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.
After teaching middle school math for ten years, I decided to pursue a PhD to get a fresh perspective on the issues I observed every day in my classroom and thought that maybe I could help develop remedies that would help other teachers, as well.
Steven Athanases is a Professor in the School of Education at UC Davis. He researches issues of cultural and linguistic diversity and educational equity in teaching, adolescent learning, and teacher education, with a focus on literacy and English language arts. As a high school English teacher in the Chicago area, he received several awards for outstanding teaching of English, with a focus on writing, and drew on his disciplinary roots in Performance Studies and Communications to stage annual performance showcases of original student compositions.
Heidi Ballard is the Founder and Faculty Director of the Center for Community and Citizen Science. You can find more information about her past and current projects, and sign up for occasional updates at the Center’s website.
Marcela Cuellar joined the School of Education in July 2014 as an assistant professor in higher education & leadership. She received her doctorate in Higher Education and Organizational Change at the UCLA Graduate School of Education & Information Studies. Her research examines access and equity in higher education, Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) and emerging HSIs, and Latinx student success. More specifically, Dr.
Cati V. de los Ríos is an Assistant Professor in the School of Education. She has taught in California and Massachusetts public schools. Cati’s research explores the intersections of adolescent literacies, transnationalism, translanguaging, ethnic studies, and teacher education. Her scholarship draws from ethnographic and participatory methodologies and is informed by ethnic studies frameworks and sociocultural and critical theories of language and literacy.
Darnel Degand joined the School of Education as an assistant professor in July 2017. He studies the various ways media and society influence the development of social success skills by exploring the social processes that exist within media production environments and media consumption experiences. His research also involves the design and development of educational media products and experiences.
I research the relationship between students’ everyday uses of language (English and Spanish) and their engagement in school-based uses of language and literacy. Some schools identify bilingual adolescents as “limited” in their English proficiency even though they use sophisticated literacy repertoires outside of school; other learners are deemed ”fluent” in English but still struggle with the language and literacy demands of their academic coursework.
My work focuses on how communities and regions produce and disrupt disparities in youth well-being, with emphasis on disparities associated with race/ethnicity, immigration, socio-economic status and geographic location. My interest in youth well-being situates my activity at the intersection of educational reform, public health, youth development and community development. I ground my work conceptually at the nexus of theories of development in social ecological contexts, critical human geographers’ analyses of space and place as socially produced, and critical race theory.
Cassandra Hart is an associate professor of education policy. She evaluates the effects of school, state and national education programs, policies, and practices on overall student achievement, and on the equality of student outcomes. Hart’s work has focused on school choice programs, school accountability policies, and effects on students of exposure to demographically similar teachers. She is also interested in the effects of virtual schooling on student outcomes, both in K-12 and post-secondary settings.
Jennifer Higgs is an Assistant Professor of Learning and Mind Sciences and Language, Literacy, and Culture. Her research focuses on digital tool use that supports learning and teaching, adolescents’ digital literacies, and teacher education in the language arts. Using mixed methods and sociocultural theories of learning, Dr. Higgs investigates practices around digital tools as well as improvement of digital tool practices. What fundamentally drives her work is a desire to learn how the possibilities afforded by new cultural tools can support robust and socially just learning.
Margarita Jimenez-Silva is an associate professor and director of teacher education at the School of Education in University of California, Davis. Her research focuses on preparing and supporting teachers to work with culturally and linguistically diverse learners, especially in addressing emergent bilinguals’ linguistic and academic content development. More specifically, her research strands include teacher education pedagogy and curriculum, educational policy, and family/community engagement.
Michal Kurlaender investigates students’ educational pathways, in particular K-12 and postsecondary alignment, and access to and success in postsecondary schooling. She has expertise on alternative pathways to college and college readiness at both community colleges and four-year colleges and universities. In addition to working with national data, Kurlaender works closely with administrative data from all three of California’s public higher education sectors–the University of California, the California State University and the California Community College systems.
Faculty ProfileEMPHASIS AREA: LLC. Adolescent Language and Literacy; English Education; Linguistic Anthropology of Education; Sociocultural Approaches to Learning; Discourse Analysis; Black and Latina/o Youth Interactions; Ethnography
Francisco (Paco) Martorell joined the School as an assistant professor in July 2014. Martorell completed his PhD in economics at UC Berkeley. Prior to joining the School, he was an Economist at the RAND Corporation and was a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School since 2006. He has broad research interests in both higher education and K-12 policy. Current projects cover areas including developmental education in colleges, the effects of grade retention, the returns to for-profit colleges, the impacts of school facility investments, and community college tuition subsidies.
