Barbara Schneider is the John A. Hannah Distinguished Professor in the College of Education and a Professor of Sociology at Michigan State University. Her research interests focus on how the social contexts of schools and families influence the academic and social well being of adolescents as they move into adulthood. Relying on multiple research methods, she has examined how schools can become more effective in reducing persisting academic achievement gaps among children of different racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Concerned with issues of social justice and inequality, she uses a sociological lens to understand societal conditions and interpersonal interactions that create norms and values that enhance human and social capital. She is the principal investigator of the College Ambition Program, a study that tests a model for promoting a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) college-going culture in high schools.

Schneider is a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association, and is an elected member of the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSC) Council and of the Sociological Research Association. She was a Fulbright Scholar, New Century Scholars Program, and a Fellow for the Bellagio Study and Conference Center of the Rockefeller Foundation. She has been the Editor of Sociology of Education and of Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis and sits on the editorial boards of Teachers College Record and of the Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness. She has also served on the editorial boards of Sociology of Education, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, Review of Educational Research, American Educational Research Journal, and the American Journal of Education. She has published 15 books and over 100 journal articles and reports, including The Ambitious Generation: America’s Teenagers, Motivated but Directionless (with David Stevenson) and The AERA Handbook of Education Policy Research (with Gary Sykes and David Plank).

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