Spring 2021 Education Research Lectureship Series

For the current Education Research Lectureship Series, please visit our website.

All lectures are virtual and do not require registration. 

Lectures are primarily sponsored by the Virginia Education Sciences Training (VEST) Program (supported by the U.S. Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences or IES)  and the School of Education and Human Development Dean’s Office, although other co-sponsors may be noted below per talk.

Jean Rhodes, University of MassachusettsOlder and Wiser: New Ideas for Youth Mentoring in the 21st Century

Dr. Jean Rhodes, University of Massachusetts Boston
Friday February 5th, 2021; 12:00-1:30 PM

Co-Sponsored with Youth-Nex

Virtual -Zoom

Bio: Jean Rhodes is the Frank L. Boyden Professor of Psychology and the Director of the Center for Evidence-Based Mentoring at the University of Massachusetts Boston. She has devoted her career to understanding and advancing the role of intergenerational relationships in the intellectual, social-emotional, educational, and career development of marginalized youth. She has on topics related to positive youth development, the transition to adulthood, and mentoring. Dr. Rhodes is a Fellow in the American Psychological Association and the Society for Research and Community Action, as well as a former Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellow and Distinguished Fellow of the William T. Grant Foundation. She has been awarded many campus-wide teaching awards for her advances in pedagogy and scholarship, including the Distinguished Academic Leadership and Outstanding Service to the Students of UMass Boston Award. Rhodes completed her Ph.D. in clinical/community psychology at DePaul University and her clinical internship at the University of Chicago Medical School. Her book, Older and Wiser: New ideas for youth mentoring in the 21st Century (Harvard University Press) was published in August, 2020. 

Abstract: Although youth mentoring is one of the most popular and frequently suggested volunteer activities in the U.S., programs are not nearly as effective as most people assume. The results of hundreds of evaluations present a disappointing bottom line.Yet, because the term “mentoring” is so intuitively appealing, and because this approach has been backed by such powerful constituents—from former U.S. presidents to Wall Street executives and professional athletes—the field has been granted unusual license to improvise and avoid the consequences of disappointing findings.  Programs could do much better. Yet most remain wedded to an outdated “friendship” model that has remained essentially unchanged since the early 1900s. They rest on the assumption that forming close bonds through conversations and activities can promote a broad range of positive outcomes while preventing the progression of problems. In fact, according to a large-scale national survey, the most commonly reported mentor activity is “making time to have fun,” followed by talking, engaging in athletic, cultural, and creative activities. To more effectively promote positive youth outcomes, these friendships should be leveraged to deliver culturaly-responsive evidence-based interventions that address the significant mental health, behavioral, and educational challenges facing today’s mentees. In this talk, I will synthesize years of research and suggest promising new directions for the field of youth mentoring. 

Francis Pearman, Stanford UniversityGentrification, Educational Inequality, and the Future of Urban Schooling

Dr. Francis Pearman, Stanford University
Friday February 26th, 2021; 11:00 - 12:30PM

Virtual - Zoom

Bio:Francis A. Pearman is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. His research focuses how poverty and inequality shape the life chances of children, especially in rapidly changing cities. Throughout his research, Pearman combines rigorous quantitative methods with careful attention to how “big data,” including geo-coded crime statistics and voting patterns might open new sites of inquiry in the field of education. His research has been published in a variety of leading journals, including American Educational Research Journal, Sociology of Education, and Review of Educational Research, and has been featured in a number of media outlets, including The Economist and The Atlantic. Pearman was recently the recipient of the Review of Research Award from the American Educational Research Association. Pearman holds a B.S from the University of Virginia and a M.Ed. and Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University. 