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.
Deb Niemeier is a professor with a joint appointment at the School of Education and the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. In September 2015, after a positive vote by Senate faculty in the spring, then Chancellor Linda Katehi approved Niemeier¹s joint appointment in the School of Education.
Alexis Patterson, Ph.D., joined the School of Education in July 2015 as an Assistant Professor in science education. She is currently a CAMPOS Faculty Scholar and is excited to work with her cohort to develop a research center that focuses on increasing the participation of women of color in STEM related fields.
Office hours: Fall Quarter 2017 — By Appointment Only
Gloria M. Rodriguez’s current research explores notions of educational investment that reflect efforts to build upon community strengths in order to address community needs within and beyond educational settings. Dr. Rodriguez also engages in research that focuses on the political economic conditions and educational trajectories of Chicana/o-Latina/o communities, other communities of color, and low-income populations in the U.S.
Nadeen Ruiz, Ph.D. obtained her MA and Ph.D. at Stanford University in bilingual education and linguistics after a career as a bilingual teacher. Formerly, Dr. Ruiz was Director of Elementary Education at Stanford University and of Teacher Preparation at CSU Sacramento. She received teaching awards at both institutions in 1997, 2004, and 2005. In addition, Dr. Ruiz is the recipient of the California Association of Bilingual Educators Teacher Preparation Program Award (2010) and the UC Davis School of Education Outstanding Alumna Award (2011). Dr.
Nicole Sparapani is an assistant professor in the School of Education and faculty member 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). Dr. 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.
Dr. Lisa Sullivan brings a range of skills and experience to her work in Teacher Education. Lisa worked as a classroom teacher in East Los Angeles and in Northern California before obtaining her doctorate from UC Davis in Learning and Mind Sciences. She has worked extensively with both classroom teachers and higher education faculty to improve teaching and learning. Lisa has conducted over twenty program evaluations for K-12 and university based education initiatives. She has expertise in the area of special education, having worked on a national implementation grant to support general education teachers to implement best practices for students with autism. Lisa has also taught both credential and Masters students at UC Davis, Sacramento State University and Loyola Marymount University. Her dissertation research examined the role of attention in learning and school readiness for preschool children. Her main area of interest is in working with educators to translate research into practice that will improve outcomes for all students.
Ph.D. in Learning and Mind Sciences, University of California, Davis, 2010
M.A. in Educational Psychology, University of California, Davis, 2006
B.A. in Psychology, Phi Beta Kappa, cum laude, University of California, Irvine, 1986
Publications and Working Papers
Franzone, E., Kucharczyk, S., Sullivan, L., & Szidon, K. (2012). Facilitating the use of evidence based practices in classrooms: The national professional development center model for implementation. In Mundy, P. & Mastergeorge, A. (Eds), Autism for Educators, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Sullivan, L. (2010). Joint attention: Interactions with word learning and school readiness. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering, Volume 71(11-A), pp.3902.
Abedi, J., Kao, J.C., Leon, S., Mastergeorge, A., Sullivan, L., Herman, J., & Pope, R. (2010). Accessibility of segmented reading comprehension passages for students with disabilities. Applied Measurement in Education, 23 (2), 168-186.
Mundy, P., Sullivan, L., & Mastergeorge, A. (2009). A parallel and distributed-processing model of joint attention, social cognition and autism. Autism Research, 2(1), 2-21.
Abedi, K., Kao, J., Leon, J., Sullivan, L., Herman, J., Pope, R., Nambiar, V., & Mastergeorge, A. (2008). Exploring factors that affect accessibility of reading comprehension assessments for students with disabilities: A study of segmented text (Report No. 746), 80pp. Los Angeles: National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing (CRESST).
Manuscript Currently Under Review
Sullivan, L., Mundy, P., & Mastergeorge, A. Joint Attention, Social Behavior and School Readiness in Preschool Children.
Early Literacy; English Learners; Bilingualism and Bilingual Education; Educational Television and Multimedia; Language Acquisition; Literacy development; Quantitative methods; Sociolinguistics and psycholinguistics.
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.
Tobin White studies the use of technology in teaching and learning mathematics. He has a particular interest in using mobile computing to support novel approaches to engaging learners with STEM content and practices. Using a design-based research approach, he develops collaborative problem-solving tools and activities in order to investigate intersections between conceptual and social dimensions of learning. A former high school mathematics teacher himself, he has also worked for more than a decade in teacher preparation.
Maisha T. Winn’s research spans a wide variety of understudied settings including her earlier work on the literate practices extant in bookstores and community organizations in the African American community to her most recent work in settings where adolescent girls are incarcerated.