Our corporate name, The Learning Bar Inc. (TLB), refers to ground-breaking educational research led by Dr. J. Douglas Willms known as Raising and Leveling the Learning Bar. Our solutions are drawn from, and guided by, this cutting-edge research.

The aim of this collaborative research program was to bring together a multidisciplinary team of researchers who could focus their research and training efforts on a single question: “How can we raise and level the bar?”, or specifically “How can we improve the learning, behavior, and health outcomes of our youth, while reducing inequalities associated with family background?”.

Literacy, behavior, and health go hand-in-hand, because people with higher levels of literacy tend to have healthier lifestyles, less disease, and generally a better quality of life.

The research program utilized the data from longitudinal research on children’s development to address several policy issues relevant to “raising and leveling the bar”. It focused on five key strategies:

1) safeguard the healthy development of infants;
2) strengthen early childhood education;
3) improve schools and local communities;
4) reduce segregation and the effects associated with poverty; and
5) create a family-enabling society.

The research was carried out by a research team comprised of five senior scholars (Clyde Hertzman, Ann Gauthier, Noralou Roos, Richard Tremblay, and J. Douglas Willms), and 21 new scholars, whom of which are members of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research’s New Investigators Network (CIAR-NIN). The team’s work was also supported by an International Advisory Board comprised of five senior scholars who are recognized leaders in the field of human development (Fraser Mustard, Catherine Peckham, Jose Soares, Fiona Stanley, and Michael Wolfson).


Raising and Leveling the Bar: A Collaborative Research Initiative on Children’s Learning, Behavioral, and Health Outcomes

The RLB Team