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Education, Work, and Inequality

Education drives health disparities across the life course, both directly and indirectly through workforce outcomes. Understanding how schools reduce educational disparities from preschool through early adulthood can lead to better education policies that promote population health. Understanding how inequality evolves in the workplace will improve labor policy. Economic and labor force inequalities have grown rapidly in recent decades and will have profound consequences for health and health disparities in future generations. Advances in measurement of educational and labor force processes yield key insights into policy interventions.

PRC faculty are producing cutting-edge work on how access to and experiences with the educational system and workforce influence health and well-being across the life course. Emerging research on new forms of workplace inequality and their implications for fertility, gender equality, and population well-being are also being explored. They are using novel data collections and developing new theoretical frameworks and measures to examine inequality in education, economic well-being, and health.

Area Projects

Discrimination and Achievement Disparities in Adolescence

Principal Investigator: Aprile Benner
Additional Investigator: Robert Crosnoe
Funded by: National Science Foundation

Adolescents and the Social Contexts of American Schools

Principal Investigator: Aprile Benner
Funded by: William T. Grant Foundation

Design Technology and Engineering Education for English Learner Students: Project DTEEL

Principal Investigator: Rebecca Callahan
Additional Investigator: Richard Crawford, Co-Principal Investigator
Funded by: National Science Foundation

Community Resources that Promote Mexican Origin Children’s STEM Education across Diverse Contexts

Principal Investigator: Tama Leventhal (Tufts University)
Co-Principal Investigator: Robert Crosnoe
Funded by: NSF / Tufts University STEM Educaiton

Collaborative Research: Early Career Transitions into STEM Employment: Processes Shaping Retention and Satisfaction

Principal Investigator: Jennifer Glass
Additional Investigator: Catherine Riegle-Crumb, Co-Principal Investigator
Funded by: National Science Foundation

Evaluation of Plan Sarmiento

Principal Investigator: Leigh Linden
Funded by: World Bank

Educational Attainment, Geography, and U.S. Adult Mortality Risk

Principal Investigator: Jennifer Karas Montes
Co-Principal Investigator: Mark Hayward
Funded by: Syracuse University

Educational and Early Life Predictors of Mild Cognitive Impairment: New Evidence About Mediators and Moderators From High School and Beyond.

Principal Investigator: John Robert Warrant (University of Minnesota)
Co-Principal Investigator: Chandra Muller, Eric Grodsky (University of Wisconsin); Jennifer Manly (Columbia University)
Funded by: National Institute on Aging (NIA) / University of Minnesota

Collaborative Research: STEM Education and Workforce Participation over the Life Cycle: The Intersection of Race, Ethnicity, Gender, and Disability Status

Principal Investigator: Chandra Muller
Additional Investigator: Sandra E. Black, Co-Principal Investigator
Funded by: National Science Foundation


Peer Influences on Adolescents' Self-Concept, Achievement, and Future Aspirations in Science and Mathematics: Does Student Gender and Race Matter?

Principal Investigator: Nilanjana Dasgupta, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Additional Investigator: Catherine Riegle-Crumb, Co-Principal Investigator
Funded by: National Science Foundation, through University of Massachusetts Amherst

Stories and Numbers: Creating Safe Schools for LGBT Youth in Texas

Principal Investigator: Stephen Russell
Funded by: William T. Grant Foundation

Getting Through the Gateway: Can Corequisite Algebra Improve STEM Progress and Degree Attainment at Community and Technical Colleges?

Principal Investigator: Lauren Schudde
Funded by: NSF

Examining College Students' Attitudes About Guns to Develop Lessons for Intervention

Principal Investigator: Harel Shapira
Co-Investigator: Ken-Hou Lin
Funded by: Joyce Foundation

Multi-State Study of Monetary Sanctions

Principal Investigator: Becky Pettit
Additional Investigator: Alexes Harris, parent project PI, University of Washington
Funded by: Laura and John Arnold Foundation 

The Role of Academic Achievement and Social Inclusion in Broadening STEM Participation: Intended and Actual Attainment at the Intersection of Gender and Race/Ethnicity

Principal Investigator: Catherine Riegle-Crumb
Additional Investigator: Chandra Muller, Co-Principal Investigator
Funded by: National Science Foundation

Identifying and Reducing Job Discrimination

Principal Investigator: Debra Umberson
Additional Investigators: David Pedulla, Stanford University; and Devah Pager, Harvard University
Funded by: W.K. Kellogg Foundation

School-based Marginalization, Social Behavioral Competencies, and Achievement: a Meta-analysis 

Principal Investigator: Fatima Varner
Co-Principal Investigator: Aprile Benner and Natasha Beretvas
Funded by: Institute of Education Sciences

Do Gaps in Test Scores, Noncognitive Skills, and Health Grow Faster in School or Out? New Analyses Using the ECLS-K:2010

Principal Investigator: Paul von Hippel 
Funded by: Russell Sage Foundation

Doctoral Dissertation Research: Law Enforcement Recruitment and Training and Their Effects

Principal Investigator: Christine Williams
Co-Principal Investigator: Samantha Simon
Funded by: NSF

Phase 2: National Study of Learning Mindsets

Principal Investigator: David Yeager
Funded by: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

National Study of Learning Mindsets 2018-2019 and Long-term Follow-up and Endowment Establishment

Prinicpal Investigator: David Yeager
Funded by: UBS Optimus Foundation (Switzerland)

National Study of Learning Mindsets (Phase 2)

Principal Investigator: David Yeager
Funded by:
 Raikes Foundation

Math Classrooms, Student Mindsets and STEM Pathways in High School

Principal Investigator: David Yeager
Funded by: National Science Foundation

Estimating and Understanding Effects of Teaching Teens that People Can Change.

Principal Investigator: David Yeager
Additional Investigators: Christopher Beevers, Co-Investigator; Robert Josephs, Co-Investigator
Funded by: Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Toward a Sociological, Contextual Perspective on Psychological Interventions

Principal Investigator: David Yeager
Funded by: William T. Grant Foundation

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    305 E. 23rd Street / RLP 2.602
    Mail Stop G1800
    Austin, Texas 78712-1699