Faculty Directory

Susan M. Bruce

Professor; Chair, Teaching, Curriculum, and Society


TCS Teaching, Curriculum, and Society


Susan M. Bruce’s prolific career has focused on how students with severe disabilities—particularly those who are congenitally deafblind—communicate. Her action, descriptive, and intervention research has spanned literacy, assessment, teacher preparation, special education, and rare syndromes.

As professor and chair of the TESpECI department, Bruce improves the Lynch School with her expertise in pedagogy, teacher education, and international education. Her key research projects have included an international study on communication, language, and literacy in children who are deafblind.

Bruce earned her bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees from Michigan State University, and she has published dozens of scholarly articles. In 2010 she was invited to become a member of the National Joint Committee on the Communication Needs of Individuals with Severe Disabilities, an interdisciplinary advocacy organization.

Her current research interests include how children with disabilities develop symbolic understanding and expression and the pivotal milestones connected to specific communication achievements, such as joint attention and object permanence.

  • Serving on the Scientific Committee and presenting at the International Young Researchers Conference in Deafblindness, Saint Petersburg, Russia
  • Co-researcher with Marleen Janssen, University of Groningen, on instruction of communication, language, and literacy with children who are deafblind in US and Netherlands.
  • Program Coordinator of the Masters Degree Program, Global Perspectives: Teaching, Curriculum, and Learning Environments.