James W. Pellegrino is Liberal Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor and Distinguished Professor of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He also serves as Co-director of UIC’s interdisciplinary Learning Sciences Research Institute.
Dr. Pellegrino's interests focus on children's and adult's thinking and learning and the implications of cognitive research and theory for assessment and instructional practice. He chaired the NRC study committee that produced the 2001 report Knowing What Students Know, His current work is focused on analyses of complex learning and instructional environments that incorporate powerful information technology tools. The goal: understanding the conditions that enhance learning with deep understanding. Another focus is formative assessment practices, assisted by technology, to maximize student learning and understanding. Increasingly his research and writing has focused on the role of cognitive theory and technology in educational reform and translating results from the educational and psychological research arenas into implications for practitioners and policy makers.
From 1973-1979 he was Professor of Psychology and a Research Associate of the University of Pittsburgh's Learning Research and Development Center. From 1979-1989 he was Professor of Education and Psychology at the University of California at Santa Barbara where he also served as Chair of the Department of Education from 1987-1989. From 1989-2001 he was the Frank W. Mayborn Professor of Cognitive Studies at Vanderbilt University, where he also served as co-director of the Learning Technology Center from 1989-1991, and as Dean of Vanderbilt’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development from 1992-1998.