Karen Burstein, Ph.D., Executive Director
M.A. in Special Education
B.A. in Special Education
Karen Burstein, PhD serves as Executive Director of the Picard Center and as the Loyd J. Rockhold Endowed Chair of Early Childhood. Professor Burstein completed her Master’s degree and Ph.D. in Special Education at Arizona State University, with an emphasis in learning disabilities research. For the past twenty years she has conducted a series of related studies on child and family access to equitable health care and education. During this time, she also conducted numerous large scale community needs assessments and evaluation studies of early education. She has worked extensively with families and children in culturally diverse rural communities including American Indians and Latinos from Central and South America. Her current research interests include early language development, curriculum-based assessments of early literacy skills, evaluation of models of early childhood professional development, and community-based participatory research.
Professor Burstein’s goal for the Picard Center is to continue to fulfill the mission of its founders by strengthening the existing statewide health care and education network, assisting network members to use data to inform policy and instructional and programmatic decisions, conducting assessments and collecting data on extant projects, and engaging UL Lafayette scholars in innovative cross-disciplinary research endeavors related to health, welfare, and education; thereby improving the quality of life for Louisiana’s children and families.