Abstract: Central city neighborhoods in the United States have long been plagued by concentrated poverty, racial segregation, and state-sanctioned disinvestment. In the last several decades, however, another important reality of residential stratification in urban America has emerged: namely, not all low-income neighborhoods stay that way. Modern trends are pointing, in part, to the reconstitution of urban space as a destination for affluent households, a repository for investment capital, and a battleground for the “right to the city” to be claimed and justified. These trends are codified in processes of gentrification that are reshaping the social, racial, economic, and institutional organization of many urban communities nationwide. However, the empirical research on how urban schooling figures into these processes is only beginning to emerge. In this presentation, I will summarize results from a national research agenda on gentrification and urban schooling. One key theme emerging from this work is that patterns of gentrification are highly sensitive to local schooling options, with rates of gentrification increasing when nearby schools close or when school choice options expand in the surrounding district. Another theme is that the impacts of gentrification on key educational outcomes are highly racialized and contingent on grade level. Overall, this budding research agenda suggests that prevailing patterns of gentrification across the United States can be understood, in part, as a cause as well as an outcome of the social, political, and demographic dimensions of urban schooling.  

Aaron Lyon, University of WashingtonTitle TBD

Dr. Aaron Lyon, University of Washington
Friday, March 26th, 2021; 11:00 - 12:15PM

Hunter Student Research Conference

Virtual - Zoom

Bio: Aaron Lyon, Ph.D., is SMART Center Co-Director, Associate Professor in the UW Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and a licensed clinical child psychologist. He also directs the Methods Core of the UW ALACRITY Center (https://www.uwalacrity.org/) and is Associate Editor for the journal Implementation Research and Practice (https://journals.sagepub.com/home/IRP). Dr. Lyon’s research focuses on increasing the accessibility, efficiency, and effectiveness of community- and school-based interventions for children, adolescents, and families. He is particularly interested in (1) the identification and implementation of low-cost, high-yield practices – such as the use of measurement-based care – to reduce the gap between typical and optimal practice in schools; (2) development of individual- and organization-level implementation strategies to promote adoption and sustainment of evidence-based psychosocial interventions within a multi-tier systems of support (MTSS) framework; and (3) human-centered design (and redesign) of psychosocial and digital technologies to improve their implementability, accessibility, and effectiveness. Dr. Lyon is Principal Investigator on multiple active grants from the National Institute of Mental Health, the Institute of Education Sciences, as well as additional sponsors.

Abstract:Coming Soon

Deborah Rivas-Drake, University of MichiganRising Up Together: Transformative Social-Emotional Learning in Practice with Latinx Youth

Dr. Deborah Rivas-Drake, University of Michigan
Friday, April 23rd, 2021; 11:00 - 12:30PM

Virtual - Zoom

Bio: Dr. Deborah Rivas-Drake is a Professor of Psychology and Education at the University of Michigan. Together with the Contexts of Academic + Socioemotional Adjustment (CASA) Lab, she examines how school, peer, and family settings can support adolescents in navigating issues related to race, ethnicity, racism, and xenophobia and how these experiences inform young people’s academic, socioemotional, and civic development. Currently funded by the W.T. Grant Foundation and National Science Foundation, her work seeks to illuminate promising practices that interrupt racism and xenophobia and that help set diverse young people on trajectories of positive contribution to their schools and communities. Her book, Below the Surface: Talking with Teens about Race, Ethnicity, and Identity (Princeton University Press), received the Social Policy Book Award from the Society for Research on Adolescence and the Eleanor Maccoby Award in Developmental Psychology from the American Psychological Association.

Abstract: Transformative SEL is a form of SEL aimed at interrupting the reproduction of inequitable educational environments by attending to issues of identity, agency, belonging and related issues such as power, privilege, prejudice, discrimination, social justice, empowerment, and self-determination. Since the introduction of this framework, questions have arisen about what it looks like in practice. In this talk, I will describe the School and Community Pathways to Engagement (SCoPE) project, a research-practice partnership that aims to clarify how SEL can better leverage youths’ emerging understandings of community issues and broader social injustices, as outlined in the transformative SEL framework. I will provide some emerging findings from the SCoPE project and highlight examples of transformative SEL in practice in predominantly Latinx classrooms.



Former Lecturers