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Dr. Mary E. Little is a professor of exceptional student education at the University of Central Florida. She received her graduate and undergraduate degrees in Special Education and Curriculum and Instruction from the State University College at Buffalo and her doctorate in Special Education from the University of Kansas. Dr. Little has received in excess of $19 million in external funding for research and development from federal, state, and foundation funding agencies including the Institute for Educational Sciences (IES) and the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). Currently, she serves as the Principal Investigator for Intensive Interventions, a federally-funded research and development project through OSEP. The purpose of this project is to research, develop, and prepare educators to implement interventions in reading and mathematics to improve K-12 student learning especially within diverse, urban schools. Among her numerous articles, chapters, and books, two recent publications are entitled, Response to Intervention for Teachers: Classroom Instructional Problem Solving and RTI and Mathematics: Practical Tools for Teachers in K-8 Classrooms. Her professional experiences in the K-12 schools include roles as a secondary teacher, co-teacher, program coordinator and principal. Her research interests include evidence-based instructional practices, interventions, teacher efficacy, and student learning related to teacher learning. She teaches courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels using traditional and on-line formats, specifically in mathematics, assessment, instruction, action research, and program evaluation.

Areas of Expertise


  • Assessment and Instruction
  • Action Research
  • Program Evaluation

Evidence-based instructional practices

  • Interventions
  • Teacher efficacy
  • Student learning related to teacher learning


Ph.D. in Exceptional Education
University of Kansas


  • Teaching Incentive Award
  • University Leadership Cadre member
  • Women’s Mentorship Award
  • Sustained Millionaire Award-External Funding
  • Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Award


  • International Academy for Research in Learning Disabilities
  • American Educational Research Association (Action Research, Special Education, and School Reform SIG)
  • Council for Learning Disabilities (National officer: Treasurer-2006-2009)
  • Learning Disabilities of America (member: Executive Committee)
  • Council for Exceptional Children (Florida division: Former Vice President)
  • Teacher Education Division (Current National Chair – Professional Development: Former National Membership Chair; President: Florida chapter)
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