Fellowships Available for Full-time Ph.D. Students in Education and in Quantitative Psychology
The UC Davis School of Education and Department of Psychology have recently received funding from the U.S. Department of Education Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) program. The GAANN program was designed to attract graduate students from underrepresented groups into a variety of specialized fields with too few highly skilled workers. GAANN awards in the area of psychometrics address a national need to develop expertise in student assessment and in rigorous quantitative research methods, in an environment in which tests are used with increasingly high stakes for students, teachers, and schools despite growing awareness that tests do not always consistently reflect the learning of all students.
GAANN Fellows will undergo rigorous methodological training while also learning about measurement techniques specifically designed to develop and evaluate measures used with English language learners, students at risk of behavioral maladjustment, and students with disabilities. They will also participate in training in higher education pedagogy and take on at least one substantial teaching responsibility.
GAANN fellows will receive fellowship and assistantship for five years that will include a full living stipend, tuition and health benefits. Successful applicants will also:
1) participate in rigorous training in educational assessment, psychometrics, and quantitative research methods;
2) conduct research with faculty affiliated with the grant;
3) participate in training to teach methodological courses in higher education settings; and
4) be exposed to the work of a wide array of psychometricians and quantitative research methodologists who have agreed to speak in proseminar series.
We seek applicants for a Ph. D. in Education or in Psychology who have a strong quantitative background. Students will concentrate in Educational Assessment, Psychometrics & Quantitative Research Methods with an emphasis on the assessment of students with special needs. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or residents, and eligible for financial assistance. Members of underrepresented groups are highly encouraged to apply.
To learn more about the fellowship, students seeking a PhD in the Graduate Group in Education should contact Dr. Megan Welsh at firstname.lastname@example.org or 530-752-9890, and those seeking a PhD in Psychology should contact Dr. Emilio Ferrer at email@example.com, or review our Information Flyer.
Specializing in educational and psychological assessments, Jamal Abedi’s research focuses on testing for English language learners and issues concerning the technical characteristics and interpretations of these assessments. Abedi is the author of many publications in the assessment of and accommodations for English-language learners. He is on the advisory committees for several major assessment organizations and advises a number of states on testing for English learners and children with disabilities.
Megan Welsh joined the School in July 2014 as an assistant professor in educational assessment and measurement. Since 2008, she was an assistant professor at the University of Connecticut. Her primary areas of research include test validity analysis, the use of assessment as an educational reform lever, grading, and evaluation of educational programs.
There are seven million exceptional children with special needs in our American school system, such as children with autism spectrum development. They have the right to appropriate and comparable educational opportunities. Truly meeting the needs of these children requires a commitment to integrating advances in educational science, neuroscience, and social policy.
Nicole Sparapani is an assistant professor in the School of Education, and she also holds a faculty appointment at the UC Davis MIND Institute. Her research interests center around the development and evaluation of effective educational practices for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Sparapani practiced as a certified speech-language pathologist on an interdisciplinary team serving preschool children with ASD for several years before pursuing her Ph.D. in Communication Science and Disorders at Florida State University and postdoctoral training at Arizona State University.
Psychometricians and quantitative methodologists are in high demand, have skills that can be applied in many settings, and typically have relatively high starting salaries. Upon earning their Ph.D.s, Fellows could be hired to work as: