Dr. Wolf received her doctoral degree from Harvard University, where her research began on the reading brain, the development of language and literacy, and dyslexia. She has two degrees in literature from Northwestern University and from St. Mary’s College/University of Notre Dame. Selected awards for teaching include Distinguished Professor of the Year from the Massachusetts Psychological Association; the Teaching Excellence Award for Universities from the American Psychological Association.
For her work on dyslexia she received the Alice Ansara Award, the Norman Geschwind Lecture Award, and Samuel Orton Award (the International Dyslexia Association's highest honors). For other research she received a Fulbright Research Fellowship (Germany); the NICHD Shannon Award for Innovative Research, which resulted in the RAVE-O reading intervention program; and the Distinguished Researcher Award. Most recently, Wolf was awarded the Christopher Columbus Award for intellectual discovery for her current work on global literacy in Ethiopia, Uganda, South Africa, India and rural US. She and her colleagues at the MIT Media Lab and Georgia State University are developing a digital learning experience, Curious Learning, that will bring literacy opportunities to children in remote regions of the world. This cross-disciplinary work is the topic of two invited lectures to the Vatican Academy of Sciences in the last year and one in the upcoming year on Education for Disenfranchised Peoples.
The author of over 130 scientific publications, Wolf wrote one book for public audiences, Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain, which has received numerous awards and is now translated into 13 languages. At the Center for Advanced Studies for the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, she is completing two books, What It Means to be Literate: A Literacy Agenda for the 21st Century for Oxford University Press, and Letters to the Good Reader: The Contemplative Dimension in the Future Reading Brain for Harper-Collins.