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.
Kurlaender also studies the impact of racial and ethnic diversity on student outcomes. She is an expert on the dismantling of federal mandatory and voluntary K-12 school desegregation plans and persistent inequalities in segregated minority schools, including access to adequate classroom resources and good teachers. She has worked with several school districts that have undergone major changes in enrollment as a result of legal challenges.
She serves on the executive committee of the UC Davis Center for Poverty Research, Wheelhouse: The Center for Community College Leadership and Research at UC Davis. She is also co-director of Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE), and is a researcher with the Center for Analysis of Postsecondary Readiness and the Center for Analysis of Postsecondary Education and Employment, Teachers College, Columbia University.