Jacqui Kearns, Ed.D. is the principal investigator for the University of Kentucky subcontract for TIES Center. At the University Kentucky, she leads major projects at the Human Development Institute at the University of Kentucky including the TAALC (Teaching Academic Age-appropriate Learning via Communication) project. She is also the previous director of the National Alternate Assessment Center (NAAC) and the developer of the Leaner Characteristics Inventory. Her area of focus includes communicative competence.