Ohio University

Sara Helfrich

Sara Helfrich Profile Picture
Associate Professor
Teacher Education
McCracken Hall 309LL

Dr. Sara R. Helfrich holds the BA in Elementary Education/Moderate Special Needs and the MEd in Special Education from Boston College and the Ph.D. in Reading Education from the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Helfrich teaches courses in reading methods, reading instruction and assessment, language and literacy development, and children's literature. She serves as Literacy Program Coordinator, overseeing both the undergraduate and online graduate reading programs. Dr. Helfrich also serves as Vice Chair of Faculty Senate and Chair of University Curriculum Council. Her major research interests include pre-service and in-service teacher self-efficacy related to teaching literacy, teacher preparation programming, and the role of partnerships in teacher education.

Most Recent Publications:

Dani, D., Hartman, S., & Helfrich, S. R. (2018). Learning to teach science: Early teacher candidates facilitate informal STEM events. The New Educator, 14(4), 363-380. DOI:10.1080/1547688X.2017.1356413 [Impact factor: 0.32]

 

Clark, S. K., Helfrich, S. R., & Hatch, L. (2017). Examining preservice teacher content and pedagogical content knowledge needed to teach reading in elementary school. Journal of Research in Reading, 40(3), 219–232. DOI:10.1111/1467-9817.12057 [Impact factor: 1.473]

 

Helfrich, S. R., & Clark, S. K. (2016). A comparative examination of pre-service teacher self-efficacy related to literacy instruction. Reading Psychology, 37(7), 943­–961.  DOI:10.1080/02702711.2015.1133466 [Impact factor: 0.653]

 

Lipp, J., & Helfrich, S. R. (2016). Pre-service teachers’ growth in understanding of best practice literacy instruction through paired course and field experience. Reading Horizons, 55(2), 45­–62.

 

Lipp, J., & Helfrich, S. R. (2016). Key Reading Recovery strategies to support classroom guided reading instruction. The Reading Teacher, 69(6), 639–646. DOI: 10.1002/trtr.1442 [Impact factor: 0.782]

 

Stigall, A., Dani, D., Helfrich, S. R., & Sickel, A. (2015, October). Using observations of fossils to reconstruct ancient environments. Science Scope, 39(2), 10–16.

 

Helfrich, S. R. (2013). Reading teacher self-efficacy: Measuring changes in two groups of graduate-level reading candidates over time. In L. Martin, M. Boggs, S. Szabo, & T. Morrison (Eds.), Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Yearbook (Vol. 35, pp. 315–331). Commerce, TX: Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers.

 

Helfrich, S. R. & Smith, W. E. (2012). Transitioning online: Moving a graduate reading program online while continuing to maintain program rigor and meet standards. In L. Martin, M. Boggs, S. Szabo, & T. Morrison (Eds.), Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Yearbook: The joy of teaching literacy (Vol. 34, pp. 105–119). Commerce, TX: Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers.

 

Helfrich, S. R. & Bean, R. (2011). Beginning teachers reflect on their experiences being prepared to teach literacy. Teacher Education and Practice, 24(2), 201–222.

 

Helfrich, S. R. & Bean, R. (2011). What matters: Preparing teachers of reading. Reading Horizons, 50(4), 241–262.

 

Sample Peer-Reviewed Research Presentations

 

Helfrich, S. R., Gibbs Grey, T., Francis, J., Gasparini, A., & Tier, A. (2018, November). Impacting third-grade students’ reading achievement: The relationship between mentor teachers, professional interns, and students within the clinical model of teacher preparation. Talk presented at the Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Annual Conference, Louisville, KY.

 

Helfrich, S. R., Hartman, S., & Sisson, L. I. M. (2018, March). From partnership to practice: Reflections on early childhood teacher candidates’ educational experiences. Talk presented at the National Association of Professional Development Schools Annual (NAPDS) Conference, Jacksonville, FL.

 

Helfrich, S. R., Gibbs Grey, T., Francis, J, & Goble, S. (2017, November). Assessing the effectiveness of the clinical model on student reading achievement and interest. Talk presented at the Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Annual Conference, St. Petersburg, FL.

