Beth Tuckwiller

Beth Tuckwiller
Assistant Professor, Special Education & Disability Studies
(202) 994-9860

Dr. Beth Tuckwiller is an Assistant Professor of Special Education and Disability Studies at the Graduate School of Education and Human Development at The George Washington University. She earned her Ph.D. in Special Education from the University of Virginia, and holds a B.S. in Psychology and an M.S. in Counseling Psychology. Dr. Tuckwiller was trained in the field of mental health counseling, and focused her clinical work on children and adolescents. She also taught high school students identified with emotional, behavioral and/or learning disabilities, and co-coordinated school-based social, emotional and behavioral programming to improve educational experiences and outcomes for students.

Dr. Tuckwiller's current research investigates the nonacademic variables associated with teaching and learning in special education and community programming. She investigates positive psychology constructs and skills including optimism, mindset, hope, mindfulness, strengths building, self-efficacy, and life satisfaction to better understand their roles in the holistic development and post-secondary transition experiences of students with disabilities. She also investigates the relationships of these variables to the professional preparation, experiences, and retention of special education teachers. Broadly, her work functions to promote increased knowledge of the malleable dispositions, personal constructs, psychological orientations, and skills associated with optimal functioning for children and adolescents identified with disabilities and the educational professionals who serve them. She is a faculty affiliate with the GW Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders Institute and a Center Associate at GW's Center for Health and Health Care in Schools at the Milken Institute School of Public Health. She serves as an advisory board member for both the GW Center for Applied Developmental Science and Neuroeducation and GW's ISCOPES service learning initiative.

Ph.D., University of Virginia
M.S., Radford University
B.S., Virginia Tech


Tuckwiller, E. D., Dardick, W. R., & Kutscher, E. L. (in press). Profiles of and correlations among mindset, grit and optimism in adolescents with learning disabilities: A pilot study. Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies in Education.

Tuckwiller, E. D. (2015). Positive transition special education: A call to examine approaches and outcomes from an interdisciplinary and positive lens. 2015 HEATH NYTC Spring Newsletter.

Tuckwiller, E. D., & Dardick, W. R. (2015). Positive psychology and secondary transition for children with disabilities: A new theoretical framework. Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies in Education, 4(1), 3-20.

Pullen, P. C., Tuckwiller, E. D., Ashworth, K., Lovelace, S. P., & Cash, D. B. (2011). Implementing intensive vocabulary instruction for students at risk for reading disability. Learning Disabilities Research & Practice, 26, 145 - 157.

Azano, A., & Tuckwiller, E. D. (2011). GPS for the English classroom: Understanding executive dysfunction in secondary students with autism. Teaching Exceptional Children, 43(6), 38 - 43.

Tuckwiller, E. D., Pullen, P. C., & Coyne, M. (2010). An investigation of at-risk kindergarten students' response to a two-tiered vocabulary intervention: A regression discontinuity design. Learning Disabilities Research & Practice, 25, 137 - 150.

Pullen, P. C., Tuckwiller, E. D., Maynard, K. M., Konold, T. R., & Coyne, M. (2010). A response to intervention model for vocabulary instruction: The effects of tiered instruction for students at-risk for reading disability. Learning Disabilities Research & Practice, 25, 110 - 123.

Lindstrom, J. H., & Tuckwiller, E. D. (2009). Extended test time, read aloud and student characteristics: A summary of empirical findings. Learning Disabilities: A Multidisciplinary Journal, 15, 93 - 104.

Lindstrom, J. H., Tuckwiller, E. D., & Hallahan, D. P. (2008). Assessment and eligibility of students with disabilities. In Grigorenko, E. (Ed.) Educating Individuals with Disabilities: IDEIA 2004 and Beyond. New York, NY: Springer Publishing.

In the News

Dr. Beth Tuckwiller delivered two roundtable presentations at the Fifth World Congress on Positive Psychology in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The presentations were entitled "The Relationships among Positive Psychology Constructs (Mindset, Grit, Optimism) and Academic and Transition Outcomes for Adolescents with Learning Disabilities" and "Positive Educator Preparation for Special Education Teachers (PEP-SET) Model: Infusing Positive Psychology into Special Education Teacher Preparation."

Dr. Beth Tuckwiller was the featured speaker at the 2017 Spring Conference for Children Together, a non-profit organization committed to increasing inclusion of children with disabilities and their families into quality early childhood programs.

Dr. Beth Tuckwiller was invited to be a Center Associate at the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools at GW's Milken Institute School of Public Health.

Dr. Beth Tuckwiller, Dr. William Dardick, and special education doctoral student Elisabeth Kutscher's manuscript, "Profiles of and Correlations Among Mindset, Grit, and Optimism in Adolescents with Learning Disabilities: A Pilot Study," was accepted for publication in the Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies in Education.

GW's team won the grand prize at the 2016 DC Public Health Case Challenge for their solution titled Communities for Collective Action (C4CA)! The annual challenge aims to promote interdisciplinary, problem-based learning around a public health issue of importance to the local Washington, D.C. community. This year's topic was The Changing American City and Implications for Health and Well-being of Vulnerable Populations.