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Northwestern School of Communication

Doris Johnson

The JoAnn G. and Peter F. Dolle Professor Emerita in Learning Disabilities
Doris Johnson

Doris Johnson is a pioneer in the study of learning disabilities. Along with her colleague Helmer R. Myklebust, she is the author of Learning Disabilities: Educational Principles and Practice, a landmark book that became one of the foundational texts for understanding otherwise healthy children who have difficulty processing certain information. Her research focuses on the importance of symbols in the learning process and how problems affect an individual’s ability to understand and use various types of information. For nineteen years, Johnson was the director of Northwestern’s Learning Disabilities Program. She has served as the executive director for the International Academy for Research in Learning Disabilities and remains active in the Learning Disabilities Association of America. Still an engaged and committed teacher, Johnson sits on the advisory board of the Association of Educational Therapists and is currently working on an early literacy project with several graduate students for the Chicago Public Schools.


  • PhD Education, Northwestern University
  • MS Speech and Language Pathology, Northwestern University
  • BS Speech Therapy, Augustana College