 

Helfrich, S. R., & Clark, S. K. (2014, November). A continued look at preparing elementary school teachers for effective literacy instruction: How do teacher education experiences influence pre-service teacher self-efficacy? Talk presented at the Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Annual Conference, Delray Beach, FL.

 

Clark, S. K., & Helfrich, S. R. (2013, November). Preparing elementary school teachers for effective literacy instruction: How do teacher education experiences influence pre-service teacher knowledge? Talk presented at the Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Annual Conference, Dallas, TX.

 

West, L., Linscott, J., & Helfrich, S. R. (2013, February). It takes three: None of us is as smart as all of us. Talk presented at the Professional Development Schools National Conference, New Orleans, LA.

 

Helfrich, S. R. (2012, November). Reading teacher self–efficacy: Measuring changes in two groups of graduate-level reading candidates over time. Talk presented at the Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Annual Conference, Grand Rapids, MI.

 

Helfrich, S. R., & Smith, W. (2011, November). How do we manage field experiences in online teaching? Using supplemental technology in an online graduate reading program. Talk presented at the Association of Literacy Educators and Researchers Annual Conference, Richmond, VA.

 

Sample Grants ($507,569.80)

 

Hartman, S., Francis, B., Keifer Kennedy, M., Koestler, C., Kennedy, C., Helfrich, S. R., Andersen, C., Kahn, S., Felton-Koestler, M., Skon, J., Skinner, H., Syckes, J., Hoisington, L., Michigan, L., West, L., More, S., Vogt, C., & Mason-Hurst, M. (2018). Diverse literacy kits: A collaborative endeavor to increase use of critical literature in early childhood Professional Development School Partnerships. Grant application to the Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education Mini-Grant for Academic Engagement & Outreach, Athens, OH. $1,500.

 

Hartman, S., Kennedy, M. K., Koestler, C., Hoisington, L., Michigan, L., Kennedy, C., Helfrich, S. R., West, L., Payne, S., & Dani, D. (2017). Full STEAM ahead: Creating informal learning opportunities for early childhood PDS partnerships. Grant application to the Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education Mini-Grant for Academic Engagement & Outreach, Athens, OH. $1,400.

 

Middleton, R., Helfrich, S. R., & Gibbs Grey, T. (2017). SEOTDC Clinical model research collaborative: Impact on P–12 student learning. Grant application to the Ohio Department of Higher Education. $50,000.

 

Dani, D., Koestler, C., Hallman-Thrasher, A., Helfrich, S. R., Stigall, A., & Sandler, N. (2016). Scaffolding inquiry and problem solving through literacy and assessment strategies. Grant application to the Ohio Department of Higher Education, Columbus, OH. $136,593.

 

Ottley, J., Jung, J., Johnson, L., Helfrich, S. R., & Hartman, S. (2016). Blended Master’s Program: Early Childhood Education/Early Childhood Special Education at Ohio University. Grant application to the Ohio Dean’s Compact on Exceptional Children, Columbus, OH. $218,575.80.

 

Helfrich, S. R., West, L., & Dani, D. (2014). Science Night at West Elementary! Grant application to the Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education Mini-Grant for Academic Engagement & Outreach, Athens, OH. $750.

 

Helfrich, S. R., West, L., & Sudnick, N. (2014). Math Night at West Elementary! Grant application to the Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education Mini-Grant for Academic Engagement & Outreach, Athens, OH. $750.

 

Helfrich, S. R. (2014). Measuring change in teacher candidates’ personal knowledge, confidence, and attitudes related to classroom management before and after participation in an adult learning theory-driven training program. Grant application to the Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education Graduate Study and Educational Research Fund, Athens, OH. $5,000.

 

Helfrich, S. R., West, L., Kennedy, C., & Mullins, H. (2013). Teacher candidates develop their classroom management knowledge and skills through professional development. Grant application to the Gladys W. & David H. Patton College of Education Mini-Grant for Academic Engagement & Outreach, Athens, OH. $1,486.

 

Dani, D., Sickel A., Helfrich, S. R., & Stigall, A. (2012). Improving Teacher Quality. Grant application to the Ohio Board of Regents (OBR), Columbus, OH. $91,515.