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“A New Approach to Learning Differences” Featured at 2016 Summer Institute

by Solvegi Shmulsky

Headshot of Eides
Brock and Fernette Eide

PUTNEY, Vt.--On June 19-22, 2016, Landmark College will hold its annual Summer Institute, a conference designed for educators and professionals to “reboot their learning and refresh enthusiasm for supporting students who learn differently (LD).” For the first time, some sessions of the conference will take place in the new Nicole Goodner MacFarlane Science, Technology & Innovation Center. Leaders in the field Dr. Brock Eide and Dr. Fernette Eide will give keynote and plenary talks reframing LD as diversity rather than a deficit. As with years past, concurrent learning strands in four topic areas will be offered, as well as single sessions and a student panel on the final day of the conference.

Incredible experience. It was totally worth the trip. So useful and helpful for my practice.—2015 Summer Institute attendee

The Landmark College Institute for Research and Training (LCIRT) organizes the Summer Institute. LCIRT Director Dr. Manju Banerjee said, “The Eides bring a fresh perspective to discussions about dyslexia by focusing on the strengths associated with the dyslexic profile, rather than the traditional focus on deficits.” She described the Eides as “dynamic speakers who truly engage audiences with compelling stories of dyslexic individuals and inspiring research findings.”

Landmark Staff and LCIRT staff accessibility and continual presence each day, with prompt attention to time. It was well organized.—2015 attendee


Sunday, June 19, 7:30 p.m.

"How Should We Think About Learning Differences? Why It's Time For a New Approach," by Brock Eide, M.D.

Historically, learning differences have been treated primarily as disabilities. In this presentation we’ll describe a new approach that starts from the premise that many learning differences represent normal and healthy patterns of brain diversity, with strengths as well as challenges resulting from these different patterns of organization. We’ll focus primarily on our work and research with dyslexic individuals to describe how this different approach looks, and what difference it can make for education, employment, and self-concept.

Great location, food, variety of presenters and sessions.—2015 attendee

Plenary Presentation

Monday, June 20, 9-10:30 a.m.

by Fernette Eide, M.D. 

This session will begin by talking about a great pivot which is taking place in our understanding of human neurobiological differences. Dr. Fernette Eide will share some of the progress that is being made in the neurodiversity movement through increased community, greater self-disclosure, and a better understanding of how neurodiverse minds are essential for innovation.

EF Coaching was phenomenal.—2015 attendee

Three-Day Strands

Four topic areas are available for participants to tailor their experience to professional goals and interests. Workshops are intentionally kept small to enable time for discussion, questions, and hands-on activities.  

  • 21st Century Study Skill Strategies: Activating the Inactive Learner
  • The Challenge of Text in a Multimedia World: Supporting Academic Reading and Writing 
  • Promoting Executive Function in the Classroom and Beyond 
  • Cognitive Neuroscience of Teaching and Learning: What Works

The Summer Institute is designed for individuals in a wide range of education roles. Attendees often include secondary school teachers, learning specialists, special educators, postsecondary disability service providers, principals, superintendents, administrators, curriculum and staff developers, tutors, advisors, college and university professors, and parents.

The timing of the 3-day strand was great--not too long, not too short. The food was very good. Very warm-hearted atmosphere at Landmark.—2015 attendee

Early-bird registration ends May 31. Participants can register online. Questions? Contact the Landmark College Institute for Research and Training (LCIRT) at 802-387-1662 or

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