Claire E. White

Instructor Language and Literacy Department
School of Education, Child Life and Family Studies
Office: Brookline Campus, 015

Educational Degrees

Ed. D. 2005 (Language and Literacy), Harvard University Graduate School of Education
M.A. 1992 (English as a Second Language), University of Massachusetts at Boston
M.A. 1987 (Spanish and Latin American Literature), University of Massachusetts at Amherst
B.A. 1982 (English), St. Michael's College. Colchester, VT

Dr. Claire E. White teaches undergraduate and graduate courses at Wheelock College in the Language and Literacy department, specifically on improving academic achievement outcomes for second language learners, immigrant and refugee children in grades pre-k to Fourth grade.

White previously taught courses on improving instruction for struggling native English speakers and second language learners to middle and high school teachers at Harvard's Graduate Teacher Education Program from 2007--2011. White was also a tenured professor at the National University in Bogota, Colombia, teaching Applied Linguistics and the Theory and Practice of translation in the Linguistics and Foreign Languages Department.

Formerly an elementary school teacher in Massachusetts, White was also an ESL and bilingual teacher in the U.S. and in Latin America. She completed her doctoral dissertation at the Harvard Graduate School of Education on low-income Latino parents' support for their children's literacy development.

White has served as a consultant on issues relating to the education of struggling readers and ELLs for the New York City Public Schools, and the Fall River Public Schools and Lawrence Public Schools in Massachusetts. She is currently on a five-year project with the Nashville Public Schools. Prior to this work, White served as an education specialist at the Massachusetts Department of Education in the Office of Language Acquisition and Academic Achievement assisting districts to better serve their limited-English-proficient students.

White has master's degrees in English as a Second Language/Applied Linguistics and Latin American Literature. She lived and worked in Latin America for over 15 years.


  • Lawrence, J., Capotosto, L., Branum-Martin, L., White, C., & Snow, C. (2012). Language proficiency, home-language status, and English vocabulary development: A longitudinal follow-up of the Word Generation program. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition.
  • Lawrence, J., White, C., & Snow, C. (2011). Improving reading across subject areas with Word Generation. National Center for Research on Educational Achievement and Teaching of English Language Learners (CREATE) Brief,
  • Lawrence, J., White, C., & Snow, C. (2010). The words students need. Educational Leadership, 68(2), 22-26. 2.
  • Dressler, C., Carlo, M., Snow, C. E., August, D., & White, C. (2010). I went into the word and it sounded like love: The effect of explicit instruction on Spanish-speaking students' use of cognate knowledge. eBilingualism: Language and Cognition.
  • Snow, C., Lawrence, J., & White, C. (2009). Generating knowledge of academic language among urban middle school students. Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness, 2(4), 325-344.
  • White, C.E. & Kim, J. (2009) Putting the Pieces of the Puzzle Together: How Systematic Vocabulary Instruction and Expanded Learning Time can Address the Literacy Gap. Center for American Progress.
  • Carlo, M. August, D., McLaughlin, B., Snow, C., Dressler, C., Lippman, D., Lively, T. & White, C.E. (2004). Closing the gap: Addressing the vocabulary needs of English language learners in bilingual and mainstream classrooms. Reading Research Quarterly.

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