Shane Templeton (Inducted 2022)

Foundation Professor Emeritus of Literacy Studies
University of Nevada, Reno


wst [at]

Curriculum Vitae: 

Biographical Statement

Shane Templeton is Foundation Professor Emeritus of Literacy Studies at the University of Nevada, Reno, and a former classroom teacher at the primary and secondary levels. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. Shane’s research has focused broadly on the development of orthographic knowledge (preK-adolescent) and the developmental relationships between orthographic knowledge and reading and writing. He has earned international acclaim for his research on developmental knowledge of spelling and morphology; his investigations have identified a sequence in which older students’ orthographic knowledge represents more advanced derivational morphological and phonological knowledge.

Moving the field beyond traditional word-memorization spelling instruction, Shane’s work recognizes that the structure of words represents both sound and meaning. His and his colleagues’ word study approach, which integrates spelling, vocabulary, morphology and reading, advances students’ word knowledge and affords more efficient reading and more elaborated writing. Shane’s scholarship has guided teachers and reading specialists in their work with students, and has been published in research and practitioner journals including Reading Research Quarterly, Applied Psycholinguistics, Reading Teacher, Elementary School Journal, Language Arts, Educational Leadership, Voices from the Middle, Journal of Educational Research, Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, Journal of Education, and Reading Psychology, as well as in edited volumes including the Encyclopedia of Education, International Encyclopedia of Education, Handbook of Reading Research, Handbook of Literacy and Technology, The Handbook of Research on Teaching the English Language Arts, The Encyclopedia of Early Childhood Literacy Education, Encyclopedia of Literacy, Language and Literacy Learning: Collaboration between Speech Language Pathologists and Classroom Teachers, Vocabulary Instruction: Research to Practice, and Literacy Development with English Learners: Research-Based Instruction in Grades K-6.

In his professional writing, Shane is perhaps best known as co-author of Words Their Way: Word Study for Phonics, Vocabulary, and Spelling Instruction. Now in its 7th edition, this approach to word study is taught widely in literacy teacher education and professional development programs, and subsequently has had a direct pedagogical impact on thousands of teachers and their students. He has also authored or co-authored a number of books on the teaching of literacy and word study including Teaching Reading and Writing: The Developmental Approach (PreK–8), Children's Literacy: Contexts for Meaningful Learning, Teaching the Integrated Language Arts, and Vocabulary Instruction: Word Study for Middle and Secondary Students.

Shane has spoken extensively across the U.S. and internationally, and has consulted with a number of states and school districts. In 1987 he was invited to be a member of the Usage Panel of The American Heritage Dictionary. Shane has served as educational consultant for The American Heritage Children’s Dictionary and was consultant for and wrote the foreword to Curious George’s Dictionary. His coauthorship of literacy instructional materials for children has provided teachers authoritative teaching tools.