Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. ~Margaret Mead
I research how schooling facilitates successes for students, teaching faculty, and communities. To address these complex phenomena, I utilize a wide range of advanced statistical modeling techniques, including social network analysis, and mix these methods with systematic qualitative analysis of content, non-participant observation, and interview data.
My expertise is in the area of sociology of education (SoE). I distinguish my SoE research in two ways. First, I focus on behaviors and attitudes much more than test scores. Behaviors and attitudes shape engagement and addressing disengagement from school needs to be at the forefront of the educational policy. Second, I focus on the meso-level unit of analysis, namely schools, school organization, and school culture effects. This theory-rich area of sociology of education research was once the hub of theory in the sub-discipline, but it has fallen to the wayside in the past half century to a focus on the individual, student micro-level of analysis. The institutional arena is where policy can be implemented most effectively to enhance the well-being of students, their teachers, and their communities.
My broader research agenda seeks to understand the institutional effects on group and individual attitudes, behaviors, and norms -- how it produces inequality and can be used to create equality. This is where my research on human flourishing, including generosity, fits.
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