Carol Tomlinson).

Jennifer Maeng, Ph.D. is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Education in the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia. She is a former high school science teacher and has led a number of grant-funded professional development projects for elementary, middle, and high school science teachers. In addition, she has written and presented about differentiated instruction, educational technology integration, inquiry, and nature of science instruction for both research and practitioner audiences.

Mindy Moran B&W
Mindy Moran, MEd., Mindy is currently finishing her doctoral work at the University of Virginia in Curriculum, Teaching, and Learning. She has co-taught courses on differentiation with Carol Tomlinson and has worked with districts on program implementations, evaluations and curriculum development. With support from the I. Lab Incubator Batten Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, she developed and piloted a suite of online teacher tools that she is currently writing about in her culminating doctoral work on differentiation and technology. She spent 10 years as educational consultant for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt School Publishers and also taught 7th grade English in Fairfax County Public Schools, VA. She has worked closely with both pre-service and experienced teachers for over 15 years.

Jennifer Pease, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia.  A teacher education generalist, she works with preservice and inservice teachers to promote the development and implementation of high quality curriculum, instruction, and assessment in middle and high school settings.  Her teaching and research interests include classroom-based assessments, fostering students’ responsibility for their own learning, and exploring the role of non-cognitive skills in students’ academic growth.  Prior to completing her doctoral work at Curry, Jennifer taught English and social studies at the middle and high school levels for ten years.

Christine Trinter, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education at Virginia Commonwealth University. She teaches courses in mathematics methods and leadership for mathematics specialists. She also enjoys working with in-service teachers on areas associated with curriculum development.  Her research interests lie in curriculum studies and factors associated with teacher development.


GROUP (5+) $359$379

* Please Note: Preservice educators need to fill out this form prior to registration. If you have any questions please contact us at said@virginia.edu